Fiestas and public holidays in Mallorca
Mallorcans love festivals and there are many throughout the year. They are celebrated and enjoyed with a passion that is one of the great character-giving traits of the island. Fiestas and public holidays fall generally into three categories. Those that are national Spanish holidays, those that are celebrated across Mallorca and the Balearics, and local fiestas specific to particular towns or regions.
The root of the fiestas lie both in religion and in old pagan traditions. While they have become popular with tourists, they remain to this day very much part of the Mallorcan culture and lifestyle. The themes and activities vary greatly and they are well worth attending and taking part in. There is usually food, drinking, dancing and, very often, fireworks. They are invariably entertaining at very least and some are quite spectacular events.
The main fiestas and public holidays in Mallorca
Fiestas and fieras in January
The Three Kings (Reyes Magos)5th January – across all of Spain, Three Kings is one of the main Christmas events and is when Christmas gifts are exchanged. The arrival of the Three Kings is celebrated with elaborate parades throughout the island with sweets being thrown to children in the crowds. Everyone gathers in the town square where gifts are given to the town’s children.
Three Kings mass and celebrations6th January – more a family day with mass, family lunches and further celebrations.
The fiestas of ‘San Antonio Abad’Mid January – the start of several days of some of the most engaging and entertaining festivals across the Island, focused on old towns such as Pollensa, Arta, Sa Pobla, Alaro and Binissalem. The event is slightly different in each but invariably involve bonfires and BBQs around the town, fireworks and the traditional dance of the “demonis” – local troops of mischievous devils.
Sant AntoniMid January – the “blessing of the animals” in the morning. Local town pets and livestock are taken to church to be blessed. Some towns have additional events relating to the festival.
Sant Sebastia3rd or 4th week of January – San Sebastian is the Patron Sant of Palma and the day’s celebrations include the Correfoc where devils and dragons dance through the street of Palma and Palma Old Town carrying fireworks and firestaffs. There are usually many other events in Palma running over several days. Stages are set up throughout the city for bands and musicians from all parts of Spain and sometimes further afield.
Sant Blai, Sant JoanOn or around 3rd February – a village celebration in Sant Joan village whereby the locals are anointed with the holy oil of Sant Blai in order to ward off sore throats. As with many such festivals, the theme might sound rather quaint and obtuse but they are invariably accompanied by dancing, drinking, local foods and generally good times.
Santa Eulalia2nd week February – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Shrove TuesdayLate February / early March – Shrove Tuesday falls on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday which is the first day of Lent in the Christian faith. Dates vary from year to year, but it usually falls in late February, sometimes early March. In Mallorca there is a ceremony, the burial of the sardine, accompanied by a mock funeral culminating in the sardine being thrown onto a large funeral pyre. This ceremony is the center point of a night of celebrating including BBQ’d sardines along with drinking and dancing.
Sa RuaFinal weekend before Lent – this is primarily a Palma event marked by bonfires, fancy dress and processions. The end of the carnival is marked by fancy dress balls just prior to Lent. The most spectacular is the Cavalcade Sa Rua in Palma.
Balearic Islands Day1st March – focused on Palma but celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Saint Joseph S’Alqueria BlancaOn or around 19th March – local fiesta in the pretty village of S’Alqueria Blanca in the southeast of Mallorca.
Easter WeekDate varies, usually in April but can be late March (see list of Public holidays for 2020). Comprises of “Saints Week” or “Semana Santa”, Saint Thursday, Saint Friday and Easter Monday. Easter is an important religious festival in Mallorca and falls on the first Sunday following the full moon that occurs on or following the spring equinox (late March). There are fiestas and events throughout the island. Processions and celebrations have different names such as Davallament in Pollensa, and Pancaritat and Fiesta of the Angel in Palma.
Sant Francesc fiestas1st week April – fiestas celebrated locally in different parts of Mallorca.
Sant Vicenc de sa Cala fiestas1st week April – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Palm Sunday2nd week April – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Sant Jordi fiestas.On or around 23rd April – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Firo de Soller2nd Sunday of May – local to Soller and Deia, the centerpiece of this fiesta is re-enactments of the battle between the Christians and the Moors but there are many other events and activities too.
Corpus Christi, Ball de les Aguiles, Pollensa2nd week June – this popular festival includes the ‘Dance of the Eagles’, performed in the main town square of Pollensa.
Sant Antoni de Juny, Arta2nd week June – celebration in Arta includes parades of locals dressed up as horses.
Fiesta of Sant Joan, MuroOn or around 24th June – local festival in Muro.
Festa del Sol que Bailla, Sant JoanOn or around 24th June – local festival in Sant Joan.
Festival of Sant Pere, Palma and Puerto AlcudiaLast week in June – local celebrations and festivals held in Palma and Puerto Alcudia.
Romeria de Sant Marcal, MarratxiLast week in June – market and exhibition of traditional ornaments and “siurell” (traditional clay figures).
Romeria a la Virgen de la Victoria, Alcudia1st / 2nd July – fiesta in Alcudia in the north of Mallorca. Religious ceremonies are complimented by dancing, a parade, fireworks, bands and more dancing!
Verge del CarmeOn or around 15th/16th July – the men of the sea celebrate their patron saint’s festivity, the Verge del Carme (Our Lady of Mount Carmel), and organise maritime processions and other festive and religious ceremonies in the main ports of the Island. A very colourful and enjoyable occasion.
Sant JaumeLast week in July – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Procesión Del Sant Crist, AlcudiaLast week in July – local celebration held every three years when it is said that in 1507 the figure of Christ in the parish church sweated blood and water and ended a long, harsh drought. Another good reason for a fiesta!
Santa Catalina Thomas fiestas, ValldemossaLate July – local celebration in Valldemossa
Sant Abdó I Sant Senén, IncaLast week in July – local festival in Inca with parades, local folk dancing and many other events and activities.
FornellsLast Sunday of July – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
Patrona de PollensaFirst week in August – re-enactment of the battle of the Moors and the Christians. This festival goes on for days – weeks in fact if you include the choosing of sides and various other preparations! This is one of the most colourful and exciting fiestas in the Mallorcan calendar, with many a grudge taken out during the mock battles.
Sant Salvador, ArtaOn or around 6th August – local festivities in Arta.
Sant Llorenc, SelvaOn or around 10th August – local festival in Selva
Mare De Déu D’Agost O Mare De Déu MortaMid August – local festivities in Caimari, Campos, Esporles, Es Molinar (Palma) and Sineu.
Sant RocOn or around 16th August – local festivities in Alaro, Porreres and other inland towns and villages – can last for several days.
Festes de Sant BartomeuLast week in August – celebration of Saint Bartomeu held throughout Mallorca and celebrated most actively in the old towns such as Soller, Pollensa and Santanyi.
Sant Agusti, FelanitxLate August – local festival in Felanitx.
Sant JoanLate August – local fiestas celebrated throughout Mallorca.
The fiesta of ‘Procession of the Beata’, Santa Margalida1st Sunday of September – celebration in Santa Margalida to celebrate the day that a nun, Catalina Tomas, was blessed in heaven by the Pope.
Sant Mateu fiestasOn or around 21st September – local festival in Bunyola.
‘Festa des Vermada’, BinissalemLast Sunday of September – a very colourful and fun festival in celebration of the grape harvest in Binissalem, the center of the wine industry in Mallorca. After the harvesting of the grapes a rocket is fired and the young villagers follow a drummer and piper to a field where there is an enormous grape fight!
Torrada d’es BotifarroFirst Sunday of the month – the Fiesta of the traditional Mallorcan black pudding. Butifarrones, slices of pork and sobrassada are roasted on BBQs and eaten with wine or beer.
Feria de Otoño y del Vino, ConcellUsually around the third weekend of the month. One of the main events of the year in Concell. A fun and activity packed fiera with plenty of celebrating going on. Feria de Otoño y del Vino, Concell
Feria del Pimentón, FelanitxSunday after the Fiesta of San Lucas – usually the third Sunday of the month. Outstanding fiera celebrating the red peppers from which paprika is made – the essential spcie in sobrasada. Feria del Pimentón, Felanitx
Feria de octubre de CamposLast weekend in October. Born out of a celebration of the wondrous thing that is spicy sobrasada sausage. A three day and broad-ranging celebration born out of the towns agricultural heritage. Feria de octubre de Campos
Santa Catalina Tomas ‘La Beateta’, Palma3rd Saturday of the month – local fiestas in Palma de Mallorca.
Sant Andreu fiestas, SantanyiEnd of the month – local fiestas in Santanyi.
Dijos Bo En Inca3rd Thursday of the month – local fiesta in Inca. Includes livestock competitions, musical and sports events.
Christmas24th December onwards – On Christmas Eve there is also the traditional Misa del Gallo, the Midnight Mass with recitals of local religious music dating back to the Middle Ages. Christmas Day itself is very much a traditional, family occasion. The Mallorcan Christmas continues with further celebrations including present-giving during Three Kings, which follows early in January.
New Year’s Eve celebrations31st December – parties and fireworks throughout the island plus, in Palma, ‘l’Estandard’, to honour the Christian conquest of Palma in 1229.
New Year’s Day1st January – mostly a much quieter, restful family day!
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