Food & Drink
Seafood Festival, O Grove, Galicia (October 1st – 12th)
Seafood Festival in O Grove. Photo: Laura Suarez / Flickr Creative Commons.
Seafood lovers rejoice: it's time once again to chow down on all the mussels, octopus and spider crabs that your heart desires in this lovely Galician coastal town. And while you slurp down yet another oyster, you'll be entertained by traditional folk dance, rowing boat races and bagpipe music. Get ready to dig in.
Cavatast, Sant Sadurni d’Anoia, Catalonia (October 2nd – 4th)
Wash down all the seafood with a little bit of the Spanish bubbly, cava, at the annual Cavatast festival. Here you can sample various types of the sparkling wine and learn about the best ways to pair the beverage with Catalonian cheeses, fruits and oysters. There's even a workshop for children.
Fiestas del Pilar, Zaragoza (October 10th-18th)
Parade of gigantes and cabezudos (giants and big-headed people). Photo: Gaudencio Garcinuño / Flickr Creative Commons.
This may be a religious festival in honour of the city's patron saint, but this holy fiesta involves a bit more than just offering prayers and flowers to the Virgen del Pilar. There's a parade of “big-headed” and “gigantic” people (cabezudos and gigantes), a beer fest and multiple concerts, including a performance by French DJ David Guetta. The big day is October 12th with the offering of flowers where people dress up in traditional attire to honour the Virgen.
Medieval Festival, Elche, Alicante (October 22nd – November 1st)
Photo: J.A. Paredes / Flickr Creative Commons.
Each October for the last 25 years, the city of Elche does a time warp back to medieval times, complete with markets, music from the era, and games from the Middle Ages. The fest is sure to entertain both young and old.
Night Marathon, Bilbao (October 17th)
There's an added excitement to running late at night, and the Bilbao Night Marathon adds even more with music and fireworks for the annual event. More serious runners can opt for the full or half marathon version of the run, while anyone aged 16 and up can choose the seven kilometre “pirate race”.
Sitges Film Festival, Sitges, Catalonia (October 9th to 18th)
The Sitges Zombie Walk during a previous film festival. Photo: Josep Lago / AFP.
It may not correspond exactly with Halloween, but the Sitges Film Festival is certainly the best way to get you in the spooky spirit. Sitges is considered the world's top fantasy and horror film fest. This year's selection includes Knock Knock by Hostel director Eli Roth, and Wes Craven-produced The Girl in the Photographs – the last film he produced before his death in August. And it wouldn't be a horror movie fest without the Zombie Walk, where on October 10th anyone thirsty for more gore can dress up as the undead to lurch down the streets, searching for brains of course.
León Cathedral International Organ Festival, León (October 1st – November 19th)
The León Cathedral. Photo: Camuñas / Wikimedia Commons.
But if your're not a zombie and are in search of another kind of organ, the International Organ Festival might be just right. Some of the world's best organ players, orchestras and singers perform at this annual series of concerts, which take place within the beautiful León Cathedral.
Madrid Games Week, Madrid (October 1st – 4th)
Photo: Sebastien Berda / AFP.
Gamers will soon descend upon Madrid for the exposition of the latest in interactive entertainment and technology. This year's fest includes an e-sports area for tournaments, as well as a cosplay competition where participants can show off their costumes inspired by their favourite virtual characters.