The Sardine’s funeral in Los Sauces, 2015

March 1, 2015

Last night was the famous sardine’s funeral in Los Sauces. As usual, there were lots of amazing costumes: some ingenious, some cheap and cheerful, some extravagant, many humourous.   It’s traditional to serve fried sardines, and very tasty they are too.               One group brought along this amazing fairy tale coach. They were inviting children to have their photo taken in it. Being a…


Their Majesties, the Reyes Magos

Gaspar visiting Santa Cruz de la Palma
January 4, 2015

  Although Father Christmas does visit Spanish children, he’s a new arrival. Traditionally the presents arrive on the morning of January 6th, when the three kings visit baby Jesus. (The sales don’t normally start this early, because Christmas isn’t over here.) And on the evening of the 5th, their majesties ride in procession through most of the major towns and villages in Spain. In previous years we’ve usually gone to…


Nativity Scenes in the Canaries

Christmas trees are a newish thing here, although probably most houses have one now. The main traditional decoration is nativity scenes. Some just show the stable, but some public ones are so elaborate that they include the whole village, and it’s always a Canarian village. Obviously that’s historically inaccurate, but no more so than all the English nativity scenes where Mary and Jesus are blond. This one was on display…

December 20, 2014

The Romeria de San Antonio

A romería is a cross between a religious procession and a party. Typically, they hold a special mass and then take the statue out for several kilometres along a traditional route, followed by floats which hand out free food and wine, and lots of people, some in traditional dress, many of them singing and / or dancing. Since it’s a big event, most of them don’t happen every year. Saturday…

July 20, 2013

Fiesta del Carmen in Puerto Tazacorte

Wednesday was the Fiesta del Carmen, which is celebrated in Santa Cruz and Puerto Tazacorte. They have a special mass, and then they take the statue of the Virgin of Carmen out for a procession. So far, so much like most fiestas on the island. Only in this case, they take the statue of the virgin out on a boat parade, to bless the fishermen.These photos are fromPuerto Tazacorte. The…

July 17, 2013

Los Indianos on Monday

Monday night will be the biggest night of the year on La Palma, the Los Indianos parade, in Santa Cruz de La Palma. In the 19th century the island was very poor, and many people emigrated to Cuba – the Indies. Some of them came back rich, so that the arrival of a boat from Cuba was quite an event, even though there were more boats to Latin America than…

February 10, 2013