Easter in Barcelona (2012)
I’m a little late getting to this blog post, but ever since we landing back in the states, we’ve been busy non-stop. I wanted to write this post to give a bit of an idea of what our Easter was like in Barcelona.
We have developed a tradition of our family (Troy, TJ and I) visiting Troy’s sister and her family for Easter. This year, they were in Barcelona, so we joined them there the week before Easter and visited the Canary Islands with them for a week and then spent another four days in Barcelona.
In Spain, the week before Easter is Holy Week or “Semana Santa.” The schedules throughout that week are a little erratic because some businesses close for the different holy days surrounding Easter and the kids are out of school for Spring Break. There are a few traditions though that take place and we tried to incorporate both Spanish and American traditions into our festivities this year.
The first night we were in Barcelona we made our way down to Plaza Catalunya for an Easter Procession. The procession paraded through the Gothic part of the city and the drums and instruments resonated through the streets, it was truly a unique experience. There were floats depicting Jesus Christ and The Virgin Mary. These floats were carried on the backs of many people that were somewhat hidden beneath them as they carried them. There were candles and people dressed in long cloaks with pointed hoods hiding their faces. They were symbolizing the sinners. Some were even barefoot to show their sacrifices for the Lord Jesus Christ. It was truly a unique and cultural experience to see.
Another Spanish tradition are the chocolate “monas.” These are amazing chocolate sculptures sold by the bakeries of the city. They are open before Easter and on the day of Easter so that families can partake in this unique tradition and take home these amazing chocolate sculptures. Some sculptures were small treats and just a few euros while others were extravagant designs and were 75 euros or more. We walked all around the city checking out the different chocolate designs at the different bakeries.
Of course we had to have a traditional American Easter egg hunt too. For this, we visited the Labyrinth and the Jardin Horta-Gunardo gardens surrounding it and let the kids hunt for their Easter eggs. We were the only ones hunting eggs, but it was fun and they got a lot of candy and some surprises. We were surprised by the number of people at the Labyrinth on Easter. We expected it to be a quite place, but it was actually very busy. Afterwards we had coffee and let the kids play on the playground before taking the subway back home for some relaxation.