ChalkCat uses cookies in order to function correctly.
To find out more about cookies as well as our monetization experiment, see our privacy notice.
To accept cookies from ChalkCat click here, or please login or register.

Author Topic: Los Reyes Magos in parades throughout Tenerife for Kings’ Eve, 5 January

Offline Janet

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 23860
  • Thanks: 30529


New Year’s Day might mark the passing of the old year, but it doesn’t mark the end of the Christmas holiday, especially not in Spain where it’s the Three Kings who deliver presents rather than Father Christmas. These are the Magi of the traditional Bible story who brought gold, frankincense and myrrh to the baby Jesus in his crib in a Bethlehem stable, a tale represented in a formal Belén (nativity scene) in most Spanish towns, e.g. La Orotava’s major one HERE, and have a look too at Jack Montgomery’s article about them HERE.

“Kings’ Day” is Epiphany, literally meaning “appearance” (of the Magi). It’s the Twelfth Night of Christmas, and so on 6 January, when many will be thinking about taking down their decorations, here it’s the climax of the entire Christmas period with children on tenterhooks, parents gearing up for the main event, and everything closed except in the main tourist areas.

Apart from their presents, many children look forward to one of the most traditional foods which will be available in all food shops, a roscón de reyes – Kings’ cake – a circular enriched dough confection decorated in the Epiphany colours of green, gold and purple, and with a gold crown on top. Often there’s a tiny gift for luck hidden inside just as there were silver threepences in the old Christmas puddings, an integral part of many a childhood Christmas!

Just as Father Christmas arrives late on Christmas Eve rather than Christmas Day so the Kings deliver their presents the night before so that they’re ready for children when they wake in the morning. On the evening of the 5th, therefore, there will be parades throughout Tenerife of Sus Majestades – usually on the traditional camels which the Bible stories tell us they rode to follow the star from the East. The parades start between 5 and 7pm or so, and as they ride in procession the Kings throw little gifts and sweets into the crowd.

Father Christmas has become increasingly popular over recent years, with many Spanish children hoping for presents from Papá Noel as well as the Kings, but the arrival of Sus Majestades Los Reyes Magos is still the most special of occasions. The main parade, or cabalgata, is at 7pm in Santa Cruz, where Sus Majestades arrive by helicopter at the Heliodoro Rodríguez López, and then parade through the streets of Tenerife’s capital. As always, there will inevitably be more people wanting to see them arrive than there are spaces in the stadium. Tickets costing €1, a nominal sum which goes to charity, are normally available a few days in advance, and usually sell out within a couple of hours, but of course there is no limit to numbers – and no cost – to see this and other parades on the streets.

In south Tenerife, one of the most popular cabalgatas is in Los Cristianos, where the Kings arrive around 7pm at the harbour from the sea – like the eastern corsairs of old. Their procession from there on camels follows the road up from the ferry, turns right up Avenida Suecia to Church Square, and then on to the Cultural Centre, where they are met by the mayor who gives them the key to the town – so that they can open all the doors they need to get through overnight to deliver presents to Arona’s children! In Adeje, the Kings arrive around 5pm by helicopter at El Galeón football ground, and then proceed along the town’s main Calle Grande. In Granadilla, the Kings start at the Church of San Antonio de Padua where they offer gifts to the baby Jesus, and then parade through the town to the Los Hinojeros sports stadium.

Apart from these large cabalgatas, most towns have some sort of Reyes events, and they all get extremely crowded, as the following videos of past parades in Los Cristianos and Adeje show. There are also always widespread traffic restrictions and security measures in place as well, so plan to get in position by at least an hour beforehand for a good viewing position!



One must have sunshine, freedom and flowers. Hans Christian Andersen

Offline Anne 2009

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 5603
  • Thanks: 8106
I really would love to see this. Maybe next year  :D

Offline Michael

  • Domestic god.
  • *
  • Posts: 13529
  • Thanks: 15039
I'm looking forward to it.

The last one I saw was brilliant so i'm going to see what I can capture with my GoPro this time.
 until I return to Tenerife! :toothygrin:


Offline Anne 2009

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 5603
  • Thanks: 8106
oh brilliant @Michael . If you do, i hope you'll share some pictures with us  :)

Offline Michael

  • Domestic god.
  • *
  • Posts: 13529
  • Thanks: 15039
That was fun. Bugs Bunny shook my hand and a nice Correos lady gave me some sweeties.  :toothygrin:
 until I return to Tenerife! :toothygrin:

Offline macdonald5

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 8782
  • Thanks: 3548
  • Holiday queen
Parade was very late at Los Cristianos, don't know if rough sea was cause
We had meal booked so after 50 minute bus trip in had to miss
Centre of Los Cristianos shut off so 'marooned' till we realised we had to walk beyond the Culture centre to get taxis
Good atmosphere and meal

Offline Nova

  • Forum Geek
  • *
  • Posts: 21259
  • Thanks: 23602
  • Say something nice!
Feliz Reyes a todos!
If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know amazing.

Offline Malteser Monkey

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 7494
  • Thanks: 8226
  • Toto's Little helper !

Offline Matt

  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 86
  • Thanks: 226
We went to Santa Cruz for our first Reyes parade, didn't really know what to expect but we had a really good time, I think you had to watch the show at the stadium to understand the evil alien overlord who's float followed the 3 kings, but it was still impressive!

We went in early to get some food and have a wander around the city/markets and found a spot near the markets on the Plaza de España. Which ended up being exactly where the parade ended and the three kings got off their floats! So we soon ended up packed in by very excited children!

Wandered back to the car afterwards through the African market which was an interesting experience to say the least!