Spain is renowned for having a rich history and a wealth of culture, both contributing factors to the many traditions, festivals and events that take place across mainland Spain, the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands year round. The Spanish Tourist Office is here to shine a light on some of the lesser-known events happening across Spain in 2019.


Los Indianos - La Palma, Canary Islands

On 4 March 2019, the Fiesta de Los Indianos (Party of the Indians) takes place on the small Canary Island of La Palma. The party kicks off the island’s carnival season in the capital Santa Cruz de La Palma and involves thousands of people dressed head to toe in white throwing talcum powder over one another. The centre of the party is the Plaza de La Alameda which during the fiesta is referred to as La Plaza Cubana as a result of the influence of Cuban culture on the island. The Fiesta de los Indianos’ traditions originate from when the island men would return from Latin America with many riches.


La Dansa de la Mort – Verges, Catalonia

On 18 April 2019, the small town of Verges near the Costa Brava in Catalonia performs an unusual dance of death. The procession beats the drums and performers dance in skeleton-like costumes to symbolise the final judgement after death. This spectacle is held on the night of Easter Thursday and attracts thousands of visitors who pay an admission fee to enjoy the spectacle.


Festival de los Patios – Córdoba, Andalucía

In the first week of May every year, the Cordoba Patios Festival takes place in which locals elaborately decorate their courtyards with hundreds of colourful flowers and plants. These courtyards are privately owned and remain shut for most of the year only reopening to win the much sought after award for best patio. The amount of patios changes each year and so the routes through the city do as well. Guests can find all the information on the Puerta de los Patios website.


Los Hombres de Musgo – Bejar, Salamanca

In the small village of Bejar in the province of Salamanca, men and women cover themselves in moss during a Corpus Christi procession. Legend has it that century men camouflaged themselves in moss to attack and storm the gates of a Muslim fortress eventually reconquering it. Children who have taken part in their first holy communion accompany them on the parade, while locals in the Salamanca province throw flower petals to honour them. In 2019 the Moss Men can be seen on 15 June in the small town of Bejar.

The Salto del Colacho - Castrillo de Murcia, Burgos

This is a tradition celebrated each year in June in Castrillo de Murcia in Burgos. The festival involves a pastor blessing children who were born in the local area during the year. The children are then laid out on pillows in front of altars decorated with flowers. Meanwhile the ‘colacho,’ a man dressed in red and yellow to represent the devil, runs through the streets whipping those in his path and receiving a torrent of abuse in return. He then runs and jumps over the babies to ward off any bad spirits and provide the children with protection and safety. The townsfolk then indulge in dancing, music, local cuisine and wine. This year the festival will be held on 23 June.

San Juan – Menorca, Balearic Islands

On 23 June 2019, the nationwide festival of San Juan has a particularly spectacular proceeding. Traditional horse riders with locally bred horses parade through the streets as the riders show off their horsemanship skills by ‘dancing’ with the horses. They also perform ‘Jaleos’ whereby they rear up the horses on their hind legs and walk through the crowd. The spectators then try and touch the horse’s heart which traditionally brings good luck.

Wine Fight - Haro, La Rioja

Many are familiar with La Tomatina, the world-famous food fight held in Buñol every year, however not so many will know of a similar tradition that takes place in Haro, La Rioja. La Batalla del Vino de Haro takes place from 27 – 30 June every year and involves Haro locals throwing glasses of wine over each other in celebration of St. Peter’s Day Feast. Following the wine fight, the townsfolk and lucky visitors enjoy traditional dances, music and local cuisine.


La Batalla de las Flores – Valencia

The Batalla de la Flores is a spectacular parade that takes place on 28 July 2019 to close Valencia’s July Fair. Floats parade down the Paseo de la Alameda beautifully decorated with women in traditional dress aboard. During the parade they must protect themselves with tennis rackets from the torrent of brightly coloured carnations being hurled at them. When the ‘battle’ draws to a close, the Paseo de la Alameda is left with a blanket of pungent flowers as a huge firework display begins.


El Cipotegato – Tarazona, Aragon

On 27 August 2019, the traditional Cipotegato (a jester) runs through the small town of Tarazona while being bombarded with tomatoes by practically everyone in the town. Once the jester reaches the Plaza de España he is lifted to the monument as the surrounding spectators shout “Cipote, Cipote!” as they tie a handkerchief around the neck of the statue. This marks the beginning of the week-long Fiestas de San Atilano. It is said that the event originates with an old tradition whereby a prisoner would be granted their chance at freedom by trying to out run a stone throwing mob. Fortunately the stones have since been replaced with tomatoes.


Cascamorras Festival - Guadix and Baza, Granada

The Cascamorras Festival takes place in early September in Baza and Guadix and was declared to be of International Tourist Interest in 2013. Tradition states that a worker nicknamed Cascamorras (clown) from Guadix was helping construct a church in Baza when he found a sacred image of the Virgen de la Pieded (Our Lady of Mercy). The two towns argued over the ownership of the image but it remained in Baza. Baza stated that if a ‘Cascamorra’ from Guadix could retrieve the Virgin and leave the town clean, then they could keep it. Nowadays, Cascamorras run through the streets and are pelted with olive oil, eggs, flower and paint which results in a huge messy fight. This takes place first in Baza on 6 September then again in Guadix on 9 September.

Filoxera Festival - Penedés, Catalonia

The small town of Penedés in Catalonia was once ravaged by phylloxera (a pest of commercial grapevines) in the late 19th century. Nowadays the town hosts the Filoxera Festival in which giant models of the insect ‘attack’ the town with firework displays killing the model grapevines that are being paraded around the streets. Throughout the festival the ‘farmers’ mount a comeback in the form of dances and parades. The festival as a whole explains step by step this significant period in Penedés’ history. The festival takes place on the 7 and 8 September every year.


Sitges International Film Festival – Sitges, Catalonia

The Sitges International Film Festival is particularly unique as the event centres around the genres of Sci-fi, Horror and Fantasy. The festival is open to spectators and takes place in Sitges’ main venues such as the Auditori, El Prado, El Retiro and Sala Tramuntana. There is also an award ceremony celebrating a number of different categories within the Sci-fi, Horror and Fantasy genres. The event takes place in early October with the dates this year falling from 4-14 October 2019.


Cathedral of Santa Maria Light Phenomenon – Palma, Mallorca

On just two days a year in Palma’s Cathedral of Santa Maria, a rare phenomenon takes place whereby the large and small rosettes align to form a figure of eight in dazzling colours. Those two dates are Candlemas on 2 February and the other 11 November on St. Martin’s Day. The first rays of morning light illuminate the main façade triggering an explosion of colour from the 1,116 pieces of glass that make up the larger stained window known as the ‘Gothic Eye’. The spectacle is one of the most anticipated of the year.


Torrox Migas Festival – Torrox, Andalucía

The Migas Festival in Torrox is a celebration of the town’s local dish, migas (fried breadcrumb). On the Sunday before Christmas which this year falls on 22 December, a bell rings signalling all the town’s folk to come and collect their portion of migas with a glass of red wine. From there celebrations begin with musical performances and dancing, not to mention the food stalls offering a variety of local dishes to those participating in the festivities.


For more information on Spain as a holiday destination, please visit

For the latest news on Spain, please visit our Social News HubTwitter @Spain_inUK The Spanish Tourist Office in London is represented by LOTUS ( 0207 953 7470).