Whether it's a trip to see the tongue-in-cheek send-up of politicians at Las Fallas before a spectacular flaming finale in Valencia or slogging your way around the Barcelona marathon, there is plenty going on across Spain during March.
At the annual "festa més dolça," 60 tons of sweets are given away during a colourful parade in the historic Grácia district. Horse-drawn carriages and floats ride together down the streets, filling the fresh air with music, colour, and candy. Later in the evening, the procession comes to an end in the little Grácia gardens with a firework display.
The streets leading to the Castle of Javier fill with pilgrims during the first two weekends of March as thousands flock to honor San Francisco Javier.The spiritually-charged pilgrimage, stretching more than 50 kilometers, originated in the 19th century when the town evaded a cholera epidemic thanks to the saint's intervention.
Each March in Valencia, a vibrant celebration occurs in the name of Saint Joseph, the patron saint of carpenters. In preparation for this internationally recognized festival, Valencianos spend months hand-crafting giant papier-mâché models satirizing current politicians and popular figures. The "ninots" are then paraded through the streets, before being set ablaze in a vivacious whirlwind of bonfires and spectacular fireworks. You haven't really been to a bonfire party until you've experienced Las Fallas.
Every Sunday during Lent, 500-plus residents of Cervera don costumes and take part in a giant reconstruction of the Passion of Christ, a theatrical performance that goes on for almost six hours. This religious tradition originated in 1481 and has continued since. Fun fact: the local participants are not theatrically-trained; the only stage experience they've had is through this annual production.
International Vintage Car Rally Barcelona -Sitges, (Catalonia) March 4th and 5th
This classic car rally held since 1959 is only open to vehicles dating from pre-1924 and takes place between Barcelona and Sitges with participants dressing up in the costumes of the day. The event attracts genuine museum pieces with a prize given to those with the most original vehicles and whose drivers best manage to evoke the bygone era in which they were made.
Fitness fanatics can take in a bit of sightseeing along the way as the acclaimed route passes through the Olympic village, the foot of Montjuic, Gaudi´s Sagrada Familia and Barça FC´s Camp Nou. If you are participating, then don´t forget to 'carb up' the day before with a pasta party arranged by the race organizers.
Champions League: FC Barcelona vs PSG, Camp Nou (Barcelona) March 8th
Title favourites face to face, champions of Spain and France and the stars of one of the most interesting play-offs of the competition's last-16 stage.
Competitors from around the world are heading to northeastern Spain in March for fresh snow and the Snowboarding World Cup. It's an exciting spectator sport, and the aprés ski isn´t too bad either.
Malaga Film Festival, March 17th - 26th
For nine days during March, the city of Malaga is transformed into the Costa del Sol's answer to Cannes in a celebration of Spanish film. Feature films, shorts and documentaries are all showcased here.
Tango festival, Granada, March 14th -19th