Los Tres Reyes, a Spanish Christmas Tradition

  • Los-Tres-reyes-ALBA

Los Tres Reyes, a very old tradition in Spain.

Los-Tres-reyes-ALBA

Los Tres Reyes celebrated on the 6th of January

Los Tres Reyes (Three Kings), otherwise known as the Epiphany, are named Melchior, Caspar, and Balthazar. This holiday, 6 th of January, is celebrated much more widely than Christmas over here, and it’s the big gift-giving and family- oriented day. It marks the biblical adoration of baby Jesus by these Wise Men. The Bible says that they found the child by following a star across the desert to Bethlehem.


Los-Tres-Reyes-star

But where in the world is this tradition of Los Tres Reyes celebrated?

In Europe, countries like Belgium, Poland, Germany, France, Italy or Germany celebrate it, but it’s more common in Hispanic countries in South America: Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Venezuela, Paraguay, Puerto Rico or Cuba. It is celebrated even in the
Philippines, old Spanish colony.


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The parade of Los Tres Reyes

On the night of January 5th there is a parade to celebrate the arrival of Los Tres Reyes. Each city, town and village in Spain organizes their own parade to celebrate the Kings’ arrival and, for the kids, this is like Santa Claus arriving with all the presents. In Barcelona, the Kings arrive by boat down at the port and then the parade lasts for a couple of hours throughout the city, with thousands of people on the streets and all the kids lighting the way of the Kings with their special lanterns that they have made in school. You can check here the route that is planned for the arrival of the Kings on the 5th.

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Roscón de Reyes: the best treat to celebrate this holiday

When kids and adults wake up on January 6th, after opening their presents, they eat this delicious kind of sponge cake. But its origin goes back to the Roman times, during which it was part of the holiday saturnalia, a holiday in honor to the
agriculture god Saturn.

In Spain it was introduced by the king Philip V and the nobility loved it. The biggest cities in Spain adopted it and the tradition was spread to the Spanish colonies in America.

These days, the Roscón de Reyes has inside a king’s figurine and a bean. The person who finds the figurine will be lucky all year and the person who finds the bean will have to pay the Roscón.

The celebration of Los Tres Reyes ends Christmas in Spain but, the day after the biggest sales of the year start. Stay tunned!

2019-11-27T14:43:52+01:00Traditions|

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