Christmas in Galicia: Nature, nativity scenes, markets, gastronomy and party

Galicia might not seem a “traditional” place to spend Christmas if you don´t live or have family here. As a matter of fact, Christmas here is like most places in Europe with bustling Christmas markets, marvelous hand-carved nativity scenes with light, water and weather effects, twinkling Christmas lights and even Christmas jumpers. Why come to Galicia then? It is no secret you can get more for your money in Galicia which offers a great quality of life to locals and visitors alike.

Galicia Christmas package, traditional food and wine in the company of welcoming local people

Relax in the thermal baths of Galicia on a freezing winter day or evening!

The typical pictures of Galicia are of pilgrims walking the Camino de Santiago, its natural parks and its incomparable beaches. Galicia transforms in winter as the trees burst into color. In the last days of the year and on these festive dates, Galicia offers travelers an alternative solution to the usual Galician tour. One of them is to indulge in thermal baths fed by natural hot springs, a magical experience with the steam rising in a cold winter´s days and evenings.

Celebrate with friends, family and locals to experience an unforgettable Galician Christmas

Christmas celebrations here usually begin with the bank holidays of the 6th and 8th December. The weeks leading up to Christmas are very busy, full of office parties and friends getting together. We also get excited over the annual Christmas lottery which is held on December 22nd and go crazy visiting our favorite bars and stores to buy one tenth of the lottery ticket with the joyful expectation to get a share of the winnings.

Christmas gastronomy in Galicia

The tradition, on December 24th is to hop from bar to bar, meeting with colleagues and friends on a wine, beer, cava and tapas celebration before preparing for the family dinner feast. The Christmas dinner is usually composed of all kind of shellfish (crabs, lobster, tiger prawns, clams, mussels, scallops, etc.) and the typical Christmas sweets, mostly made with almonds. Some people go to the Midnight Mass to celebrate the birth of Jesus, some other people go to their favorite spots to continue the celebration with friends.

Christmas party atmosphere in Galicia

Lunch on Christmas day is usually a roasted lamb or cod with all the shellfish leftovers and sweets. Parts of the presents are given on this day, most of them will be reserved for the 5th January (twelfth night), when the 3 Kings arrive. In between Christmas and New Year, the Galician keep up the party atmosphere. It is as though they are in training for New Year’s Eve.

New Year in Galicia

We usually welcome the New Year´s at home with a family dinner or organize a dinner to a restaurant. It is the tradition to eat the 12 grapes at each stroke of midnight, which will bring prosperity and good luck for the year ahead. Make sure to wear red underwear if you are looking for love and put a gold object at the bottom of your glass of cava to celebrate a new year full of luck and wealth! And then it is the magical time to go out to bars and clubs after midnight to celebrate until dawn breaks!

3 Kings parade in Galicia

And it is not finished yet as the Epiphany, or as it’s known here, “Reyes” or Kings day, is when Spain celebrates the birth of Jesus. The 5th of January shops are open late to allow people getting off work to buy their gift and then have the time to watch the biggest parade of the year, the magi cavalcade. The three kings ride through the streets escorted by a procession of elaborated coaches, filled with kids throwing sweets to everyone.

Come to spend Christmas with us!

The next morning, is the culmination of the 12 days of Christmas, and the gifts are opened. Of course, as usual, the big part of the 3 Kings tradition is focused around food and the big star of this festivity is the delicious roscon de Reyes, a brioche type cake with candied fruit and sugar on top, which makes for the perfect breakfast or dessert. People queue outside their favourite bakery to buy the freshest cake.

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If you wish to organise a Christmas tour within spectacular nature, relaxing in thermal springs, celebrating like a local and savouring local food and wines without breaking the bank, don´t hesitate to contact us at

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