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Christmas lights on the Calle Gran Vía, Madrid.

Experience the magic of Christmas lights in these Spanish cities

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Travelling at Christmas is always special. Cities exude charm like at no other time of the year. From the end of November, the streets of Spain start to light up with thousands of coloured bulbs and traditional street markets. You can also admire the stunning Nativity scenes, Three Kings Parade on 5 January, ice-skating rinks and the wonderful aroma of roast chestnuts and churros for sharing in good company. We reveal to you which cities in Spain have a great Christmas atmosphere and the most incredible sparkle about them. Happy holidays!

  • Photos of Christmas lights in Madrid

    Madrid

    It’s impossible not to include the Spanish capital in this list. With its legendary market in the Plaza Mayor, which is centuries old, and the thousands of lights created by different artists and designers adorning the city. Take a stroll around the renovated Plaza de España, along the Plaza de Callao, Gran Vía, the Puerta del Sol or the Puerta de Alcalá to admire the glorious illuminated fir trees and Nativity scenes. And take a stop at the Metropolis Building to take a selfie next to the Giant Christmas Ball.More ideas? Don’t miss the spectacular “Naturaleza Encendida” light show in the Royal Botanical Gardens, visit the Christmas House inhabited by Father Christmas in the Real Casa de Correos, hop aboard the “Naviluz” Christmas bus, see out the year with 12 lucky grapes as the clock chimes midnight at the Puerta del Sol, cheer like a child at the Three Kings Parade or savour the best hot chocolate and churros you have ever tasted at San Ginés chocolate shop. You’ll have the time of your life!

  • Barcelona

    Once the Christmas lights have been switched on, the squares of La Mercè in Ciutat Vella, Fort Pienc in the Eixample, the Calle Major in Nou Barris, Plaza Orfila in St. Andreu and Plaza Comas in Les Corts are totally transformed.If you want to visit a very special Christmas market, don’t miss the one at Santa Llúcia, which has taken place around the cathedral since 1786. There is also a Christmas market next to the Sagrada Familia, and in Plaça Catalunya there is a fair promoting responsible consumption. And if you want to see a Living Nativity, you will love the one in the Poble Espanyol.Looking for more Christmas experiences in Barcelona? Be enchanted by the music of Beethoven or Schubert at the Palau de la Música Catalana or the Liceu or take the children to some of the workshops at La Pedrera, one of the most stunning buildings designed by Gaudí. Happy Holidays!

  • Calle Larios decked out with Christmas decorations in Malaga, Andalusia

    Malaga

    This image of Calle Larios has become one of the most famous Christmas scenes in all of Spain. No one wants to miss out on seeing this shopping area lit up with an incredible spectacle of light and music that surprises everyone who visits it.What’s more, in Malaga you can also visit flamenco or classical music shows in the theatres, or buy souvenirs in the craft markets at La Malagueta or the bohemian district of Soho. And naturally, you simply do not want to miss the municipal Nativity scene in the area of the Patio de Banderas at the City Hall, which is reinvented year after year.

  • Vigo

    The streets of this Galician city are lit up with over 11 million LED lights. A giant Christmas present is placed in the Gran Vía, a giant Christmas bauble in La Farola de Urzáiz and Vigo is transformed into a enormous amusement park. One of the most eye-catching attractions is the giant Ferris wheel in the Plaza de Compostela, where you can also find the Christmas “Cíes Market” or ride a sledge on artificial snow.In the central street of Rosalía de Castro you can try a virtual simulator with Christmas animations, in the Plaza Mestre Prudencio Rodríguez there is a traditional Christmas circus and in the pedestrian area of O Calvario a traditional market takes place.If you pass by the Royal Yacht Club there is an 800-metre square skating rink. And to top it all, there are several tourist trains covering Vigo. There’s no chance of feeling bored here.

  • Photos of Christmas lights in Valencia

    Valencia

    This Mediterranean city is also a perfect place to spend an unforgettable Christmas. Valencia is filled with markets like the Craft Fair in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento, where a giant skating rink is installed and there is an audiovisual show with two giant moving balls and music. On the other hand, you can also take a stroll around the Craft Stalls in Colón Market. There is a big tradition in this city for making artisan Nativity scenes. So you don't miss the most beautiful ones, up to four routes have been created to discover, for example, the great Nativity of life-size figures in La plaza de la Reina. Another idea you are bound to love is the Christmas Concert that takes place in the Royal College de las Escuelas Pías. If you are travelling with children, you simply have to visit the Funfair that is installed near the Clock Tower in the Juan Carlos I Royal Marina.

  • Zaragoza

    A huge illuminated ball in La Plaza del Pilar welcomes you to this city with a light and sound show. This has to be the tourist centre of Zaragoza and one of its prettiest spaces. You can also find a market here, along with a Father Christmas village and a giant Nativity scene.You can enjoy the magic of the lights along Paseo de la Independencia, the blanket of lights on Calle de Alfonso I and the colourful Northern lights in Plaza de San Felipe. In Plaza de Basilio Paraíso you have to stop and take a selfie next to the giant Christmas tree. More ideas? Attend the light projections on the façades of the Estación del Norte and Universidad civic centres.

These are just some examples of Spanish cities that are perfect for visiting at Christmas. Although there are many more, such as Seville, Granada, Santander, Oviedo

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