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Melissa Jose

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Christmas Celebration Traditions and Customs in Spain


People all over the world celebrate Christmas in their own unique traditions and culture. Even people of same country have different ways of celebrating Christmas. Because people from various parts of the world reside in different country but follow the customs followed by their homeland Thus, Spanish people too have numerous Christmas traditions they follow which may differ from other people of Spain. We are here with a list of few Christmas Celebrations and customs followed by Spanish people.

1. Midnight Mass

Christmas Celebration Traditions and Customs in Spain

Spanish people have this tradition of attending Midnight Mass on the Christmas Eve which is also called La Misa Del Gallo which means The Mass of the Rooster to celebrate their faith. It is known by this as it is believed rooster was supposed to send the message that Jesus was born. Usually main Christmas meal which is taken on Christmas Eve is before or after the midnight mass.

2. The three Kings

The three Kings

Spain has a different story of gifts, here Santa Claus is not the one who brings gifts for Children instead kings greet the kids with gifts and toys and this is not done on Christmas day but on night of January 5th. It is believed entourage of kings with his helpers, animals and elaborate floats come and parade across the towns. They throw sweets and other necessary things to the needy and the kids. These kids when return home leaves their shoes out so that King can fill them with presents and candies overnight.

3. The Basque Father Christmas

 The Basque Father Christmas

The people of Basque have their own form of Father or Santa Claus. A mythical giant in form of Olentzero is dressed in tattered peasant’s clothes and is also smoking the pipe. On the night of 23 December in Bilbao he travels from Gran Via to Arriaga Theatre and to bring gifts for the children on Christmas Eve. Here in northern Spain he is considered as an alternative to Santa Claus and Three Wise men.

4. Grappling with Grapes

Grappling with Grapes

This is a unique tradition of Spain that started in Alicante which is in eastern Spain. Here on New Year’s Eve the locals scoff up 12 grapes when the clock strikes 12 in the midnight. This was actually to boost the abundant harvest of grapes, which would get sold before the grapes went off. This 12 uvas tradition was started by vine growers of eastern Spain in the beginning of the century. This tradition is widely followed by Latin American countries as they consider this will bring prosperity in the coming year. Buy Cake Online and celebrate Jesus’ birthday by cutting cake.

5. Nativity Scenes and Christmas Decorations in Spain

 Nativity Scenes and Christmas Decorations in Spain

Nativity scenes also known as Pesebres are quite popular in Spain. They have Nativity scenes set up all over the country in different shapes, sizes colours and styles, even the smallest village have lovely nativity scene at church or Main Square. Different plays and presentations are held in towns about the story of the birth of Jesus Christ. Streets, Buildings and homes are decorated with flamboyant decorations, Christmas tree and lightnings all over winter holidays. Make Christmas Gift Delivery to your loved ones and pass on Christmas and New Year wishes with these gifts.

6. Christmas Sweets and Cava

Christmas Sweets and Cava

On Christmas Eve the whole family gathers and have a main Christmas meal. It is called Nochebuena which means good night in Spanish. This Christmas Eve meal is held before the Christmas before the service. They most commonly have mushroom truffles and roasted young hen for meal. After the meals different sweets like marzipan, polvorones, cava and turron are served. All these delicious Christmas sweets are taken with cava which is like a sparkling wine similar to champagne which is mostly produced in Catalonia.

You would have seen a mixture of so many different traditions make up perfect Christmas Celebration in Spain.