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Festivals Of Barcelona Another Amazing Thing From This City

Aug 30, 2008
Barcelona is a city that seems to have everything a tourist could want. Great weather, a compact city that is easy to get around, full of art, culture and entertainment venues, great food and friendly locals. Of course, the proximity of Barceloneta beach to the city centre means that tourists can enjoy a day in the city sightseeing and finish up the day on the soft sand with an icy glass of Sangria. What more could you want for a great fun filled holiday?

If you've been to Barcelona before and want to see another side of the local culture, or if you are looking for a party or event to spice up your holiday, you may want to look at the possibility of visiting Barcelona when the city is celebrating one of its famous festivals.

There are many festivals during the year in Barcelona because not only do Barcelonians get to celebrate the national holidays that the rest of Spain celebrates, there are also many festivals that Catalans celebrate as well. Add to that local neighbourhood festivities and what you've got is a city that never seems to stop partying! This means that tourists can rest assured, that nearly any time of year, something or someone will be being celebrated while they are there!

Sant Juan is a popular fun- filled festival dedicated to Saint John. The origins of this celebration date back to Pagan times where people celebrated the summer solstice by feasting and drinking and dancing around huge bonfires, said to ward off evil spirits.

The theme of fire has carried through to the modern version of this festival, in the form of fuegos artificiales, better know as fireworks! As well as council sponsored fireworks shows, the local kids get to enjoy setting off loud cracking fireworks in local squares and plazas in the weeks leading up to the festival.

On the day itself (usually the 23rd June), people gather in the streets to dance and celebrate. You wont have to go far to join in the fun as many communities sponsor a free live music concert in their neighbourhood, but if you want to head to the real action of the festival, head to the beach where you can join in on one of the all night dance parties, complete with dancing and music until dawn, and lots of fireworks!

The Gracia street festival, held in mid August is another exciting celebration you can enjoy in Barcelona. The festival is a community event where the residents of the streets get together to decorate their street in a theme of their choice. A committee is formed to ensure the project is designed and completed in time for the grand opening. This is serious business! Each street is competing for the title of the Best Street of the festival, and planning for the next festival often begins the very week after the festival ends!

Thousands of brightly coloured plastic bottles and other found objects are used to splash the streets with colour. Giant paper mache figures guard the entry and exit to the streets and coloured lights are everywhere. The festival runs for a week where a panel of judges decide which street is the best.

Of course, like all street festivals in Catalonia, beer on tap will be available on just about every street corner, to get the party going. Bands will be set up in each decorated street to encourage passers by to come inside, admire the hard work and creativity of the residents and have some fun at the same time.

The Festival La Merce is another exciting event that brings celebration to the streets of Barcelona in late September for five days between the 19th and 24th. Celebrating the patron saint of the city, street parades, fire parades and giant paper mache figures will take to the city streets. Free concerts will be on every street corner to entertain the crowd.

These are just some of the many exciting events that give Barcelona the well-earned reputation of being one of the party capitals in Europe. So what are you waiting for? Just make sure your book your accommodation in Barcelona on time, to avoid disappointment!
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