Festivities in Tenerife, Spain

January Festivities

5th January: Procession of the Three Kings through the principal streets of Puerto de la Cruz and Santa Cruz.

17th January : (on the nearest Sunday), Mass and cavalcade in honour of San Antonio Abad in Arona, (south Tenerife) accompanied by folklore groups. The programme includes presentation of cattle and a traditional Canary dance.

20th January: There are fiestas in Adeje, (south Tenerife), which involves the blessing of animals by the patron saint; also the coming down of the Virgin from her shrine to the sea.

February Festivities

23rd & 24th February: at night, election of the Carnival Queen in Santa Cruz and Puerto de la Cruz.

25th February: at night, Pre-festive cavalcade in Puerto de la Cruz, which includes the elected Queen and her court.

28th February: evening of Carnival Tuesday: Grand multitudinous cavalcade, (not to be missed) in Santa Cruz, accompanied by floats, musical dancers, musical clowns, musical groups generally, etc.

March Festivities

1st March: Burial of the sardine, (Carnival fiesta) ending on the fishing harbour in Puerto de la Cruz.

4th March: grand Carnival Parade in Puerto de la Cruz with attractive floats, dancing groups, and a multitude of people in fancy dress.

April Festivities

13th – 14 th April: on Mourn day Thursday and Good Friday in all island towns, there are processions to commemorate the Passion and Death of Christ.

17th – 16th April: in the city of La Laguna, fervour and tradition are the characteristics of these ceremonies. In an atmosphere of devout feeling, the coming ceremonies are announced, fallowed by diverse processions which take place throughout the week. The most solemn of all is the Holy Burial and Silent Procession; and it is one of the most important religious manifestations of the archipelago.

May Festivities

2nd May: There is a traditional folklore dance in Santa Cruz de Tenerife. People dress up in national costume and enjoy Canary food, wine and dancing.

3rd May: All over Tenerife, crosses indoors and out are adorned with flowers and other attractive adornments for the delight of the eyes.

In Puerto de la Cruz Mass is celebrated at the Parrish of Nuestra Señora de la Peña de Francia and followed immediately by a procession carrying the great Silver Cross, and accompanied by fire-works. Following tradition, people visit more than 30 chapels adorned with floral decorations. On this night, the town of Los Realejos (a few miles from Puerto) receives many visitors from other parts of the island, who meet here to watch the wonderful fireworks set off at the passing of the Cross through the streets called El Medio and El Sol. Beautiful floral decorations adorn the chapel altars in these two streets. As well as cultural and sporting activities, there is a “papada”, ( which is the cooking of many potatoes) and then they can be eaten by the public with “mojo”, which both streets offer visitors and garlanded cars from which pretty girls throw serpentine about the town.

June Festivities

2nd June is Corpus Christi. The town of Orotava venerates the Holiest, creating carpets out of flowers and other elements of nature which decorate the street floors over which the procession walks, watched by a multitude of people. The greatest and most beautiful flower carpet faces the Town Hall, a great fabricated tapestry representing different Bible scenes. This always takes place in the first week of June.

4th June: Marks the cavalcade of floats in agricultural style; it is a great tourist attraction which has been traditionally celebrated since the XVIIth century. There is also a folklore dance (in the streets) and cattle fair. These three events altogether mark the greatest attraction for the public. The town balconies hang out carpets, flags and shawls.

23rd June: Puerto de la Cruz. On the Eve of St. John, thousands of people on Punta Brava Beach and Playa Jardin beach meet to celebrate the fiesta held by the original island natives, the “Guanches”, who celebrated the arrival of summer. This fiesta lasts until nearly dawn and is accompanied by different ethnic musical bands. People bathe in the sea in the small hours, which the native did as a ritual of purification, and is still done. Coming out of the water, those feeling cold, warm up by the huge bonfires which are lit at midnight.

24th June: Puerto de la Cruz. On the Eve of St. John or the Sun festival, on the Puerto de la Cruz harbour we have the traditional bathing of the goats in the sea very early in the morning. The night before, thousands of local people camp on the beach and the harbour to watch the bonfires.

Icos de los Vinos: On the Eve of St. John, witchcraft takes over and bonfires are lit in the streets. Old bits of junk and wood are laid on the bonfire and a dummy called Juan, Juana or San Juanito is put on top and burnt. Huge balls of fire are rolled down the cliffs as part of the fiesta.

July Festivities

9th July: in the Plaza de Europa in Puerto de la Cruz, many people congregate dressed in national costume and enjoy a traditional Canary folklore dance.

16th July: In Puerto Santiago they have the fiesta of the embarkation of the Virgin del Carmen which finalizes with a spectacular show of fireworks.

2nd Week of July: La Laguna celebrates its yearly cavalcade, renowned for its interest for tourists. The seven islands are represented by seven women in typical Canary costume, carrying fruit and flowers as an offering to San Benito, the agricultural saint, accompanied by carts drawn by cattle, and musical groups which sing happy songs as they walk along.

August Festivities

15th August: this is the festivity of the Virgen de Candelaria, Patron saint of the Canary Islands, a fiesta which is devout and full of fervour. Many people congregate after hours walking over the hills in groups from different parts of the island to give cult to the Dark Virgin. In the morning, solemn Mass is celebrated after which there a procession with a floral is offering, accompanied by various folklore groups.

16th August Fiestas of San Roque in Garachico.

3rd Week of August: Icod de los Vinos: Famous cavalcade in the name of Santa Barbara. There is an offering of baskets and buns made at the church porch. The buns are little figures made in the shapes of animals adorned with multicoloured ribbons by the local artisans. Marriageable girls wear them on their heads as an offering to the Saint.

Last week of August: In Tejina is the festivity of St. Bartholomew also called the feast of Hearts. The streets are garlanded with hearts made of flowers and fruit.

Last Saturday of August: in Arafo they have the traditional cavalcade of San Agustin.

September Festivities

1st weekend of September: Los Cristianos, Festivity of the village, they have the fiesta of the embarkation of the Virgen del Carmen which finalizes with a spectacular show of fireworks.

17th September: This is a festivity in honour of the Holy Christ of La Laguna. It is an inexcusable date to enjoy the procession and fantastic firework castles.

21st September: Festivity in honour of the Holy Christ of Tacoronte.

October Festivities

In the 3rd week of October, there are fiestas in Santa Ursula with open air dances, food stalls and musical festivals.

November Festivities

29th & 30th November: The San Andres (Saint Andrew) fiestas in Icod are celebrated by young men and boys racing down a steep street on previously oiled boards. Wine cellars open up to offer new wine to the accompaniment of local folk music called “isles, folias and malagueñas”.

December Festivities

24th December: Puerto de la Cruz. In the Plaza de Europa, the celebration of the Midnight Mass for the Christ Child, and in most of the island churches.

31st December: In the Plaza del Charco and in most of the towns the New Year is met with much rejoicing and confetti, accompanied by various bands and open balls all night.