Wondering what you can do in Barcelona during the winter period? After Christmas and New Years, you might think that all the fun is over in January. Wrong! January is one of Barcelona’s most exciting months in terms of events. Next to that, it is also the city’s ”coldest” month, but with an average of 15 degrees Celsius, we are hardly complaining. Therefore, we will inform you in this blogpost about the wonderful event you can attend in Barcelona during January.
El primer baño del año
This crazy but fun event in January is happening right after the New Year’s Eve festivities die down. Hundreds of brave souls make their way to Sant Sebastià Beach at 12 PM on January the 1st. Here they will take their first swim of the year, and it is definitely not for the faint of heart.
If you are ready to brave the chilly waters, remember that plenty of warm food and drinks await you once you have taken the first swim of the year. Every year there is a great vibe going on during this event and definitely the post-swim warm-ups might just exactly be needed to convince you to take part of it. It will definitely be a great start of the New Year!
Three Kings is one of the most celebrated festivals in Barcelona. It is a Christian feast day and the children are in the centre this day. Every January 6, the 12th day after Christmas, children across the country jump out of bed and rush to the presents to see what gifts the kings have left for them.
The evening before the Three Kings arrive, on the 5th of January, there will be a big parade as the kings arrive in Barcelona by boat. They then embark on a parade route through the city. To watch the excitement from the start, head to Port Vell around 4.30 PM on January 5 to welcome the Kings in Barcelona. After a short speech, the 3-hour-long parade through the city will be held. During the parade children will receive lots of candy. You will also see children handing out their letters to the three kings asking them for the gifts they want. Even if you are not a kid, it is still a festive event to add to your agenda.
The 6th January is a public holiday in Spain and this is the biggest giving day in Barcelona. It is also the day that the children can open their presents from The Three Kings.
La Festa de Sant Antoni
The holidays may be officially over after the Three Kings, but that does count for the events happening. The following weekend, it is party time in the bustling neighbourhood Gracia. Here, residents celebrate the St. Anthony Festival all day long from the 11th until the 20th of January 2020.
This celebration started in a small town on the island of Mallorca, but the festival has made its way to Barcelona. That is how it became one of Gracia neighbourhood’s most wonderful events and something you can definitely not miss in Barcelona in January.
During the festival, one will notice the Mallorcan traditions and customs with a Catalan twist throughout the event, with a lot of castellers (human towers). The last night of the event, an enormous bonfire and a firecracker-lit run known as the correfoc will be given.
Every January you can experience the parade of Tres Tombs. The Tres Tombs festival will be celebrated in towns throughout Catalunya, this year on the 18th of January. They celebrate St. Anthony, the saint of animals, the poor and the sick. A horse-drawn parade will take three turns (tres tombs). The traditional parade stems from when farmers from nearby villages brought their animals to Barcelona in order to be blessed by a priest.
The idea remains still, but with a really nice twist. Nowadays, even the locals can bring their pets to the event to be blessed. During the parade you will see a lot of horse drawn vehicles, with traditional costumes. When the parade passes the church “la Escola Pia de Sant Antoni”, all the parade animals and riders are blessed and anointed with holy water by a priest. When the parade is over a lot of locals go to the priest to have their own small pets blessed.
So, which event are you going to attend in Barcelona in January?
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