Biscay dresses up in february
From 16 to 21 february carnival fills the streets with children and adults wearing make-up and costumes. In addition to the parades, there are popular celebrations and musical concerts.
In Bilbao it all begins with the multitudinous trial of Farolín and Zarambolas, who are usually chosen from among illustrious Bilbainos and Bilbainas known for their love of the city.
The judgement is pronounced after they are brought out of the Town Hall in a cage and lead a colourful parade. After the celebratory weekend, animated by masquerades, the setting of entertainment venues, parades and fun, there is the burning of the Sardine and the end of the Carnival.
Markina preserves the old ‘Hartzaren Desfilea’ (Parade of the Bear): a character dressed as a brown bear walks through the streets chained to its owner. The traditional ‘Zagi Dantza’ (Odre Dance), a dance performed with sticks (paloteo) during Carnival, is also preserved in Markina.
In Mundaka, the men dress up as ‘atorrak’ with pillowcases on their heads, painted moustaches and beards and wide white blouses, to go out into the streets to play bandurrias and accordions and sing coplas about the events of the current year. The women, ‘lamiak’, paint their faces black and white, wear colourful scarves and cover themselves with dark robes to parade, sing and dance.
New Basque Cuisine facing the Sea in Getxo.
Family restaurant with a bar serving tapas, casseroles and delicius rabas (fried squid)
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Music and a good atmosphere always accompany these events.
Bilbao is transformed into a great festival every 21st December.