While Christmas Eve is a family celebration, New Year’s Eve (called Nochebuena in Spanish) is a time for partying with friends. It is a night for throwing fiestas called “cotillones” or for gathering in town squares under the old clock tower waiting in anxious anticipation for it to strike twelve. According to tradition, observers must wolf down 12 grapes at this time to guarantee good fortune for the New Year.
Afterward, excited revelers often offer toasts to the New Year with glasses of cava. The festive spirit continues until the early morning and January 1st is a day of rest for those who have partied away the last night of the old year.
On December 31st, they celebrate the old night, or New Year’s Eve. the year is dismissed with family or with friends, but what cannot be missing are the twelve grapes, which the Spanish people eat together with the twelve strokes at midnight that mark the end of a year and the beginning of the New Year! Everyone also has to wear Red Knickers on New Year’s Eve!
On Jan. 5th, many make their way to their favorite bakeries to order a Roscón de Reyes (a ring-shaped cake eaten on Jan. 6th), which they will enjoy for breakfast the following day. Much more than a day for sweet traditions, the main focus here is on the kids, as parades roll through town in which the Reyes Magos (three kings) and their pages shower candy over delighted children. After all the high emotions, nervous kids will have a tough time falling asleep that night, particularly because the following morning is the feast day of the epiphany, when the three kings will traditionally arrive from the east to leave gifts for the well-behaved.
CasaLasDunas wishes you a Happy New Year 2018!