It is one of the most eye catching festivals in Barcelona the annual Festa Major de Gràcia. From August 15th through August 21st, the streets of Barcelona’s usually quiet, bohemian Gràcia district come alive with parades, human tower demonstrations, music, food parties, wine tastings, spectacular fireruns called Correfoc -where people dress as devils and shoot off fireworks on the beat of drums- and last but certainly not least Gràcia’s contest for the best decorated street.
Don’t take that lightly though, the prize of Best Decorated Street in Gràcia is taken very seriously over here. They have to pick themes, make the artwork and put in a lot of hard work and effort to succeed in this competition. Every year around 20 streets participate in a frenzy of artistic decoration that glams up Gràcia’s streets in such a colorful and often elaborate fashion only comparable to Carnaval parades.
Though Festa Major de Gràcia is not solely a feast the eyes, your ears and taste buds have also plenty to choose from. In the streets people sit, eat and drink together to celebrate their neighborhood. That sums up the spirit of the Festa Major in general: to get everyone together and rejoice in being a part of the local community and its traditions. People outside of the neighborhood are invited to take part in the celebrations. For the inhabitants the celebration is a factor of prestige and promotion for the neighborhood and Gràcia certainly does it in style.
Festa Major de Gràcia starts on August 15th, known as the Day of Assumption, a public holiday in Barcelona with a huge parade with gegants (giants), cagrossos (big heads) and dracs (dragons) and lots of other activities and parties. Don’t forget to take photos and to send them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is so much to see and do that I recommend to read the program first on-line or if this is not your style just to go to the Gràcia neighborhood and explore the colorful streets yourself to see what shows up around every corner either to watch or join in and have tons of fun along the way.
Metro: metro station Lesseps (L3), Diagonal (L3 or L5), Fontana (L3)
Program (in Catalan)
Festa Major map of Gracia