Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña

Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña
It celebrates: 23rd June
Place: Coruña, A (Coruña)
Category: Tradition
Popularity: (****) 4/5
Organize: The San Juan Bonfires Promotion Commission
Known start date: Since 1962
Figure of protection: Festival of International Tourist Interest (since 2015) and Festival of National Tourist Interest (since 2003)
FireInternational Tourist InterestNational Tourist Interest
Reading time: 4 minutes

The Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña are a tradition that has been celebrated since 1962 to celebrate the arrival of the summer solstice, on the night of San Juan Join us and join this great festive day!

What are the Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña?

It is a festival that celebrates the beginning of the summer solstice with various rites and customs such as purification baths and fertility spells.

This great celebration culminates with the burning of the bonfire or falla mayor. About a hundred thousand people, including locals and visitors, gather to celebrate the magical night of the summer solstice called "Noite da Queima" on June 23, on the beaches of Riazor and Orzan.

Simultaneously, hundreds of private bonfires are lit, illuminating the night of A Coruña in a magical and very special way with their waving and purifying flames.

The Bonfires of San Juan de La Coruña have been declared a Festival of National and International Tourist Interest.

Promotional video of the Festivities of the Night of San Juan 2016

How are the Bonfires of San Juan celebrated in La Coruña?

To celebrate this great popular festival, about 120 tons of firewood are distributed on the beaches, after approval of the application for permits to make bonfires, granted by the Concello or Council.

The City Council organizes a large security device made up of more than 350 police officers, supported by the use of technology to protect the attendees who enjoy this festivity.

The Ceremony of Proclamation and Imposition of Bands to the Major Meiga; Mega Mayor Infantil and Meigas of Honor by the Association of Meigas of the Bonfires of San Juan de La Coruña is carried out.

The Meigas preside over the central acts and events that take place, accompanied by music and lots of fun.

Bonfires on the beaches
Bonfires on the beaches

During the morning of June 23, the Meigas parade in procession through the main streets of the city, with great merriment, joy and lots of color. In the afternoon, musical bands and folkloric groups brighten up the atmosphere in the streets and squares. Grills are prepared with fresh sardines, a seafood delicacy that is especially enjoyed on these dates.

At night, the attendees begin to make a pilgrimage to congregate at midnight on the beach of Riazor. The Meiga Mayor and the Meiga Mayor Infantil proceed to light the bonfire, in the great "Noite Da Quema". This important fire ritual invites to celebrate until dawn, closing this magnificent festivity with many fireworks.

Origins of the celebration of the Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña

The tradition of the Bonfires of San Juan de La Coruña was celebrated several centuries ago in the Campo Da Leña, near the old church of San Juan to commemorate the patron saint of A Coruña: San Juan. Then it expanded to different areas of the city, incorporating more bonfires.

In 1970 was created the Promotion Commission of the Bonfires of San Juan, incorporating the figures of the Meigas, later moving the celebration of this festival to the beach of Riazor since 1992.

Curiosities of this festivity of the night of San Juan

Know some curious and interesting facts about the Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña:

  • The Concello organizes activities to involve attendees in waste collection, depositing glass bottles in containers and replacing plastic bags with paper.
  • The women of La Coruña make copious bouquets of wild flowers. With the dew of the Night of San Juan they let them dry hanging in the air. It serves as protection to scare away witches and other evil beings from homes.
  • Frequently the assistants submerge in the waters of the Riazor beach, as a purifying rite.

Recommendations to the visitor

  • If you want to enjoy these festivities to the fullest, here are some recommendations and practical tips:
  • Wear comfortable clothes and shoes.
  • Use the special bus service provided for these celebrations, for better mobility.
  • Keep a safe distance from the bonfires.

What else can you see or do in the town if you go to La Coruña?

It is worth visiting these historical, cultural and tourist sites in A Coruña:

  • Museum of Fine Arts: with more than 5,000 works of art (sculptures, engravings, paintings, ceramics and decorative arts).
  • Aquarium Finisterrae: also known as the "House of Fish" offers interactive experiences to visitors. Reservations are required.
  • National Museum of Science and Technology (MUNCYT): has a wonderful technological and scientific collection, exhibited in 6 large rooms.
  • Natural ecosystems: Fragas Do Eume Natural Park, Corrubedo Dune Complex Natural Park, Carregal and Vixán Lagoons, Costa Da Morte.

Gastronomy in La Coruña on Midsummer's Eve

The gastronomy of La Coruña is a true delight, with dishes based on fish, seafood and meats with protection of origin.

  • Caldeirada de Rape: it is a stew.
  • Hake Galician style: made with garlic, onion and carrot.
  • Grilled Sole.
  • Lacón with turnip tops.
  • Galician Veal.
  • Tarta de Santiago: dessert made with almonds, sugar and flour.

Share images and interesting information about the Bonfires of San Juan in La Coruña on social networks. Use the hashtags #HoguerasdeSanJuan #MeigasHoguerasSanJuan #MeigasHoguerasSanXoan

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