Seville has many national or regional public holidays, big events, festivals and celebrations that are full of traditions and folklore. People from all over the world come to enjoy and experience it. A real happening. Listed below are the three biggest and most famous events or festivals that are truly an experience:
On 5 and 6 January of each year, Three Kings' day is celebrated with long parades through the city. From the beautiful floats (very much) sweets and presents are thrown to the children at the side of the road. They celebrate that the three Kings from the East visited the newborn baby Jesus with the presents of gold, frankincense and myrrh. Now the Kings come with gifts for the children who have been sweet. Those which were not get a bag of sweet charcoal. Bakers make this day a special cake, el roscón de reyes, the ring of the king. Who will find the King inside the cake will have a whole year of luck!
In the week before Easter is remembered in Seville the suffering of Jesus with huge processions. There can be admired as much as 70 processions accompanied by an engaging playing fanfare and sometimes 5,000 people (per procession!). Decorated statues of Jesus and Mary are carried through the city. Many people get emotional when they see the statues while hearing the dramatic music. The processions begin and end all in their own parish. The official part goes through the old town, culminating with the Cathedral. The full brotherhood and everything with it goes through the Cathedral! Some processions take up to 12 hours. Let's hope it does not rain because the entire procession will be cancelled. That provides a sincere and deep tears by the brothers...
Don't forget to eat the sweet bread that is only available during the Semana Santa: Torrijas! It is a bit like a thicker baked French toast but it is very sweet. During this period it can often be found as a dessert in restaurants but often available throughout the day. Delicious with a good cup of coffee!
Seville has the best known and largest Semana Santa in Spain. That means that many millions of people come to the city to see the many processions. The old center of Seville is also entirely dominated by the processions; streets are crammed with rental venues, seats and stands to view the processions. Streets or attractions may also be closed or different opening times may apply. Naturally, hotels or accommodation are scarce and more expensive this week. So keep this in mind when you come to Seville.
Since 1847, the beginning of spring is celebrated with the Feria de Abril (Fair of April). It once started as a cattle market and nowadays the ultimate festival week for Sevillians with five to six million visitors in one week! The women are very beautiful in traditional Flamenco dresses and also men in tight suit including hat. The terrain of the Feria is full of houses, casetas, in which is danced, ate and drank. There is a big fair featuring attractions. The opening is always the second Monday after Easter. It is traditional to eat fried fresh(!) fish (pescado frito) that evening. The week of festivities will end on Saturday with a spectacular firework show. The Feria is also the opening of the bullfighting season.
Royal detail: The Dutch King Willem Alexander and Queen Maxima met at the Feria de Abril in Seville. Who knows what can happen to you during your visit..?
Handy for you! Download here the map of the Feria de Abril site so that you do not get lost.
💡 Book our Feria de Abril Tour!
You can not miss this event when you are this week in Seville and really wants to experience this city. So book therefore our Feria de Abril Tour.
Spain has (much) national, regional (provincial) and local (city, town or region) public holidays or days off. Locally it often depends on a traditional grand event such as the Feria de Abril in Seville. Find out well when there are holidays and days off. For example, you are not the first making a day trip to Córdoba to visit the impressive Mezquita and stands for a closed door. Below are some useful links to plan your city trip: