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CHRISTMAS IN SPAIN. How long does it take? For many families the Christmas celebration begins on December 8th with the when people decorate their houses.

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Presentation on theme: "CHRISTMAS IN SPAIN. How long does it take? For many families the Christmas celebration begins on December 8th with the when people decorate their houses."— Presentation transcript:


2 How long does it take? For many families the Christmas celebration begins on December 8th with the when people decorate their houses for the season. For other people, it begins on December 22nd with the television broadcast of the acclaimed Spanish lottery. Spanish Christmas lottery Christmas continues until January 6th with the Epiphany, or celebration of the Three Kings from the Orient who brought presents to Baby Jesus on the day he was born.

3 Christmas Food Food is the perfect way to gather the family, sit down to a huge meal, and talk and drink for hours. The typical food we eat at Christmas is seafood, lamb, turkey, turron (similar to nougat), marzipan and polvorones. Marzipan Turrón Polvorones

4 Christmas Decorations Most houses in Spain are decorated with the Nativity Scene or a Christmas tree, or both. In Madrid very original Christmas trees are set up around the city.

5 Madrid’s Christmas Trees

6 Our most important holidays: 24 th December (Noche Buena, which means: Good Night) On Chritsmas Eve we usually meet at some relative’s house and most families eat their main Christmas meal on Christmas Eve. The traditional Spanish dinner is turkey, lamb or seafood and we usually drink cava (which is similar to French champagne). Some people go to Midnight Mass and some families sing typical Christmas carols or play instruments like a tambourine or a “zambomba”. Some kids receive presents from Santa Claus, but the tradition in Spain is to receive the Christmas presents on the 6 th of January. SPANISH TRADITIONAL CHRISTMAS INSTRUMENTS

7 Christmas Day Christmas Day is a very special day when we usually have lunch with our families. Some of these family gatherings are very large. December 28 th is called “Day of the Innocent Saints” and it is like April’s Fools Day in the UK. People try to trick each other into believing silly stories and jokes.

8 31 st December: New Year’s Eve This day is called “Nochevieja” (or “The Old Night”). One special tradition is that you eat 12 grapes with the 12 strokes of the clock at Midnight. Thousands of people meet at the Puerta del Sol, in Madrid city centre to receive the New Year, singing, dancing and, of course, eating their 12 grapes. You can also watch the celebration on TV and eat the grapes with your family. However, this is not such a familiar celebration and many people spend this night with friends, have dinner in a restaurant or go out to parties. This is a really fun celebration for everybody.

9 Images from “Noche Vieja”

10 New Year’s Day The 1st of January is a national holiday. In the morning the streets are empty because everybody sleeps after staying up all night partying. It is typical to organize concerts and many families get together again to have a big lunch and celebrate the first day of the year. Three King’s Night The night of the 5th of January is a very special moment for kids because it’s the moment when Spanish children get their Christmas presents. In Spain it is Melchor, Gaspar and Balthazar (The Three Wise Men) who bring Christmas presents to children who have been good throughout the year, but, first of all children have to write their letters, saying which presents they would like them to bring. All families come out onto the street to receive the Wise Men. They arrive with a traditional parade, with camels loaded with presents and the Kings throw sweets to the children. Fantastic floats pass by, decorated with bright colours, while music bands play Christmas songs and carols. There are parades celebrated all over Spain on this day. Each has its own particular style. In Barcelona, for example, the Three Wise Men arrive by sea.

11 Images from The Three Kings’ Parade

12 The Three Kings leave the presents next to the children’s shoes

13 6th of January: The Three Wise Men’s Day In Spain this day is as important as Christmas day, especially for kids. When the children wake up in the morning they find their presents. Some families have hot chocolate for breakfast and there’s a popular tradition: to eat a “Roscón”, (a sweet really big doughnut covered with cherries and sugar). A little toy is buried inside the “roscón” and the person who finds the toy gets good luck for the next year. If, instead of the toy you find a bean, you will have to pay for the doughnut.

14 EASTER IN SPAIN Semana Santa (or Holy Week) is the Spanish name for Easter. In most Spanish towns, Easter begins on the Sunday before Easter (Palm Sunday) and lasts until Easter Sunday. These images show images from a Palm Sunday procession: children carrying palms and a typical “paso” or Easter float in Seville

15 The most famous and typical processions take place in Andalusia, in particular in Seville and Malaga, but there are processions in most cities and towns in Spain. The style is different in each region, but the basic components of a procession are the different brotherhoods that belong to different churches and the Easter floats (called “pasos”). Most floats carry representations of Christ and Mary the Virgin.

16 The floats are heavy, especially in Andalusia, which is the most extravagant region for Semana Santa. Strong men carry the floats for many hours Some people carry crosses or walk the streets barefoot. The suffering experienced is compared to that experienced by Christ carrying the cross. Sometimes flamenco is sung from a balcony and the procession stops and listens to the song with great emotion.

17 Images from different Easter Processions



20 Traditional Spanish Easter food

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