Semana Santa Chica | Posted: 13 January 2014
At Easter, experience Aracena's colourful Semana Santa Chica on a self guided walking holiday in Andalucia
At Easter, experience Aracena's colourful Semana Santa Chica on a self guided walking holiday in Spain
At Easter, experience Aracena's colourful Semana Santa Chica on a self guided walking holiday in Spain

Semana Santa is one of the biggest, most flamboyant festivals on the Spanish calendar, but you don't need to brave the crowds in Seville to enjoy the pageantry and processions.

Every Easter hundreds of thousands of visitors flock to Seville to join the faithful in the noisy, crowded streets, hoping to catch a glimpse of the huge, ornate floats bearing life-size wooden icons as they are drawn along by hooded men in colourful processions throughout the week.

For something more joyful, utterly charming and far less hectic, you’d be better off waiting a few days and heading to the quiet villages of the Aracena Sierra, tucked away near the border with Portugal north of Seville.

Here, it’s the children of the Sierra who celebrate the Semana Santa Chica (‘Little Holy Week’) in which they replicate the huge Easter floats (pasos) of their noisy neighbour Seville, holding their own procession through the streets of Aracena.

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Treasures of Aracena

Discover this fascinating region – its history, heritage, traditions, culture and cuisine – from the delightful Posada de San Marcos in the traditional village of Alájar.

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The children spend months beforehand creating their own ornate costumes, colourful floats and the figures of Christ and the Virgin Mary which they will carry through the streets during the festival. Nothing is forgotten, and you’ll see standard-bearers and flag wavers, drum bands and even Roman soldiers, perfectly dressed for the occasion. Whatever the adults do in Seville, the children do equally as well here in this corner of authentic Spain, where people are happy to pass the time of day, doff their hats and give you a friendly wave.

Nowhere epitomises this 'real' Spain more than the delightful Posada de San Marcos in the pretty village of Alájar, where the welcome is warm and the meals truly delicious. From here, an easy walk takes you to this most genuine of Easter festivals in Aracena, where the only crowds you’ll meet are proud mums and dads, family friends and next-door neighbours.



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