The Magdalena Festival in Castellón
Few families who visit Castellón de la Plana know the reason for the name "plana" (flat). It comes from the relocation of the people from the mountain of La Magdalena to the coastal plains in 1251.
During the Magdalena Festival, the people of Castellón commemorate the descent from the mountain to the plain.
This year 2022, the Magdalena Festival begins on March 19 at 4:00 pm with the Cavalcade of the Pregó, a parade with a mythological and popular character.
The Pilgrimage of Las Cañas
On March 20 one of the most emotional and traditional events takes place: the pilgrimage to the hermitage of La Magdalena. The residents of Castellón get up early to pick up their cane and ribbon at the Central Market and start the march to the hermitage of La Magdalena.
A large number of locals and families attend, carrying the cane as a stick, topped with a green silk ribbon.
Illuminating the Gaiatas
Like the Fallas in Valencia and the Bonfires in Alicante, the Gaiatas are one of the most awaited spectacles of the Magdalena Festival: they are illuminated monuments (or Gaiatas) that travel throughout the city.
On March 20, after the Tornà (the return) of the Pilgrimage, the parade of the Gaiates takes place, illuminated carriages like temples, that remind of the lanterns used by the first inhabitants of Castellón when they came down from the mountains to settle in La Plana.
The festivities continue...
On monday March 21 is when the fireworks competition begins. From this day, onward all the pyrotechnics will compete to be the best of the Fiestas de la Magdalena 2022. These mascletàs take place during the day.
This day at 10:30 in the morning the Children's Proclamation (a colourful parade) will take place in the main streets of the city.
In the Avenida Rey Don Jaime at 20:00 the Encesa (lighting) of all the Gaiatas takes place, one by one, in the presence of the Queen. This year 2022, the Encesa will be done individually in each sector accompanied with a pyrotechnic finale, due to COVID19 and restrictions.
Monday at 21:00h there will be a videomapping projection on the facade of the cathedral, being projected at 21:30h, 22:00h, 22:30h and 23:00h.
Another emotive, ancient and colorful event is the Offering of Flowers to the Mare de Déu del Lledó, patron saint of the city, which takes place on the second Saturday of the Magdalena festivities. It is on March 26th.
The Festival of the Magdalena in Castellón ends on Sunday March 27 with the Final Parade of the Festival, a big fireworks display at the Plaza Mayor.
During the 9 days of festivities there will also be cultural, sports and musical events. For the full program you can check the website of the Fiestas de la Magdalena.
Where to stay in Castellón
Castellón is a city with a multitude of services and accommodations suitable for families. We recommend the Hotel del Golf Playa for your stay, a four-star hotel for families, next to the beach.