Uncover the magic of Feria de Granada, from its fascinating history to its lively events, and discover all you need to plan your trip. Experience the festive atmosphere of the Fair of Granada, where ancient traditions come alive with music and dance. The Feria de Granada, also known as the Corpus Christi Fair, is an annual event that takes place in the city of Granada, Spain. This festival is a celebration of the region’s cultural heritage and traditions and attracts visitors from all over the world.
1. History of Feria de Granada
The origins of Feria del Corpus Christi in Granada date back to the 15th century when it was held to celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi. The objective of this festival was to put an end to the Islamic realm of the Nasrid Kingdom. The festival was initially a religious celebration, but over time it evolved into a more secular event that celebrated the region’s cultural traditions, such as flamenco music and dance, bullfighting, and traditional dress. This festival has become one of the most important events on the city’s cultural calendar, attracting thousands of visitors every year.
2. Dates and Schedule for Feria de Granada
The Feria de Granada usually occurs at the end of May or the beginning of June and lasts for a week. In 2023, the fair will be held from June 3rd to June 10th. The festival takes place in the Almanjayar neighborhood in Granada. There will be parades through the streets and a fairground. The week-long celebration also includes bullfights, flamenco shows, people dressed in traditional costumes, and live music performances.
3. Events and Attractions at Feria de Granada
The Feria de Granada is a vibrant celebration of culture and tradition. You will find a wide range of events and attractions, including:
I. The lighting ceremony (Alumbrao)- 3rd of June
The Feria de Granada starts with a traditional lighting ceremony at midnight on the first night of the festivities. To mark the start of the celebration of Corpus Christi, a well-known monument of the region is recreated in life-size and covered in lights every year, providing a dazzling spectacle. The fairgrounds are filled with around 70 tents, “casetas” in Spanish, decorated with traditional designs, flamenco decorations, and music, creating a festive atmosphere.
II. Tarasca procession – 7th of June
The Tarasca procession is one of the highlights of the Feria de Granada. This pagan-origin procession takes place in Plaza del Carmen on June 8th. It features a woman figure, the Tarasca, who symbolizes the victory of good over evil, of beauty over the beast. She is carried through the city streets on the back of a fierce-looking dragon. Also, she is accompanied by giants and people wearing large papier-maché heads, known as “cabezudos“. These characters depict historical figures of the city such as Catholic Monarchs. The procession is a sight to behold, with musicians and dancers following the Tarasca as it makes its way through the streets.
III. The Corpus Christi procession – 8th of June
The Corpus Christi procession is a grand event that takes place during the Feria de Granada. It is held 60 days after Easter Sunday, so in 2023 on Thursday, the 8th of June. It is a solemn religious procession that celebrates the Eucharist. The procession features an ornate float that is carried from the Cathedral through the streets of the city. The procession is accompanied by a large crowd of faithful followers. The Corpus Christi of Granada is a deeply spiritual and moving event that showcases the religious traditions and culture of the region, making it an important part of the Feria de Granada.
IV. Bullfighting and Flamenco
Bullfighting is an integral part of the Feria de Granada and takes place every year during the festival. The bullring is located near the city center, making it easily accessible. In addition, flamenco plays an important role in Andalusian culture and is celebrated throughout the Feria. You can enjoy live performances of flamenco music and dance in various venues throughout the city.
V. Fairground Rides
The Feria features a large fairground with a variety of rides and attractions for all ages. From traditional carousels and Ferris wheels to modern thrill rides, there is something for everyone. The prices are affordable and it will definitely take you back to your childhood years. The fairground is located in the Recinto Ferial in the Almanjáyar neighborhood.
VI. Traditional Food and Drink
The Feria is an excellent opportunity to sample some of the region’s traditional cuisine. You can enjoy a range of Spanish specialties, including tapas, paella, and churros, along with a variety of local beers, sangria, and wines. Make sure to try some typical dishes of Granada, such as “choto al ajillo”, “puchero”, “fritura de pescado”, and “espetos de sardinas”.
4. Where to Stay: Accommodation Options for Granada
Granada offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit all budgets and preferences. During the Feria, it is recommended to book accommodation in advance, as the festival attracts a large number of visitors. Some of the best areas to stay during Feria de Granada include the historic city center, the Albaicin neighborhood, and the Realejo neighborhood. These areas offer a range of accommodation options, from budget-friendly hostels to luxury hotels.
5. Getting to Granada
Granada is well-connected by air, train, and bus, making it easy to reach from other parts of Spain and Europe. The city’s airport is located just outside the city center and offers regular flights to major cities in Spain and Europe. The main train station is located near the city center and provides regular connections to Madrid, Barcelona, Malaga, and other major cities in Spain. There are also frequent bus connections to Granada from other cities in Spain. Once in Granada, it is easy to get around by public transport or on foot. The city has an extensive network of buses and subway lines.
6. What to Pack for Feria de Granada
When attending the Feria de Granada, it’s important to pack appropriately for the weather and the festivities. The festival takes place during early summer, so the weather is usually warm and sunny during the day and slightly cooler in the evenings. One item to consider packing is comfortable shoes since you’ll be doing a lot of walking during the festival. Consider bringing a pair of sandals or flats that you can wear for long periods of time. Furthermore, you will probably need sunscreen and a hat to protect your skin from the sun and heat.
The Fair of Granada is a celebration of traditional culture and dress, so consider packing or buying some traditional clothing to wear during the festival. Women often wear colorful flamenco dresses, while men wear traditional suits and hats. Finally, many of the vendors and attractions at the Feria do not accept credit cards, so it’s essential to have cash on hand. Consider bringing enough cash to cover your expenses for the week.
7. Insider’s Guide to Feria de Granada: Recommendations from Locals
To make the most of your visit to the Feria de Granada, here are some insider tips to keep in mind:
- Thursday 8th of June it’s a holiday in Granada which means that most shops are closed.
- You can enjoy the festivities of the Fair of Granada during the day but also at night!
- The Feria ends with a fireworks show on June 10th.
- It is recommended to go to Granada a few days before the Feria de Granada to have time to visit sightseeing. This way, during the week of the Feria, you can take your time and simply enjoy the festivities.
- Take the opportunity to immerse yourself in the culture by wearing traditional dress and attending cultural events.
- It is also an excellent opportunity to sample some of the region’s traditional cuisine. Be sure to try some of the local specialties, such as paella, tapas, and churros.
For an amazing food experience, you can join the Granada Tapas Tour.
Find more about Spanish cuisine and don’t miss the 8 traditional Spanish dishes you should try. And if you would like to see a flamenco show read about Flamenco Festivals in Granada: Top 3 you must join.