24 September is the day of Barcelona’s Festa Major, or big annual festival, commemorating the feast day of La Mercè (Our Lady of Mercy), the patron saint of Barcelona.
Barcelona’s streets and neighbourhoods come alive during the festival which, given its huge significance to locals, isn’t only celebrated on the 24th, but rather comprises four days jam-packed with activities.
Some of the most popular activities include the Correfoc (a "fire run" in which people are pursued through the streets by firework-spraying demons, dragons and all manner of other mythological creatures), the Catalan Wine and Cava Fair (in which a number of Catalan wine producers show off their products and offer free tasting sessions) and the Piromusical (a music, fireworks and light show held in Montjuïc) which provides a fittingly spectacular finale to the celebrations.
In short, with artistic and fun activities galore, you’re bound to have a blast at this festival, which offers everything from dance to circus, concerts, shows and street art for all tastes and ages. When it comes to parties, it’s hard to top Barcelona’s La Mercè, which also marks the end of summer and looks forward to autumn.