The Eye

Barcelona, January 2021

Photo: Juanma Ramos

Return of the Kings

A highlight of Christmastime in Catalonia is the procession of the Three Kings held on the evening of January 5 in towns and cities all over the country. The extravagant parade with its carnival-like atmosphere marks the arrival of the Kings and naturally attracts crowds of people, in particular families. However, the tradition of welcoming the Kings on the evening they distribute gifts to households everywhere flies in the face of health regulations aimed to prevent the spread of coronavirus. In fact last year, the parades had to be cancelled and in Barcelona, for example, it was replaced by a static event in the city’s Fòrum venue (pictured). The good news is that this year, despite a recent rise in coronavirus infections, the Kings’ parades are set to go ahead in most places, albeit with some restrictions. All participants will have to wear face masks and maintain a safe distance, while police will strictly control the access of the public to the areas through which the parades will pass. As long as the health situation does not become so serious that the Catalan authorities feel forced to recommend the cancellation of the parades, the Three Kings will make a welcome return to Catalonia.

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