June 23rd is the most magical night in Catalonia: The night of San Juan. The Night of San Juan is one of the most popular celebrations in Catalonia and Valencia coinciding with the summer solstice. This night is the shortest night of the year, a magical night. A night full of traditions and rituals, with a common element: The fire.
In every street, town and above all on every beach, cannot fail the traditional fire, as well as gunpowder and firecrackers. The lanterns, the candles and the colourful garlands complete the festive decoration and help to set the night. Groups of friends, families, and public of all ages gather to celebrate outdoors this magical night. Also, you can’t miss the traditional “coca” of Sant Juan, a brioche coca with cream, pine nuts and candied fruit. Furthermore, you can try new coca’s like the puff pastry with chicharrones or the pine nuts filled with cream, always accompanied by fresh cava.
There are many coastal towns, both on the Costa Brava, Costa del Maresme and Costa Dorada, which celebrate popular festivals on the beach, as in addition to all rituals related to fire, there is a belief that on that night Magic, a bath in sea water has healing properties and it drives away the bad energies. In short, the Night of San Juan is linked to a great number of myths and legends. Here are some ideas in case you don’t have plans:
The night of San Juan
The Night of San Joan in Barcelona is celebrated everywhere, but if you want to live an unforgettable experience on the night of Sant Juan, come to the beach. Many bars and beach bars hold parties from sunset ‘til dawn, with live music, DJs, fireworks and bonfires.
In the Barceloneta neighbourhood, the “Nit del Foc” is organised every night with fire, magic, joy and lots of partying, with parades, “correfocs”, bonfire and concerts until the sun comes up over the beach.
Almost all the towns of the Costa Brava organise popular festivals, with music, bonfires and fireworks but if you decide to go to the Baix Empordà area, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Far de Sant Sebastià. This far boasts an idyllic location surrounded by a natural environment. The Far de San Sebastià offers spectacular views of the Mediterranean and the beaches of Tamariu, Llafranc and Calella de Palafrugell.
Do you want to spend an unforgettable night of San Juan? We suggest you visiting L’Estartit. Aboard of a handcrafted schooner, you can sail to the Foradada Rock, a marine cave opens on both sides in the Natural Park of the Montgrí, and enjoy fireworks from the sea. All accompanied by the typical “coca” and a glass of cava.
According to historical remains, this celebration has been held since 1928 coinciding with its main festival “Fogueres de Sant Juan” (bonfires of San Juan). The festivities are celebrated from the 20th toe the 24th of June and include traditional acts like the Mascletás, the election of the queen of the parties, the “plantà”, the cavalcade of the Ninot and parades.
June 24th is the day of “La cremà“, at 12 o’clock in the evening a huge palm tree is launched from Mount Benacantil. Thus begins the cremà, that is to say, the burning of the bonfires. At that moment, a large windmill lights the official bonfire of the Town Hall Square. The fiestas end with the popular “Banyà” (bathed), carried out by the firemen to put out the bonfires.