Sant Jordi

Sant Jordi the lovers day among books and roses

23rd of April is one of the most beautiful days in Catalunya (Catalonia): books, roses, love and a medieval legend with a dragon, a princess and a knight called Sant Jordi (Saint George). A real classic. This day could easily be nicknamed the Catalan St. Valentine’s Day. It’s the day when in the name of love we have gifts for our beloved ones. Traditionally, men give a rose their woman and women give a book to their man. The reason why women get a beautiful rose is related to Sant Jordi’s legend (watch my short video about it).

Some essential words that you must know if you spend la diada de Sant Jordi (St. George’s Day) in Catalunya are:

  • La rosa (rose)

    Sant Jordi
    Illustration by Laia Pampols
  • El drac (dragon)
  • El llibre (book)
  • La princesa (princess)
  • El cavaller (knight)
  • El dia dels enamorats (lovers day)

What I love the most about Sant Jordi:

is the fusion between love and culture, both metaphorically represented as the rose and the book.  the reason why men get books is because the most significant author of Spanish literature died / was buried on 23rd April 1616. Miguel de Cervantes wrote the Spanish masterpiece Don Quixote. Spain adopted this date to celebrate The Day of the Book, to commemorate Cervantes. Catalonia merged both traditions having roses and books as icons of this day.

Wherever you are within Cataunya, you will be surrounded by the atmosphere of this unique day. The streets will be filled with books and roses stalls whilst couples, families, romantics will be meandering the streets. If you happen to be in Barcelona, you can’t miss out on walking Passeig the Gracia all the way down to Plaça de Catalunya and then walk down Les Rambles. It’s going to be completely stuffed (I bet you have already seen the picture below), but I can guarantee that soaking up the atmosphere is totally worth it! There’s nothing like it. You have to live the experience in the name of love and books. Feliç diada de Sant Jordi!

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