FROM THE FIESTAS OF BAYONNE TO THE SEMANA GRANDE IN SAN SEBASTIAN…A PEOPLE IN CELEBRATION!

Frenzy sweeps through the Basque Country

Bayonne and its 1,000,000 visitors, Pamplona, the big sister with its “Encierros”, the tuna festival in Saint Jean de Luz, the “Sardinades” in San Juan, and the “Semana-Grande” in San Sebastian Donostia… all the towns, villages and market towns on both sides of the border experience the frenzy of popular festivals and allow everyone to unite, without exception.

The white and red “Feystares ” of Pamplona or Bayonne are a form of communion for an entire people, but also a way of welcoming tourists and merrymakers… Balls, attractions and all kinds of entertainment unite the locals with their ancestral traditions…Basque games of strength, dances, King Léon, fireworks… are the hallmark of the Basque Country, of its towns and fields, where people, sometimes a little rough around the edges, are capable of the greatest generosity and joie de vivre. So, during the SEMANA GRANDE celebrations in Donostia, don’t hesitate to immerse yourself in these unique moments, in the bend of a village, or a large town… let yourself be carried away by the Basque spirit…

san juan Dance of the Cabezudos

history of San Sebastian SEMANA GRANDE los fuegos

Disfruta de los fuegos artificiales de San Sebastián desde el mar - Spirit Experiences

In 1876, after the Third Carlist War, the city of San Sebastian needed to regain the lost tourist activity that had been a major source of revenue. Entrepreneur José Arana, with the help of architect José Goicoa, had the Atocha bullring built in record time (at the time, “tauromania” was all the rage: let’s not forget Carmen, Malarmé or Flaubert…). ) Semana Grande is closely linked to the bullfighting festival. Arana created the slogans “Semana Monumental” and “Gran Semana”, and from 1879 onwards decided to call the week “la semana Grande”. Advertising and posters were stuck up all over the Basque Country, in Aragon, La Rioja, Navarre and the bordering provinces of southern France. A few years later, the San Sebastian City Council joined in, organizing alternative activities such as music, dancing, fireworks, etc., and little by little, the “semana Grande” came to be known as the “semana of the Basque Country”. Semana Grande de Donostia has become the province’s capital city’s most popular summer date.

FESTIVITIES ON BOTH SIDES OF THE BORDER

San Juan Sardinadas

affiche saint jean de luz la peche au thon

Tuna festival Saint jean de Luz

Irun Fiestas de San Marcial

Irun Fiestas de San Marcial

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