I am going to spend this Christmas in Tarragona and, even though you don’t know me, I am one of those people that they say lacks all the Christmas spirit, until I see the kids overjoyed with the presents that they want to ask the Three Wise Men or Santa Clause for, and it is at this very moment when I go through a metamorphosis that leads me to love my fellows from afar and count well the coins I have in my purse so I don’t overspend my tight budget.
I would like to recover the thrill of Christmas. I would like to spend Christmas in Tarragona. I’ve been told that there is an ice-rink in Plaça Verdaguer (from the 25th of November to the 8th of January), where families go with the kids to laugh at them every time one of them falls on their bottom and then they hug each other to heal the bruises.
I would like to see the re-enactment of the first Christmas in history, to see if my own being is moved, because this will be carried out in the city under the name of Anno Domini, with performances on Saturday the 17th and Sunday the 18th of December for just 10 Euro. It will be shown in Tarragona’s archaeological walkway, which seems to be a place full of the city’s history, and I will take advantage of it to forget my own personal past and take a step back to open my mind as to how I would have survived if I had had to live in Anno Domini. Maybe my story would be more similar to “Life of Brian” by Monty Python.
I would like to pull the “Nose Man’s” nose. And you would ask; what? Who? Yes! Every year, on the 31st of December, the Nose Man comes out, a mythological Catalan character that has as many noses as the days in a year and, because it is the 31st, he only has one nose left and he can easily blend in with everyone else… and that… gets up my nose.
I would like to see how those trying to be brave jump into the sea on the last day of the year just to get a little participants’ medal for the last dip of the year, lying to their families and friends saying it wasn’t so hard and encouraging them to share their daring and the likely emergence of the feared flu.
I would like to spend Christmas in this city where Their Majesties the Magic Kings arrive by sea at one of the most important ports in the country. Where they then parade with their pageboys and helpers throughout the city, handing out sweets. I want to have a battle during the parade with all the grandparents carrying umbrellas, which they use to mark their territory and then turn them inside-out to catch an enormous amount of sweets for their grandchildren and relatives, caught up in the Christmas spirit that the little smiles in their homes have rekindled in them. And in that way I will let myself get carried away with everything the city offers me and, finally, recover the thrill. And finish by saying that Tarragona, I like it.
THE WHOLE Nadal a Tarragona 2016 (PDF) PROGRAMME
Text: Sara García León
The Tarragona City Hall, through the area of Historic Heritage, has prepared a programme of activities to celebrate the XVI anniversary of Tarraco being declared a World Heritage Site. After this declaration, made on the 30th of November 2000, came the declaration of Intangible Cultural Heritage for the human towers and for the Mediterranean diet. Moreover, Tarragona is also included in the World Heritage for its eastern coast cave paintings. Therefore, Tarragona is a truly privileged city in acknowledgments towards its extremely rich historic heritage in the broadest sense of the term.
It is therefore right that we celebrate it and that we do so with a programme that, from the 30th of November to the 4th of December, will have diffusion, participation, accessibility and reflection upon the value of heritage and its cultural, recreational and social nature as its main themes.
We begin with the presentation of the app, Tarragona Accessible, an accessible guide created by the Group of Spanish World Heritage Cities, which is an advance on the way to having heritage and tourism for everyone. On the same day, the city will award the Tarraco Prize in recognition of the tasks carried out regarding the conservation, preservation and diffusion of Tarragona’s world heritage, a new award that comes about with the intention of placing value on the efforts made by the people and entities who work for our heritage. In the participation section, we would highlight the presentation of the conclusions reached from the Civic Tarraco participative project and the start of a new participative process regarding the uses of historic heritage, which will begin with a debating session on the 2nd and in which we can participate either in person during the session or through the Internet with the Messagenes platform.
The celebration continues on the 3rd and 4th with the events of a more diffusive and recreational nature, with open day sessions throughout Tarraco’s archaeological sites, historical re-enactments beside the monuments themselves, guided visits and an open day session at the new area that can now be visited inside the Cathedral: the Exedra Romana room.
We would encourage you to have a look at the events programme and to enjoy these days of celebration, but to also have a spirit of reflection about the responsibilities and the importance of conserving and diffusing the deep cultural and social meanings entailed in our heritage. In short, a programme that is open to everyone, for both our citizens and for visitors who, we are sure, will make an even greater contribution to the appreciation of our cultural heritage, which is a true symbol of identity for the entire region. We therefore invite you to participate and to enjoy our, your heritage.
The restaurants of Tarragona present “Creative Rice Dishes from Tarragona”, a three-week gastronomic initiative that will bring the most delicious and surprising rice dishes to this Mediterranean city, elaborated exclusively with Delta de l’Ebre rice.
From the 27th of October to the 13th of November, rice will be the gastronomic star in a selection of top-class Tarragona restaurants that will offer a menu with a main-course
rice dish that will change each week.
3 weeks and 3 rice dishes to taste, paired with a bottle of Inedit, the beer created by Ferran Adrià to accompany the variety of flavours offered by modern gastronomy.
Seriously, check out these amazing and creative rice dishes made by the following restaurants: Cócvla (Hotel Urbis), Degvsta, El Terrat, Mare Nostrum (Holel SB Ciutat de Tarragona), Mas Folch, Braseria Passadís, Xamfrà del Fòrum, Els 5 sentits and Ona Restaurant (Hotel Husa Imperial Tarraco), and… you’ll get your mouth watering! Besides the restaurants taking part, Casino Tarragona and Totem Cafè will offer a specially designed cocktail elaborated from a rice licour. Don’t miss it!
More information at Gastronosfera (Catalan and Spanish).