Me encanta Navidad!! Christmas is the best, I love the decorations, the festive atmosphere, the excuse to warm up with mulled wine, and how everything seems a lot more cheerful (dreading the cold days of January and February without the festivities to keep me in a good mood…)
And one of the best things about Christmas is the markets – they’re always tacky, busy, but so much fun to wander around with friends. In the U.K we like to stick to “German” Christmas markets, but in Spain they stick to their own traditions. And Catalonia in particular keep their own traditions!
The Fira de Santa Lucia Market is found every year outside the Cathedral in the Gothic Quarter. It mostly sells decorations, but also handmade gifts if you want to buy someone something special.
You will find A LOT of these little log guys for sale. This is the Catalan Santa Claus, of sorts. His name is Caga Tio, and throughout December the children are supposed to feed him food to represent prosperity. He has a blanket to cover him, and he gets “fatter and fatter” (aka the presents build up under the blanket), until Christmas eve when the children hit him with sticks and sing a song.
The next morning he has “pooped” out their presents. No lie.
That is why a typical souvenir to find in Catalonia are pooping figurines, it’s an inside joke…
I bought myself a little Caga Tio to take home and show my family. I have a feeling my dog won’t be his friend though…
Placa Sant Jaume always has a unique nativity scene on display. This year it is a series of snow globes that tell a story. The square is also lit up bright, and the streets that trail off it are also filled with Christmas lights.
All in all, I love Barcelona this time of year! Bon Nadal!