It's already Christmas in San Sebastian

Live Christmas in San Sebastian

You may be thinking that this year there is no reason to celebrate – it is true, we are just recovering from a terrible pandemic −. Or maybe you think that Christmas is for children and you are no longer. However, in Lacunza IH We are convinced that precisely because of all this this year we have to celebrate more than ever: enjoy this new beginning and live this Christmas with the illusion of when we were children, as if it were the first time. Let the spirit of these holidays illuminate you. Join us and we will tell you how to live an authentic San Sebastian Christmas.

The beginning of the festivities is marked by the lights on and the Christmas tree the first days of December. Also around the same dates, the Christmas market which preserves the style of the most famous traditional Christmas markets in Europe. This market is installed in different parts of the city, but most of the stalls are on the Paseo de Francia, next to the Urumea river, very close to our school. In the stalls you will find: quality craft products, original Christmas decorations, local fashion, handmade toys, roasted chestnuts, cider, hot chocolate, typical Basque sweets such as pantxinetas, goxuas, cake basque... An experience for the senses! This market is meeting point between artisans and buyers, who can thus purchase the products directly from the people who have made them, learn about the creation and manufacturing process. In short, contribute to making crafts a sustainable activity.

Santo Tomás, a very traditional festival

In San Sebastián and other Basque towns, the Winter Solstice coincides with the feast of Santo Tomás on the day December 21. That day, traditional markets and fairs are organized in which the best agricultural products of the season are bought and sold, there are also exhibitions and contests, musical performances, popular dances, etc. Here it is known as the Santo Tomas Fair. Apparently, its origin dates back to the XNUMXth century. When most of the landlords or baserritarras – the name by which the Basque peasants are called – rented the land they cultivated and the cattle they cared for.

  • In December they used to go to the city where the owners of the farms lived to pay their rent. As payment they delivered part of the autumn harvest. During their stay in the city they took the opportunity to sell their products and stock up on what was not available in their villages. This is how the fairs arose. With the passage of time, this need ceased to be and became a deep-rooted tradition to this day.
  • For this reason, to celebrate the day of Saint Thomas, the people of San Sebastian dress up as 'caseros', with the typical costumes of the Basque peasants.
  • He is also famous joke contest (from Basque txistor, 'longaniza') in which dozens of people participate each year.

Other plans to enjoy the Christmas holidays:

  • attend one of the many christmas concerts that are organized in different places: churches, Victoria Eugenia theater or Kursaal Auditorium. In this land there is love and musical sensitivity. It is not strange to find during these days groups of musicians or small choirs that go through the streets of San Sebastián playing and singing traditional Christmas carols.
  • Visit Belén for the Gipuzkoa square, a Christmas classic.
  • See the Olentzero and Mari Domingui horseback riding, who come down from their farmhouses to bring gifts on the night of December 24, or the Magic kings's horse riding, who arrive from the East every year willing to spread excitement among the people of San Sebastián.
  • And, of course, practice sports. Another of the great hobbies that exist in this city. You have many options: ice skating, running in the popular San Silvestre Race on December 31 or climb the mountain and toast the new year.

What are you waiting for? This year, experience Christmas in San Sebastián.

Lacunza IH wish your students

 a very Merry Christmas or with a prosperous 2022.