Well, the 15th August is indeed an official Spanish national holiday. And with the huge Malaga feria scheduled to start this coming weekend, it would be tempting for the uninitiated to think that local business closures add up to nothing more than an excuse to attend the first day – and night – of the biggest annual party in Andalucia. But they’d be wrong!
The real reason people in Andalucia, and all over the country, are given a convenient summer’s day off is so that, in theory at least, they can go to church to celebrate the ‘Feast of the Assumption’ – the day when Catholics all over the world hold mass every hour to honour the Virgin Mary being raised body and soul up to Heaven after her death.
The Feast of the Assumption was first formally celebrated in the 18th century, but it was not until 1950 that Pope Pius XII declared that it should become fixed in the church calendar as an essential tenet of the Roman Catholic faith.
Celebrations include performances of a centuries-old genre of Spanish music, called ‘La Verbena de la Paloma’, and in every town and city there are family-friendly activities including colourful processions, street fairs – and the inevitable festive eating, drinking and dancing that the Spanish hold so dear to their hearts!
Everyone is welcome to join in, so why not make the festival part of your holiday at Club La Costa World resort? You can also impress your friends and family with a little extra knowledge as to why people living and working in Spain – not to mention the holidaymakers – get to enjoy another long weekend with a party to boot!
Note: although 15th August is an official Bank Holiday, you will probably find that most of the local shops are open as usual, apart from the Mercadona supermarket chain, whose stores will only open for the morning (until 2pm) subject to location.