Calendar of festivals and cultural and sporting activities

Tarragona is a city awash in light and colour. The mild climate and Mediterranean character, the charm of the streets and the warmth of the people make it an ideal spot for outdoor leisure and cultural pursuits. Tarragona is also synonymous with festivities, and here the festivities take to the streets. Thanks to the many traditional local and Catalan regional holidays, the agenda is packed with celebrations all year long.

Download as a pdf

Download as a PDF

© Laia Díaz
5 January

The Three Wise Men arrive to the city by boat, after a long journey to fulfil the dreams of young and old people

The kids wait impatiently for the Tree Wise Men who arrive at the Serrallo to tour the city accompanied by the pages and floats.

© SCAN Tarragona
13 October 2023-18 February 2024

SCAN, the Tarragona photography contest

SCAN offers the public an interesting and complete programme of exhibitions, screenings, conferences and workshops.

© Francesc Torres
2-13 February

Celebrate the great festival of the king of debauchery in Tarragona Carnival

During one week the streets are filled with colour and music to celebrate the great festival of the king of debauchery. The highlight of the festival is the float-filled parade on the Saturday, and of particular note are the concerts, the tasting of botifarra d’ou (egg sausage) and the crema de la bota (the burning of the Carnival King figure in an enormous barrel) at the festivities' end. 

Program of the Carnival: download as a pdf

© Manel R. Granell
17 March

The traditional tres tombs parade returns to Tarragona

Els tres tombs, held in many towns throughout Catalonia, gathers a wide number of riders, carts and horses who go round the streets of the city-centre and receive the blessing of Sant Antoni (Saint Anthony), patron saint of domestic animals.

© HaBaWaBa Spain
23-26 March

Experience the Spanish edition of the world's most famous water polo festival for kids

A three-day tournament plus a day dedicated to fun and excitement at PortAventura Park. The world’s leading grassroots water polo festival will take place at the Sylvia Fontana Olympic outdoor pool in Tarragona.

© Pep Escoda
24 March-1 April

Easter Week: the Passion comes to Tarragona

Tradition and spirituality coexist in the city during Easter Week, celebrations that most Tarragona residents experience intensely, regardless of their religious beliefs.

© Mag Gerard
April

Revel in the world of magic

The world of illusionism comes together on the stages of Tarragona to offer a selection of the best magic shows today.

© Manel R. Granell
23 April

Celebrate the Sant Jordi (St. George) Feast in Tarragona

On this day the Saint George Feast, patron saint of the Catalans, is commemorated. It is customary for couples to exchange roses and books. There is also a human towers exhibition by the city's four colles (groups): Xiquets de Tarragona, Colla Jove Xiquets de Tarragona, Xiquets del Serrallo and Colla Castellera Sant Pere i Sant Pau.

© Marc Colilla
25-28 April

The best jazz music in Tarragona

The only festival in Spain dedicated to dixieland, the origin of Jazz, popular music from New Orleans from the end of the 19th century. Every year it holds more than thirty concerts and activities in different areas as theatres, bars, restaurants and also in the open air.

© Rafael López-Monné
3-19 May

Treat yourself to delicious rice à la marinière

Some of the best restaurants in Tarragona offer you menus with rice à la marinière as the protagonist.

Tàrraco Viva, el festival romà de Tarragona - el festival romano de Tarragona
13-26 May

Come to Tarragona’s Roman festival and discover your history!

Tarragona travels in time up until a period of great splendour for the city: the Roman times. During these international symposiums to raise awareness of ancient Roman history, the visitor lives the Roman Tarraco through historic performances such as gladiator fights, Roman theatre, music and dance and historical re-enactments of life in Roman times.All of this within an incomparable setting: the monumental sites declared World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.

18 May

An opportunity to get to know Tarragona's museums and cultural institutions

On the night of 18 May, the participating institutions stay open late and offer a different way to see their exhibitions, as well as the chance to enjoy activities and guided tours.

© Manel R. Granell
2 June

The coca de cireres (flatbread with cherries) and the ou com balla (dancing egg) are the most rooted traditions in the celebration of this religious festivity where one can also enjoy some traditional elements of the parade such as the towering giants and the Magí de les Timbales (a drummer on horse who announces the festival).

© Manel R. Granell
23 and 24 June

Fire, music, and human castles are the backbone of the St. John Festival in Tarragona

The main events of the St. John Festival take place in El Serrallo, Tarragona's seafarers´ neighbourhood, with the arrival of the flame from the Canigó, and on the Rambla Nova, with the Fire Parade, led by the local fire groups (Ball de Diables, Drac, Bou, Griu, Víbria and Colla de Diables Voramar del Serrallo), accompanied by some invited groups, which ends with the lighting of the bonfire. Kermesses (street parties) take place in different squares around the city, ending at dawn.

Tarragona, Ciutat de Castells - Ciudad de / Ville de / City of Castells
24 June-6 October

Tarragona, City of Human Towers, offers human tower exhibitions and events

A magnificent chance to live out this tradition with over 200 years of history that is still very much present in our area’s traditional festivals.

© Manel R. Granell
3-6 July

A competition of light and colour

The International “Ciutat de Tarragona" Fireworks Contest has a long tradition (1990) and has become one of the most emblematic in the Mediterranean.

© Pep Escoda
12-19 August

Sant Magí Tarragona is one of the Tarragona’s major festivals

Sant Magí is celebrated with fascinating elements of local popular culture, such as Magí de les Timbales, the giants, the Gegantons Negritos, dwarves, bastoners (dancers hitting sticks together in rhythm) and more. All these festive figures come together to accompany the water of Sant Magí, the central focus of the festival. The castells (human towers) also play a role in the celebration, along with a wide variety of festive and cultural events (concerts, theatre, etc.).

© Albert Rué
30 August-1 September

An open door to new talents performed in different languages

The Tarragona international theatre festival aims to bring together all the new plays of contemporary authors and directors of different origins, whether from home or abroad. The main distinctive trait is that these new dramas will be performed in places that are not theatres, but rather other of the city’s emblematic or historical sites.

© Manel R. Granell
11 September

The National Day of Catalonia

The Catalan National Day or Diada de l'Onze de Setembre is the bank holidays of Catalonia and is commemorated annually.

Tarragona lives the Catalan National Day with the Catalan traditions par excellence: Sardana dances and human towers.

13-24 September

There is no other time of the year as lively as during the great festival, Santa Tecla.

For over one week, the people from Tarragona and the visitors go out on the streets to take over the most emblematic areas of the city where the different traditional, festive and gastronomic events take place.

Peonada Popular Santa Tecla
15 September

The sports event of Santa Tecla

The most festive and traditional sporting event in Tarragona.

Concurs de Castells / Concurso de Castells, Tarragona
5 and 6 October

The world's largest human tower show

The Castells Competition is an event with the best colles (human tower groups) in the country, held every two years in Tarraco Arena Plaça (ancient bullfighting ring).
The most important human towers groups from around Catalonia, together with the local ones, gather to participate in the most contested and attended human castle day of the entire season.

© Alba Rodriguez
7-13 October

Breathe the art of flamenco to its maximum expression

This October the city is organizing a series of events with an emphasis on Flamenco. Internationally-recognized flamenco stars and local artistes will be headlining a programme that includes flamenco shows, concerts, workshops and exhibitions.

© Vilaniu
11-13 October

The area around the cathedral turns into a medieval market where to purchase handcraft products.

Moreover, one can enjoy street performances set in medieval times (minstrels, jugglers...).

Romesco de Tarragona
11-27 October

Romescvs + Macabevs. 100% DO Tarragona

Special menus in the city's restaurants. Treat yourself to Tarragona's most celebrated dish.

© Adrià Borràs
8-10 November

Enjoy The Embutada: come and taste the new wines while enjoying regional gourmet products and cultural attractions!

The Embutada festival aims to uphold the memory and winemaking traditions of the funnel system, which was not only used in Tarragona and the towns of the county of Tarragonès, but also in such iconic winemaking regions as Priorat and Baix Penedès.

© El perfil Bueno / PMET
10 November

“City of Tarragona” Half Marathon +10K, two competitive races that bring together runners from all over the world in a great celebration of long-distance running

As has been the tradition for over 25 years now, the “City of Tarragona” Half Marathon +10K will be held in November. Some 2.500 participants fill the city’s streets, free from circulating traffic, in order to reach their personal goal. 

© Laia Marín
31 December

Enjoy this Catalan tradition in Tarragona

During the last day in the year, a funny character called Home dels Nassos, who has as many noses as days left in the year (a large nose), represented by a nano (big head), walks around the city’s streets giving out sweets to children.

© Alejandro Navarro
End of November-beginning of January

The magic of Christmas in Tarragona     

From the end of November Tarragona is decked with festive Christmas lights and hosts its annual Christmas fair. Two very rooted traditions are re-enacted: el Tió (log that gives presents) and the nativity scenes exhibited in premises of different associations and in the city’s parks. The festivities are completed with different Christmas activities: Performance of the theatre show Els Pastorets (The Little Sheperds), Christmas carol singing, and the children’s park, among others.

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