An ancestral tradition celebrating the arrival of summer in different parts of Aragon and Catalonia. Also known as the Fallas del Pirineo. UNESCO has declared these festivals to be intangible cultural heritage.
The festivals take place around the midsummer solstice, a magical time of year which is marked in the Pyrenees with rituals centred around fire. Depending on the traditions of each village, the participants come down from the highest point carrying flaming home-made torches (fallas), drawing shapes in the air with fire, dancing, or lighting a large bonfire in the village square. These rites are passed down through the generations, and different villages regard them as symbolising the transition to adulthood, purification or fertility. In Aragon, the festival is celebrated in several villages in the Sobrarbe and Ribagorza regions. In Catalonia, the celebrations can be seen in the regions of Alta Ribagorza, Berguedá, Pallars Jussà, Pallars Sobirá and Val d’Aran.
Fire festivals for the summer solstice in the Pyrenees
The Sobrarbe and Ribagorza regions (Aragon) and the Alta Ribagorza, Berguedá, Pallars Jussà, Pallars Sobirá and Val d'Aran regions (Catalonia)