January Festivals

PROCESSION OF THE THREE WISE MEN

 

 Inspired by the processions of Moors and Christians, the processions of the Three Wise Men (or Kings) are special parades which are  part of the Christmas celebrations in the 'Sierra of Mariola' and the 'Ribera of Vinalopó' since the XIXth century. In recent years this element of Christmas has taken off so much that it can be found in nearly the whole of the Valencian Community. The sight is magical as the three Kings arrive in the towns  by sea, helicopter, balloon, train or camel to give out their presents to the deserving children. The Feast Day often begins a few days before in many towns with the arrival of the Kings' Messengers collecting the children's wish lists. On the fifth, when night falls, the streets become a  magical  spectacle on the arrival of the Kings.




SAINT ANTONI'S BONFIRE

 

Canals

 

 From the 8th of December, the day that the First 'Soca' (the first of the logs that will go towards the construction of the pyre), Canals strives towards the preparation of what is considered to be the largest bonfire in the world (included in the Guiness Book Of Records). With a height that varies between 20 to 25 metres. The pile of trunks are  covered with green pine branches and small orange branches. On the eve of Saint Antoni, after Holy Mass, the 'Vítol' song gives way to the lighting, (Vítol i vítol al nostre patró del poble, vítol!!) In only a few minutes the Town Square turns into a  unique spectacle of  flame and smoke.

 


note: no such festivals appear in the French calended due to the lack of three wise men or a virgin. - Ed

 

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