Looking for a quick getaway that involves a stunning fireworks show? How about travelling to Spain to experience the Santa Tecla Festival in Tarragona? It’s a beautiful town that’s crazy for fireworks – they’ve already held the Tarragona International Fireworks Competition earlier this year, but people just can’t get enough of fireworks in Spain, just as they can’t here in the UK, and there’s another festival coming up.
So, what is the Santa Tecla Festival about and how to get involved?
The history of Santa Tecla Festival
The cult of Santa Tecla has existed in Tarragona ever since ancient times. However, the festivities became a proper festival taking over the city’s streets during the period of Reconquest. The earliest accounts of the event go all the way back to 1091. That is when Pope Urban II declared the Santa Tecla Festival to be a day of obligation.
The importance of the festival is evident by the recognition of the Spanish and the Catalonian Government. Both authorities have declared it a Festival of National Interest. It is no wonder the festival gathers visitors to the city all across Spain and the world. Even in the early days, the festival was one of the first in the world to gather all social classes together – it didn’t matter whether you were a military or a working class man, Santa Tecla was and remains a festival for everyone.
What happens during the festival?
If you looked up a definition of a festival, you should be greeted with a picture of the Santa Tecla festivities – that’s how massive and fun-filled the celebration is. Each nook and cranny of Tarragona is filled with people and parties.
The event centres on a traditional parade. Giant figures and characters are marched across the streets while traditional music makes everyone want to get up and dance. Of course, you’ll also find plenty of traditional food and drink served in various stalls and cafeterias across the city. You’ll also be in awe of the castellers, which are human castles that can reach up to nine tiers high! Here’s a glimpse of what this looks like:
The big celebrations are finished with an event called Correfoc, which means fire running. The streets are filled with characters dressed up as devils and dragons carrying fire, with brave people running and jumping over them.
As with any good festival and celebration, there will also be plenty of fireworks to enjoy. The city streets are always full of crackles and big explosions to wow the crowds.
Santa Tecla Festival 2017
This year the event will take place between September 15th and September 24th. If you’re looking for a fun holiday or you happen to be in Barcelona or the east coast of Spain during those days, you don’t want to miss the festival. You can find more information about the city of Tarragona from their official tourism website.
If you can’t make it to Tarragona to celebrate with the locals, you can always shop for fireworks online and organise your own Spanish themed party! Nothing is better on a warm September night then a bit of fireworks, tapas and proper Spanish red wine. Sounds good – Suena bien!