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Festivals in Andalucia Note that due to the Coronavirus restrictions in Spain and Andalucia all the traditional festivals and parades have been cancelled at least until April 2021. This includes the emblamatic Seville Spring Fair. Some smaller events are still taking place if the organisors are able to ensure social distancing. Keep up to date with the latest info about Coronavirus in Andalucia, Spain.

Fascinating Facts - Fact 4

Almost every Spanish home has a navitity scene in pride of place at Christmas © iStock
Almost every Spanish home has a navitity scene in pride of place at Christmas.

5 Fascinating Facts about Christmas

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BELEN (NOT ESTEBAN): The holy family, the animals, the shepherds - and the man having a poop

Many schools, offices, shops and home have a belen (nativity scene, literally Bethlehem; sometimes they do indeed have the entire town), still an important aspect of Christmas festivities in Andalucia. They feature animals (from the traditional oxen, donkeys and camels, to cows, sheep, goats, pigs, chickens, ducks, geese and dogs); Reyes Magos (Magi); angels; shepherds, farmers, artisans; houses in various different styles: rivers, bridges, ponds and wells; palm trees and other vegetation; and, at the centre, the stable, manger (pesebre), Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus; and not forgetting, of course, caganer (a man squatting to relieve himself). The more contemporary belenes may also include current newsworthy figures (Belen Esteban?). Even better, take the kids to see a live nativity scene, called a belen viviente, complete with animals; the town of Beas in Huelva has an excellent one.