Come to Barcelona for Sant Jordi

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In the streets of Barcelona, every April 23rd, the magic of Sant Jordi is experienced, an emblematic tradition that combines literature, culture and romanticism. Originally from Catalonia, this tradition pays tribute to the patron saint of the autonomous community, Saint George, and commemorates the death of two great literary references: William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes. In this post, we will explain the tradition of Sant Jordi in Barcelona, discovering its origins, customs and the experiences that make this day a unique celebration in the world.

From a legend to a tradition

Legend has it that a ferocious dragon terrorized the small town of Montblanc. It began to devour the animals, until there were no more left. Then, to keep the town safe, it was decided that a local resident would be offered every day to be eaten. After a few days, it was the princess’ turn, but when she was about to be devoured by the beast, the knight Sant Jordi appeared and killed the dragon by thrusting his lance into its chest. From the spilled blood of the animal was born a rose bush full of red roses. The knight took one and gave it to the princess.

When is Sant Jordi?

The tradition of giving a red rose as a gift dates back to the Middle Ages, however, the element of the book was not added until later. Coinciding with the date of the death of Shakespeare and Cervantes in 1930, it was decided to establish April 23rd as Book Day in Spain, thanks to the proposal of the writer Vicent Clavel. Years later, UNESCO would establish this same date as World Book and Copyright Day.

How Sant Jordi is lived

During Sant Jordi, the streets are transformed into a unique atmosphere where literature and romanticism come to life. From the early hours of the morning, bookstores and flower shops open their doors to welcome crowds of people looking for the perfect gift for their loved ones. Barcelona’s emblematic streets, such as Las Ramblas and Paseo de Gracia are filled with colorful stalls displaying a wide variety of roses and books ranging from classics to the latest publishing novelties. In addition to the exchange of roses and books, Sant Jordi offers a cultural program with many activities including book signings, public readings and workshops for the whole family, as well as special radio and television programs.

If this is the first time you visit Barcelona on these dates, concentrate on Las Ramblas, Plaza Real, Plaza Cataluña, Portal del Ángel and Paseo de Gracia. Although if you have a clear objective (the signing of a writer or a concert, for example), the best thing to do is to check the planned agenda to organize your route.

It is also highly recommended to visit museums and some of the most emblematic spaces of the city that open their doors on this date, such as the Barcelona City Hall. You can also go to see buildings such as Casa Batlló, which decorates its facade in a spectacular way.

Although roses and books are the undisputed protagonists of the day of Sant Jordi, the celebration also offers something very special for lovers of local cuisine, and is that bakeries and pastry shops sell the famous Sant Jordi bread and coca de Sant Jordi.

In short, Sant Jordi 2024 in Barcelona is an experience not to be missed. At MH Apartments, we offer you the comfort and convenience you need to make the most of your stay in Barcelona. Don’t wait any longer, book now and get ready to immerse yourself in the magic of Sant Jordi this 2024!

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