As in the rest of Spain, the Noche Buena celebrations take place on Christmas Eve in Palma de Mallorca with families gathering for a traditional meal. With full bellies, the entire island descends upon Palma’s stunning cathedral to take part in the Christmas mass during which the singing of the hymn, The Song of the Sybilla, plays an important part. With the ceremony over, families head to the bars and cafés to socialise and wish each other the greetings of the season. This is the perfect opportunity to sample some traditional food, including delicious warm buñuelos (doughnuts), coca de Nadal (pastry with vegetables) and thick hot chocolate.
Noche Buena, or the ‘Good Night’, takes place on 24th December each year and is an important part of the festive season celebrations. The focal point is the breathtaking cathedral in Placa de L’Almoaina, where crowds gather for the Misa del Gallo (the midnight mass). For those not in Palma, the mass will take place at the local church. If you’re planning to attend Noche Buena in Palma de Mallorca, fly into the city’s Son Sant Joan International Airport.
The centrepiece of the island’s Christmas Eve celebrations is the magnificent La Seu cathedral which is a fine example of Catalan Gothic architecture but with some Northern European characteristics. Originally the site of a mosque from Moorish times, it occupies a unique position overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Legend has it that, as King James was on his way to wrest control of Mallorca from the Arabs, he encountered an awful storm. He prayed to the Virgin and promised that if he survived the storm, he would honour her with a magnficent cathedral, which he duly did. As well as during Noche Buena, you can visit the cathedral from Tuesday to Friday between 10am and 6pm or until 2pm on Saturdays.
Make the most of your visit to Palma by staying in the perfect rental accommodation for you. At Eventful Stays, you can choose to stay in apartments, townhouses, studios, bed and breakfasts or boats…all within easy reach of the cathedral on foot. Check out our accommodation in Palma de Mallorca.
While you’re in Palma, make sure you find time to see some of the amazing sights on the island, including: the Musei parroquial de Sant Jaume and the Basilica de Sant Francesc. Check out the natural beauty of the Serra de Tramuntana too.
To find out more information about this traditional festival, please look at the city’s official website, where you’ll be able to check out the official programme of events and find out more about the history of the cathedral and the island.
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