San Juan Night in Marbella
The festival of San Juan is held on the eve of June 23 and lasts until the first hours of June 24th commemorating the shortest night and longest day of the year. It traditionally marks the beginning of the summer solstice and has its roots in pagan rituals. The elements of fire, water and light are all embedded in the tradition. Massive bonfires are built on the beaches in Marbella and the Costa del Sol, which represent purification of the spirit. There is also a tradition, which states that if you jump over the bonfire three times on San Juan Night, you will be cleansed and purified burning all your problems away.
Water is also brought into the equation to recuperate and rejuvenate. According to tradition, people jump into the water at midnight in order to wash away evil spirits. You may see others washing their faces and feet three times so they may be granted three wishes and have a successful and happy year ahead.
It is a memorable, almost surreal scene and one that needs to be experienced.
Happy San Juan!