The Spanish Language Blog

Today Carnival ends, but the crazy costumes are not packed away yet! There is one more celebration to mark the end of Carnival’s indulgences – El Entierro de la Sardina (Burial of the Sardines). If you are studying Spanish with us in Spain or just happen to be in one of our destinations tonight, we highly recommend you check out the festivities! Here are a few of the best celebrations and where to find them.


Tonight at 6pm the famous Giants and Big-heads parade begins from San Antonio de la Florida, where the people walk along the river Manzanares and finally bury the tiny fish in its tiny coffin near the Fuente de los Parjaritos (Fountain of the Birds) at approximately 8:30pm. Aside from the fake-somber (it’s actually very fun) funeral procession, there is also a lively parade trailing behind, complete with gigantes and cabezudos (giants and big-heads).


The funeral begins at 9pm at the Plaza Santa Teresa and ends at Plaza del Carmen, where the poor fish is burned and people dance in the plaza. If you want to see the procession, it passes by the following sites: Panteón de Quijano, Plaza España,Calderón de la Barca,Tomás López Torregrosa, Duque de Zaragoza, Plaza Ruperto Chapí, Calle del Teatro, Bazán, Gerona, Rambla Méndez Núñez, Miguel Soler, San Nicolás, Abad Nájera and finally, Plaza del Carmen.


Head to Calle Juan Pablo II in Santa Cruz at 9pm to watch the Burial of the Sardine. Join the hysteria as a loud trail of mourners, pregnant men and widows follow behind an oversized fake sardine on a thrown. It is quite a spectacle with all of the townspeople crying out for the sardine – or perhaps the end of Carnival.

Most towns in Spain have some version of this corky festival, so regardless of where you might be in Spain don’t miss out on the festivities, hilarious role-playing and public displays of hysteria! 

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