Since ancient times, we welcome the summer solstice with celebrations of fire. We light bonfires the shortest night of the year in honour of the sun and to ward off evil spirits, and it is common to get rid of old furniture and unwanted items as a symbol of life renovation and purification. Saint John's Eve is a magical night where the city dresses in its best to celebrate the official beginning of summer, with fireworks, sparklers and dancing until sunrise.
The Revetlla de Sant Joan, the St. John's Eve celebrations, takes place on the evening of June 23rd, and it is a night full of rituals and a great tradition in our country. Bonfires, pyrotechnics and coca tarts are essential elements for this festivity that opens the heat season and where the calellenses and visitors share in a very special night.
Everything starts when the Flama del Canigó (Canigó flame) arrives in the city. It is a symbol of Catalan cultural identity, with the fire coming from the mountain's summit and which is used to light the Sant Joan bonfire on the seafront of the city. The sparklers and the colored fireworks explode around the bonfire and the popular festival begins with laughter and joy. Lights and banners decorate the streets where it’s tradition to have dinner with family, friends, neighbours and visitors. Near the sea, under the stars, we find the ideal place to share the traditional coca of Sant Joan and make a toast to the new summer. Of course, good company and fresh cava are the best accompaniment for these moments of happiness.
Happy Sant Joan for all!