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The parties you can't miss this summer

San Sebastian’s Semana Grande
12th June, 2024
Main image of the post

Cities Events Plans

In Euskadi, we are famous for being lovers of good food, and so we are, but we also like to have fun and have a good time with our friends, and if we put it all together, all the better! And that's what our fiestas are like, full of gastronomy, friends, and entertainment.

Would you like to visit us and discover our most traditional celebrations? Well, grab a pen and paper and write down the dates because in the following post we are going to tell you about the festivities in our three capitals: Vitoria-Gasteiz, San Sebastian, and Bilbao.

1. Virgen Blanca Festivities 2024

These are the main festivities in Vitoria-Gasteiz and are held in honor of its patron saint: La Virgen Blanca. It consists of six days of festivities and fun that begin with the descent of Celedón, the character of the festivities since 1957. It is a villager from Alava dressed in a blouse and holding an open umbrella who descends from the church of San Miguel to a balcony on Calle Postas to start the great event of the Green Capital. On the last day of the festivities, he goes back up to the bell tower.

They are held between 4 and 9 August with countless activities such as the traditional agricultural and livestock fair, music, and rural sports, among others.

Descent of Celedón
image of Virgen Blanca Festivities

2. San Sebastian’s Semana Grande 2024

The festivities of our coastal capital have their origins in the 19th century, the year in which there was a great increase in the number of tourists thanks to the visit of Queen Isabel II to San Sebastian. To entertain the visitors, they organized a series of events for a week, and, from then on, the citizens began to use the term Semana Grande (Big Week). The aim was for tourists to stay as long as possible in Donostia.

One of the most important events of these festivities is the fireworks, the symbol of the city. It is a tradition to see the ice cream in hand in the spectacular bay of La Concha.

This year 2024 will be held from 10 to 17 August, from Saturday to Saturday, as every year.

San Sebastian’s Semana Grande
San Sebastian’s Semana Grande

3. Bilbao's Semana Grande 2024

The main protagonist of Bilbao's festivities is Marijaia (lady party), the emblem of the festival since 1978. With her arms always raised, ready to dance, and ready to party, she is 4 meters tall and even has her song created by the well-known Basque musician Kepa Junkera.

On the last day of the festival, Marijaia crosses the estuary on a platform to be burnt afterward. Another of the typical characters of Aste Nagusia (big week) is the Gargantua, a giant man with his mouth open through which the bravest of the brave enter.

From the 17th to the 25th of August, txosnas (stalls) full of atmosphere and activities, popular meals, concerts, fireworks, long etcetera await you in Bilbao.

Txupinazo at the Arriaga Theater
Txupinazo at the Arriaga Theater

Don't miss this opportunity to get to know our most enjoyable side and discover our parties!

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