San Juan, the most magical night


Ever heard of how the even of San Juan is celebrated in Spain? It's one of the most exciting and magical nights of the year! If you haven't heard about it, read on and discover everything there is to know about the most magical night of summer with Renfe. We promise you won't be disappointed!

What happens on the eve of San Juan?

The eve of San Juan is a festivity celebrated worldwide, albeit particularly in Spain. It is celebrated on the evening of 23 June, to coincide with the summer solstice. That makes it the shortest night of the year! And that also means it's the perfect time to celebrate the start of summer, with plenty of partying and fun!

But what makes San Juan Eve so famous? The story dates back centuries, when pagans celebrated the summer solstice in the form of rituals and ceremonies. The arrival of Christianity in Spain didn't eliminate these festivities, rather it transformed them to honour St John the Baptist, who was responsible for baptising Jesus in the River Jordan.

San Juan Eve in the different regions of Spain

Despite being celebrated throughout the country, each region has its own traditions and ways of celebrating this special occasion.

  • In Galicia, San Juan Eve is celebrated with ancestral rituals including the burning of dolls and taking a leap of faith over bonfires. It is also traditional to eat roasted sardines and drink wine on this magical night.
  • In Catalonia, San Juan Eve is known locally as the "Nit de Sant Joan" and is celebrated with beach parties, bonfires and fireworks. It is also customary to jump over bonfires to purify the body and the mind.
  • In Asturias, San Juan Eve is celebrated in the form of the "Fiesta de la Xana", a festival that sees bonfires lit and apples burned, in addition to processions and traditional dances.
  • In Andalusia, San Juan Eve is celebrated with religious processions, bonfires and fireworks. It is also typical to take a dip in the sea at midnight to purify the body.
  • In turn, in Valencia, San Juan Eve is celebrated with bonfires on the beach, where the famous San Juan "Fallas" are burned. The region also sees concerts, parties and activities organised by town halls on the beach.


What is so unmissable about experiencing San Juan Eve for yourself?

On the eve of San Juan, you can witness unforgettable moments, such as jumping over bonfires, enjoying beaches illuminated by torchlight and bonfires or sampling the delicious typical food of each region. What's more, this night is full of magic and legends, when it is believed that wishes come true and forces of nature are at their peak.

However, San Juan Eve is much more than just a simple party. It offers the opportunity to connect with your roots and with nature, leaving the old behind us and welcoming in the new. It is a night for purification and renewal, when fears and worries can be left behind and when we can start again with energy and hope.

Experiencing San Juan Eve for yourself also provides you with an insight into the different traditions and customs of each region of Spain, enriching you culturally and helping you to better understand Spanish identity.

How can Renfe help you?

How do you mean, how can Renfe help? Well, by providing you with the best way to travel between regions! Travelling safely, responsibly, quickly and comfortably is possible, all thanks to Renfe. Discover all our routes and find your ticket at the best price to enjoy San Juan Eve this year. What are you waiting for?