Sant Joan: The most magical night

Sant Joan: The most magical night

The exams have finished and nothing better if you are a student in Barcelona than to celebrate it on this special night, the most magical night of the year. We tell you more about its origin in our post today.


The festival of San Juan is a popular festival celebrated in very different ways throughout much of the country. In Barcelona, ??it is a popular celebration in which friends gather for dinner, light firecrackers and fireworks, eat the delicious coca of Sant Joan and toast with cava.

On the evening of June 23, the Canigó Flame arrives in the Plaza de Sant Jaume, where it is received by the municipal authorities, the Àliga de la Ciudad and the Giants of the City, while a traditional song, "Muntanyes del Canigó", is played. Then, the representatives of each neighborhood collect the fire that will travel through the city and light the bonfires of each neighborhood.

With the lighting of the bonfires the festivals begin in the squares and streets of Barcelona's neighborhoods in addition to the popular dinners, fireworks, dances and lots of fun until the early hours of the morning.

The good weather begins, the holidays, the end of the exams .. there is much to celebrate tonight. But, what is the origin of this celebration?

The San Juan festival is held every night on June 23 and is a celebration of the summer solstice. It is, in fact, the shortest night of the year, and you may have noticed that the days have more daylight hours. The Catholic Church coincides with the celebration of the festival with the date of birth of St. John the Baptist and has become a party with a marked symbolism: the purifying fire, the midnight baths, the herbs of St. John, the songs, the Dance and other magical rituals.

However, the origin of the celebration of the night of San Juan is pagan and is part of the group of solstitial parties, such as Christmas. With a tradition that goes back a long way before the implantation of Christianity, it is a cult to the sun, to the lengthening of the day, to the arrival of the summer solstice.

The party of the night of San Juan in the city of Barcelona is very old that revolves around the central presence of the bonfires. It is a popular belief that the flames drive away and frighten the evil spirits that are roaming during this night. In the eighteenth century the tradition was already established and laws were enacted to stop the fireworks and bonfires inside the city. But luckily and for the enjoyment of all, the party has remained until today despite the prohibitions and restrictions during the twentieth century.

If you have finished your studies and you are thinking about returning home, we recommend that you do it after the festival and you say goodbye to Barcelona with a night as magical and special as this one.

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