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Los Reyes Magos announce their arrival by means of a six-hour long journey through Seville known as La Cabalgata de Los Reyes . Umbrellas are a traditional way for children to catch the candy that is thrown from the floats in the cabalgata, the parade held on Noche de Reyes, the eve of Three Kings Day. It's difficult to prepare at home, and the most sought-after bakeries have their stocks reserved weeks before Kings' Day. Each city and town hosts its own parade on the eve of Three Kings' Day, called the cabalgata, to celebrate the arrival of the Three Kings into Spain from their long journey. Embedded inside is a plastic little king or queen and whoever finds it is monarch for the day, meaning they are entitled to be waited on hand and foot. From Spain to Puerto Rico to American cities like Miami and New York with significant Catholic, Spanish speaking populations, Three Kings' Day is often honored. The three kings are always features in the Christmas nativity scene – or “Belén” (Spanish for Bethlehem). In Spain ‘Los Reyes Magos’ - Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar - play a similar role to Santa Claus in many other parts of the world. Following routes through the main city plazas, the kings ride trucks, trailers, or floats (depending on the region) tossing candy to children as they ride by. On the twelfth day of Christmas, , we celebrate Three Kings Day! While the holiday season in the U.S. normally ends right after the New Year, the winter vacation in Spain lasts until Three Kings' Day. In Spanish tradition, the Three Kings are given names: Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthazar. How Spain's Three Kings Festival is Celebrated. The Three Kings in the Spanish Epiphany are: According to the Bible, these three men traveled from around the world to Bethlehem to bring gifts to the newborn Jesus. MADRID, Jan 6 ― For children, it's the most wonderful time of the year, when Spaniards turn out to welcome the gift-laden Three Kings. In Alcoy, old folk and youngsters alike live Christmas and the arrival of the Three Wise Men with special excitement. Some big towns and cities have Epiphany Parades with each King having a big float that is shaped like a camel. This is the day that families get together for a huge feast, unwrap presents (brought by the Three Wise Men/Kings… The 5 th January is an important day in Spain celebrates the end of Christmas with a huge party called the three kings day or the three wise men their names are Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar.. In major destinations such as Madrid and Barcelona, the sweet-throwing Kings’ parades attract crowds of hundreds of thousands and are televised across the country, but every Spanish town and city stages some kind of celebration on January 5th. This is a list of Spanish monarchs, that is, rulers of the country of Spain in the modern sense of the word. The Cavalcade of the Magi parades are traditionally held in cities across Spain on January 5, the evening before Epiphany, sometimes called Three Kings' Day, with costumed performers riding through the streets on floats, while handing out sweets to children lining the route. In Greece, swimming competitions have people dive into the water to retrieve crosses that have been thrown in, which represents the baptism of Jesus. There is abundant eating and drinking and the traditional cake is called the Roscon de Reyes, a circular sweet bread sprinkled with sugar and dried fruits. The Three Wise Men flew over Seville in a hot air balloon on Tuesday morning, after traditional street parades on the eve of the Epiphany were cancelled throughout Spain … The most exciting part of the cake is that two small items are baked inside of it, traditionally a small figurine of baby Jesus and a bean, although they vary. In Italy and Greece, the Epiphany is celebrated in different ways. As it is a tradition that has been celebrated in Spain for many centuries, most Spanish-speaking countries in the West also celebrate Three Kings' Day. The Kings throw out candy to the excited spectators, who then rush home to bed so the Kings can visit and leave their presents. More than 200,000 people give it a try in Zocalo Square in Mexico City. Good kids get presents and bad kids are supposed to receive a lump of coal. SPAIN’S first black member of the Lower House of Congress has attacked an Alicante Council video promoting the ‘Three Kings’ which has a white man ‘blacked-up’. It is often topped with glazed fruits, representing the colorful jewels on a crown, and sometimes filled with whipped cream. If you're in Spain during the holidays, you'll have to seek out a slice at a high-quality bakery. Read on to learn more a… A bakery in Madrid features its traditional Rosca de Reyes breads for sale in anticipation of Three Kings Day. The three kings or wise men perform the same role as Santa Claus at Christmas, so on the evening of the 5th children are supposed to leave a cleaned pair of shoes outside their doors for the nocturnal visitors to fill with gifts. This is Spain’s oldest parade, held since 1885. Many Spaniards love their holiday lottery, and the holiday draw right before Christmas Day is considered to be the largest lottery in the world based on total payout. In Spain, he's known as Papá Noel, and arrives on a sleigh with reindeer just as in other parts of the world. In Spain, jolly old St. Nick takes a backseat to the Three Kings of biblical lore, sometimes referred to as the Three Wise Men in English. THE 6TH OF JANUARY IN ANDALUCIA Breakfast is a special occasion on January 6th with the Three Kings’ Cake (Roscón de Reyes) the centre of attention. Many are the territories that give themselves the title of being the first to celebrate the night of the Three Kings. Often the Kings (Wise Men) throw out candy to the children watching the parade. Sometimes there are also real camels in the parade. From Monday, January 4th, new restriction measures regarding movement have … Traditionally, Santa arrives in secret sometime in the night, stealthily sliding down chimneys while everyone is fast asleep. To allow us to provide a better and more tailored experience please click "OK", A Kings' Day parade in Granada, Spain; StockphotoVideo/Shutterstock, A Kings’ Day parade in the Andalusian town of Velez-Málaga; Antonio Martin/Shutterstock, More Spanish children prefer receiving gifts from the three kings than from Santa Claus; Free-Photos/pixabay. The forerunners of the monarchs of the Spanish throne were the following: The ring-shaped pastry is decorated to look like a crown that a king would wear. In Spain, epiphany is the main Christmas holiday. Mechanised floats bearing effigies of Melchior (Arabia), Caspar (the Orient) and Balthazar (Africa) – or real life versions of the wise men played by members of the local council – and various other brightly-costumed participants trundle down major streets; as they pass, they throw out handfuls of sweets that rain down on the spectators gathered to watch their grand entry into the town. Also referred to as the Feast of the Epiphany, this biblical holiday is celebrated each year on January 6 in Spain and many other Spanish-speaking countries. El Corte Inglés As per tradition, El Corte Inglés will kick off their seasonal sales on January 7th in all their department stores, and discounts will continue right through until the end of February, as outlined on their official website. For decades, Santa was a tradition reserved for the countries of Northern Europe and North America, but as U.S. traditions have become more and more widespread, it's not uncommon for children to receive a few smaller gifts on Christmas as well. In fact, a 2015 survey by Spanish toymakers association AEFJ showed that the colourful kings, or Magis as they’re sometimes called, are far more popular than Papa Noel amongst Spanish children: 68% said they preferred receiving presents from the wise men, with only 27% rooting for Father Christmas. Getty Images. What’s more, they don’t receive presents from Santa Claus, but from the Three Kings. Learn about the three wise men — Melchor, Gaspar, and Baltasar — and other Spanish Christmas traditions. Damian Corrigan is a travel writer who has traveled extensively throughout Spain since moving there in 2003. If you find the bean, however, it's your responsibility to pay for the roscón. In Ireland, the day is known as Little Christmas. More than 200,000 people give it a try in Zocalo Square in Mexico City. Three Kings to travel to Sevilla in hot-air balloon this January. The central part of the Three King’s celebration in Seville, and most other parts of Spain, is the huge parade that winds through the streets of the city on the 5th of January. In Puerto Rico, Ortiz says that the holiday is celebrated for an additional eight days afterwards, known as Octavitas. This is a sweet bread that is adorned with dried fruits and sugar. The sweets are supposedly just for kids, for whom this annual holiday has become the biggest deal for. In Mexico, for example, a mile-long “Rosca de Reyes” cake is made to celebrate the holiday. Do you want to learn more about the Three kings day in Spain? Celebrated over two days, Spain’s annual Three Kings Festival (Fiesta de los Reyes) features colourful street parades, a delicious cake with a surprise hidden inside and a vibrant display of brightly illuminated costumes. According to Christian tradition, this was the day that Melchior (known as Melchor in Spanish), Caspar (Gaspar), and Balthasar (Baltasar) came to visit the baby Jesus and brought their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. The day of the Epiphany occurs on 6 January, and is said to be the day when the Three Kings or Wise Men arrived in Bethlehem to give their gifts to baby Jesus. On the evening of January 5th every year, Spanish towns and cities are given over to the colourful parades of the Dia de los Reyes, or the Kings’ Day – a celebration of the arrival of the three wise men in Bethlehem after Jesus’ birth. Celebrated most in Spain and Latin America, but also across Europe, “El Dia de los Reyes”, as it’s called in Spanish, marks the adoration of baby Jesus by the three wise men. Hidden inside the cake is also a bean, the unfortunate recipient of which has to buy the Roscon the following year. Despite this, officially, the Spanish government held the first parade during the Christmas holidays in 1885. Once the end-of-the-year parties are over and the New Year begins, in Spain, the children are still waiting for the most important day of the holiday season. ON January 6, when many children in Spain traditionally receive their gifts, many families enjoy the ‘Roscon de Reyes’, a ring-shaped cake representing a crown. The tradition here in Spain is that Los Reyes Magos, known as the Three Wise Men or the Three Kings in English, bring Spanish children their gifts on the Day of the Epiphany, January 6th. That might not be such a bad thing though, as some bakeries have been known to bake diamonds and cheques worth thousands of euros into the cakes, as well as mini monarchs and beans. On the morning of Three Kings' Day, after the kids have feverishly opened up all of their gifts, parents sit in front of the television hoping to hear their ticket number called as the winner of El Gordo, "the big one.". The atmosphere is friendly and family orientated – a little like Semana Santa but minus the atmosphere of sombre religiosity – and the parades usually happen early evening so young children can watch them before going to bed. On Christmas Eve, families do host a big family dinner, which always begins with some cured hams and cheeses as appetizers and ends with turrón, a holiday candy made from almonds. Here's a look at some of the main restrictions to take note of. As it is a tradition that has been celebrated in Spain for many centuries, most Spanish-speaking countries in the West also celebrate Three Kings' Day. If you're given a slice and find the figurine, it means you'll have good luck for the rest of the year. A couple of weeks later, on January 6, Spain plays its second-largest lottery of the year, called El Niño. As you're walking through any Spanish city in the days leading up to January 6, you'll see lines at national lottery stores and individuals peddling tickets in the street. In Spain , this day is known as Kings' Day or the Día de Los Reyes, and is celebrated just like a second Christmas, with feasting and … The Three Kings’ Day (el día de los Reyes Magos) celebrates the Epiphany on January 6th, and is the real Christmas Day (celebration wise) for most Spaniards. Whether or not they were actually kings is up for debate, but their legend of gift-giving has lived on. 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