Love is in the air in Barcelona on April 23. International Book Day turns into a romantic holiday in Catalonia. La Diada de Sant Jordi (Saint George’s Day) or El Dia de los Amantes (Day of lovers) or El Dia de la Rosa (The Day of the Rose) or El Dia del Llibre (The Day of the Book). Enjoy Sant Jordi day like real Catalan citizen.
Why the 23d of April?
It is the World Book and Copyright Day. In 1995 UNESCO declared 23rd April as World Book and Copyright Day.
The history of the San Jordi holiday is about St. George, who was a hero – he saved the beautiful princess, which was supposed to die in the clutches of the dragon that terrorized the whole village. There are several versions of this story, but this is its unchanging foundation. One of the most original celebrations in Catalonia is Sant Jordi. Yes, it is the second Love day after Valentine’s Day, Catalans love Fiestas, isn’t it good? It is a festival, which combines culture and romance. On that day, couples exchange gifts: men receive a book and women receive a rose or chocolate. Barcelona becomes during this day in a huge rose garden. And gifts are presented to anyone, it does not have to be your lover. On this day, boys give their mothers roses, and girls buy books for their friends.
Rose colours on Sant Jordi’s day
Most Sant Jordi roses are the red colour, but In recent years many colours of roses have divided to a different meaning.
- Yellow rose – friendship;
- White rose – innocence;
- Orange rose – passion and desire;
- Pink rose – happiness;
- Red with white roses signify union, a single rose means innocence and bright red rose – inner beauty.
The main place for bookshops will be La Rambla, where you can find stalls with the latest editorial news, see established authors signing copies. From 15:00 to 20:00 on Plaça Sant Jaume Square, which in itself is worth seeing, people’s dances of Sardana will be held. Sardana is a traditional Catalan folk dance. Moreover, the City Hall of Barcelona on Plaça de Sant Jaume in the gothic area of Barcelona will open its doors to visitors, free of charge! Inside the building, you can see and enjoy the incredible historical architecture, and a wonderful exhibition of roses created specifically to celebrate Sant Jordi. In the same place at 7pm will be a traditional Sardana dance by the Sant Jordi Sardana group. Many Barcelona markets, museums and institutions have special Sant Jordi activities for families and children including Casa Batlló by Gaudi, which has a facade decoration inspired by Sant Jordi. The scaly roof symbolizes the dragon and the bones of the dragon’s victims frame the Casa Batlló windows.
More activities for this day:
Sant Jordi Música 2018 is at the Antiga Fàbrica d’Estrella Damm (old Damm beer factory) who host a Sant Jordi concert programme with national artists.
In the medieval village of Montblanc is an annual festival called Setmana Medieval de la Llegenda de Sant Jordi, which celebrates the legend of Saint George.
The viewpoint of Colón, free for Jordis and Jordines. At the end of the Rambla, the statue of Columbus will have free entrance for all the people with names like Jordi, Jordina, Jorge, George, Georgina, Gina … So they will be able to go up with a companion to the viewpoint of the well-known tourist attraction of Barcelona.
The emblematic Pedrera of Antoni Gaudí will also celebrate Sant Jordi in a special and exclusive way. A total of 54 lucky couples will be able to access the main balcony of Casa Milà to receive the book or the rose. The inscriptions were free, but they are already sold out. La Sagrada Família will also celebrate in a very special way the Sant Jordi at an unusual time with a night visit with tickets already sold out. For its part, the Casa Museu Gaudí in Park Güell, will also open its doors to citizens (from 4 pm to 8 pm) and the tickets are also sold out. Others that will join the party of the book and the rose opening their doors for free to the public will be the Ateneu Barcelonès (from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.), the Museum d’Arqueologia (10:00 a.m. hours), the Museum of History of Catalonia (from 10:00 to 14:30) or el Pabellón Mies van der Rohen. So keep this information for next year!
The B-Travel show, which takes place until April 23 at the Fira de Barcelona Montjuïc exhibition center. The organizers have prepared a cultural session to celebrate the book and the rose day. On Sunday, from 11 am to 2 pm, journalists and authors of travel books and guides will present their works.
In Las Arenas from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. you will receive a rose in exchange for your smile. And the director of the Mag Fest Barcelona festival makes his surprising number at the Las Arenas shopping center at 5:00 p.m.
Solidarity books. One more year the Association Without Profit ¨1010 Ways to buy Without Money¨ will be a host on the Sant Jordi in Barcelona. Books will have a very valuable price: donate blood. A mobile donation unit of Sangre del Banc de Sang i Teixits is located right next to the stall, in the Plaza de la Catedral de Barcelona, from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Also, the donation will take place in la Casa Batlló,.
Movie lovers will also have an appointment on the day of books and roses. The Verdi cinemas host from Friday until the next day 28d of April, it is the first international film festival of Barcelona-Sant Jordi.
La Rambla del Raval will once again be the setting for the most intercultural Sant Jordi. More than eighty entities, collectives, schools and shops in the neighborhood, coordinated by the Fundació Tot Raval, are involved in this special Day with a spirit of protest. From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. there will be a fair with different tents in which books, roses, handicrafts will be sold and there will be readings of stories and children’s workshops, among other activities. The Arrels Foundation will also be present, which will sell cardboard roses at a symbolic price of two euros to raise funds for the homeless.
Check all information on the map of Barcelona Plan for Sant Jordi.
Plan your romantic trip to Barcelona and we will care about your accommodation.
Fantastic loft is located in the district of Ciutat Vella, where are shops, all kinds of public transport and the most emblematic monuments and museums of Barcelona, including the majestic Cuitadella Park, the Basilica of Santa María del Mar and the Cathedral of Barcelona.