Barcelona lights up for Christmas

The turning-on of the lights on Friday the 21st of November is the starting gun for a host of activities designed to infuse the city with the Christmas spirit

The switch was thrown for Barcelona’s Christmas lights on Friday the 21st of November at 6.30 pm in the Jardinets de Gràcia, and many streets are now festooned with illuminated decorations that both lend the city a magical air and mark the beginning of the Christmas festivities. As is customary, a series of activities have been programmed to give the celebrations their particular seasonal buzz.

The traditional nativity scenes return to the Plaça Sant Jaume and the forecourt of the City Council and, as with every year, the Sant Jaume nativity scene, always a surprise, is a well-kept secret that will be revealed on the inauguration date on the 28th of November and will remain on view up until the 6th of January, 2015. Around the same date the City Council will present an exhibition of nativity scenes entitled Brull. The Catalan Crib, with figures by Catalan sculptor and ceramic artist, Josep M. Brull i Pagès, on loan from the Ethnological Museum of Barcelona.

Christmastime in Barcelona, however, offers more than just lights and nativity scenes, and the city’s true festive spirit takes the form of, among other activities, Christmas markets, charity events and, of course, a tradition little scene outside of Catalonia, making the giant Tio de Nadal, or Christmas Log, located in the Santa Lucía Christmas Fair, defecate.

Music is another fundamental element of the festivities and visitors and residents alike are encouraged to enjoy the traditional Christmas Carols performed by the Orfeó Català on Friday the 2nd of January in the Plaça del Rei.

Shortly after this comes the event most anticipated by all families and children: the Biblical Magi, or Three Kings. Children are invited to make their wishes known to the royal postman on the gallery of the forecourt of the City Council and the Royal Workshops located in Pavilion 7 of the Feria de Montjuïc will once again open their doors to reveal the preparations for the Cavalcade of Magi which, on the evening of the 5th of January, will once again bring its particular form of magic and cheer to the city. Another not-to-be-missed visit for the younger members of the family is the Three Wise Men Toy Factory, an exhibition which will open its doors on the 27th of December in the arts factory Fabra i Coats, giving children the opportunity to bear witness to one of their factories of their dreams.

Information on these and many other activities can be found here.

Publication date: Friday, 21 November 2014
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