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Beside the decorated tree, Catalan houses also display a Nativity Scene at Christmas; the representation with figures to recreate the birth of Jesus. Streets, squares, churches and entities of the city each prepare their own Nativity Scene, some with real people acting as figures. The most famous one is in the Plaça Sant Jaume, but there are many others such as the Iglesia de Belen, the Pia Almoina, Associació de Pessebristes de Barcelona, Reial Monestir de Santa Maria de Pedralbes, or Poble Espanyol. There are also scenes that underline a particular feature, such as the Nativity Scene of the Casa dels Entremesos, which has a touch of humour with the giant figures of Ciutat Vella.
Undoubtedly a tradition that deserves exploring this Christmas.
Closely related to Carnival, the Tres Tombs feast is held –at least since 1826– in Sant Antoni neighbourhood, the heart of Eixample district.
In homage to muleteers, wagoners and peasant farmers, the horse parade is performed by ancient carriages animal drawn and several riders. It always appears the Unitat Muntada de la Guàrdia Urbana (Horse Guards of the local police) and riders who escort Sant Antoni and Santa Eulàlia flags, the co-patron saint of the city. But, overall, there are amazing carriages such as a firefighter truck driven by horses, the Imperial carriage of the funeral services, a delivery carriage for wineskins, one for the rice growers and some other historical ones from Barcelona and other Catalan cities.
Lots of citizens –and lots of kids- congregate together in front of the church to bless their domestic animals. The parade finishes in Plaça Sant Jaume, when the local authorities welcome the entourage.
Running since 2012, Llum BCN is a festival of light that aims to counter the darkness of winter with the splendour of light (llum means 'light' in Catalan) reflected on some of the city's most beautiful buildings and spaces. This year the Llum BCN festival takes place again at the Poblenou neighbourhood, a district currently immersed in an intense process of transformation.
The citizens of Barcelona will soon be able to discover the force that light has to transform public spaces through artistic installations, projections and mappings by national and international artists. And as a demonstration of Barcelona’s emerging talent, students from 14 of the city’s colleges of art, lighting, design and architecture are using nothing else but light to present their intervention projects in the space. Overall, it provides us with a reflection on art, society and new technologies - in short, contemporary life. Don't miss it!
The origins of the Fiestas of Santa Eulàlia are rooted in the legend of Barcelona's second patron saint and are a focal point for the city's main winter celebrations.
The festivities take place between 7 and 12 February over a weekend full of activities rooted in popular culture and traditions, with a children's audience very much in mind: giants, the correfoc (groups of ‘demons’ letting off fireworks in the streets) and human tower builders. There are also folkloric dance groups, the ‘colles bastoneres’ who have invited dance troupes from all over to take part in the first ever Diada bastonera de Santa Eulàlia as a celebration of the art.
This year also marks the centenary celebrations of the New Giants of the House of Charity which coincide with the 160th anniversary of the Gegants Vells (Old Giants).
Dijous Gras (Fat Thursday) marks the beginning of the awaited Carnival festivities week.It is a tradition on this Thursday to eat sausage and Spanish omelet.Carnival is very dear to the people of Barcelona, and many neighborhoods organize banquets and serve hot chocolate with the contribution of everyone. Other places will offer leisure activities including Carnival makeup workshops, concerts and performances. And in the district of Sarrià, Fat Thursday concludes with a meal of "butifarra de huevo" (egg sausage).Immerse yourself tradition!
There are two official languages in Catalonia: Catalan and Spanish, and there are more and more people in the region who understand and speak English. You’re sure to get by.
One of the symbols of Barcelona, a meeting place for locals and visitors alike where people also flock to celebrate the victories of the Catalan team, Futbol Club Barcelona, Barça. The Canaletes Fountain has become one of Barcelona's most visited landmarks.
The Fossar de les Moreres is a place of great symbolic significance where the weight of history takes centre stage. Here, right in the centre of the Born neighbourhood, was the site of the graveyard for the fallen during the 1714 Siege of Barcelona. A monument stands on the site as a reminder. The place sometimes goes unnoticed by visitors. For the Catalans, the fossar is more than a memory. It is a homage.
As a large metropolis, Barcelona receives the very best of the products that are cultivated, fished, reared, hunted or collected in Catalonia.
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