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Three things you didn’t know about Saint Jordi Day in Barcelona

By | 15 April, 2019 | 0 comments

On 23rd April 2019, Saint Jordi Day will be celebrated right across Barcelona in honour of the patron saint of Cataluña and one of the most highly awaited and special days for the region.

It’s one of those amazingly charming Spanish festivals that is kept alive to this day, always staying true to tradition and authenticity. It’s a chance for Catalans to take to the streets to celebrate Saint Jordi Day, all with their roses and books firmly in hand, so let’s explain what it’s all about…

sant jordi

Books and roses for everyone!

The day finds its traditional roots among all the couples in love in Cataluña. Proceedings see an exchange of gifts – a rose and a book – between each couple.

Every spring, on 23rd April, Catalans flock to buy their roses and books to prepare their special gifts. The city’s streets become filled with people strolling amongst the rose stalls and book stands that spring up all over the place. A beautiful gesture that’s full of tradition and has spread from only those in love to now include mothers, fathers and children.

Saint Jordi Day in Barcelona: World Book Day

The date itself is not wholly insignificant, as Shakespeare and Cervantes both died on 23rd April, so the day has been officially declared World Book Day.

As we said earlier, stalls full of books spring up throughout the city’s streets to commemorate this important event. If you’re visiting Barcelona at this time of year, we recommend taking a stroll alongLas Ramblas, Paseo de Gracia and Rambla de Catalunya, where you’ll see all the amazing stalls that are set up full of fantastic books and beautiful roses.

The legend of Saint Jordi

Saint Jordi Day is all part of legend involving princesses, knights and dragons. Legend has it that there once lived a fierce dragon that frightened the villagers in the town of Montblanc. Local people – anxious to avoid the dragon’s attacks – would offer up a young maiden every day, whose name would be drawn out of a hat. But one day, this raffle was ‘won’ by the town’s princess, and when she was handed over to the dragon and about to be devoured, Saint Jordi, a brave and valiant knight, fought and defeated the dragon by running his sword through its heart. The princess was rescued and in the dragon’s blood that flowed through the streets, a single rose started to bloom – that’s where the tradition of giving roses as gifts all comes from.

At the El Racó del Montblanc restaurant in our hotel, we’ll be offering a special menu to help guests celebrate Saint Jordi Day. You can make a reservation directly and enjoy celebrating Saint Jordi Day like the locals the next time you’re staying with us.

Categories: barcelona

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