Christmas is a magical time of year. If you are in Alicante or are coming here soon, you should know that the city is getting ready to make sure you have a wonderful time with plenty to see and do. Children take centre stage and there will be lots of fun and entertainment for the whole family.
CHRISTMAS IN ALICANTE
Christmas begins on 6th December
Moors and Christians Parade
That afternoon, the Moors and Christians Parade also takes to the street, a dazzling spectacle of colourful costumes and festive music.
Legend has it that Saint Nicholas sets out from Alicante loaded up with toys for children in the Netherlands. Alicante wanted to reaffirm this legend and so Santa Claus has made his home in the city and spends the winter there getting ready for his magical trip.
Alicante, the home of Santa Claus
In La Ereta Park, by the foot of the Castle of Santa Bárbara, Santa Claus lives in a house with views out over the Mediterranean. And at Christmas, Alicante opens his home up to visitors. A Page will accompany you to the place where Santa Claus asks children: have you been good? A wishing well, and entertainment will make your visit truly wonderful.
When in Alicante, you can enjoy a ‘White Christmas’ in a Mediterranean climate thanks to the ice rink in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento square. This becomes a magical place, filled with coloured lights and a huge fir tree. All so you can enjoy an activity that’s fun for the whole family.
Christmas comes to the Plaza de Gabriel Miró square in the form of Nazareth Market and a Nativity Play. In the middle of December, over the course of 4 days, there are stalls with arts and crafts, food, shows, workshops, and farm animals.From the end of November up to mid January, in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento square, you’ll find the Cascaruja Market, with stalls selling Christmas goodies and sweets like Alicante’s famous turrón (nougat). From December up until 6th January, set up along the avenue known as Avenida de Federico Soto, the Christmas Artisan Market sells decorations, precious metal objects, and nativity scenes. And from 20th to 24th December, why not visit the Cascaruja y Porrate Christmas Market.
Visit the Nativity Scenes
From the start of December you can visit the different nativity scenes set up around the city. There is a Panoramic Nativity Scene in the CAM Cultural Centre. On the ground floor of Alicante City Hall you will find the Municipal Nativity Scene and there is another in the Plaza de la Montañeta square. Collections of nativity scenes are also exhibited in the offices of the Provincial Council (Palacio de la Diputación). And all year round you can visit the Nativity Scene Museum on Calle San Agustín street, right in the heart of the Old Town.
Fairground and children’s rides
The Christmas Fairground with rides for children and grown-ups is a classic attraction at this time of year. It is set up in the Rabasa estate in December. You can also visit the Christmas exhibition known as Exponadal at IFA from 26th December. This is a large venue where children can enjoy rides, games, workshops, and a circus.
Party to welcome in the New Year
New Year’s Eve is a magical night. If you’re coming to spend this special day here, you ought to know that every year Alicante welcomes in the New Year with its eyes fixed on the clock tower of the city’s baroque City Hall building. Starting at 11 p.m., there is entertainment in the square and little bags of lucky grapes are handed out to be eaten as the clock strikes midnight.
Royal Postal carriers and the Epiphany Parade
Every 5th January, Alicante comes alive with excitement as the three Kings of the Orient bring magic and surprises in the Epiphany Parade. They arrive at the Bullring where they greet the children, before moving onto the Plaza de Luceros square from where the parade sets out. Many neighbourhoods also hold their own parades. According to tradition, you should eat the traditional sweet pastry known as Roscón de Reyes with chocolate. The day before, you can enjoy the Parade of the Royal Pages with dancing, music, and entertainment for the children. Christmas in Alicante is magical and special.