The patron saint festivals, also known as “fiestas mayores”, are the celebrations with which the cities and towns of Spain annually celebrate the date of their patron saint.
The patron saint is, according to the Catholic and Orthodox tradition, a saint who has a special connection with a certain group of people, community, clan or family, profession, place, town or congregation and thanks to this special relationship, those belonging to said group, ask the saint for help, protection and intercession before God. In fact, the word “patron” comes from the Latin, patrōnus (synonymous of defender).
The festivities, therefore, include religious acts, mixed with street celebrations such as concerts, dances, festivals, fairs, children’s games etc …
The most famous patronal celebrations, among others, in Spain are:
– San Sebastián de los Reyes – San Sebastián: January 19 and 20
– San Cecilio – Granada: first Sunday of February
– Fiestas del Pilar – Zaragoza: week before October 12
– Fiestas de la Mercé – Barcelona: week of September 24
– Fiestas de la Almudena – Madrid: November 9
To which fiesta mayor are you planning to go?