Christmas is coming… and in Gijón, like in the rest of the country, it lasts all the way through to the visit of the Magi (the Three Wise Men, or Three Kings as they are known in Spain) on the eve of 6th January… and a day or two more if the dates are right (like this year!). So there’s plenty of time for the whole family to have fun and enjoy the city in loads of ways.
The Christmas lights are already shining in the town’s main streets. You can even take a City Tour Bus on 9th, 10th, 16th and 17th December for just €3 to see them all. There are 2 tours each day, leaving at 6:30pm and 7:30pm. Bookings at the Infogijon tourist office in the marina.
Between 2nd December and 8th January, the younger members of the family have the chance to take a ride on the vintage merry-go-round dating from 1910 that can be found on Paseo de Begoña promenade. Tickets cost just €2 a ride (€5 for 3 tickets).
The more daring can head for the park where the railway station used to be to skate on the ice rink installed there (one of the largest in Spain) or grab a sled to glide down the artificial snow slide right next to it. Both are open from 2nd December to 8th January. A spin on the ice will cost you just €5/hour (including the use of skates). Gloves are a must, so bring your own or hire them for an extra euro. The individual sled costs €4 for 3 rides, while a double sled costs €6 for 3 rides. There are also combined offers which work out a little easier on the pocket.
After all the thrills, you might like to take in the two Nativity scenes that are open to the public between 5th December and 8th January. One featuring the shepherds can be found in the Antiguo Instituto Cultural Centre in Calle Jovellanos, 1, while the Pueblu d’Asturies Museum (opposite the football stadium) houses two, one known as the “Bread House” and the other, a maritime nativity scene. More info [pb1] at: www.asociacionblenistadegijon.com. Not to forget the monumental municipal nativity scene on display at the Atlantic Botanic Gardens, which offers a full programme of activities including open days between 17th December and 8th January from 10am to 6pm. Activities include workshops, films for the kids, guided visits, storytelling and family treasure hunts. More info at: www.botanico.gijon.es
Talking of Magi, the city will also be home to a number of internationally-renowned magicians over the hols as part of Gijón’s 6th Magic Week. The performances will take place on Paseo de Begoña promenade and by the ice rink. More info at: festejos.gijon.es and www.elilusionisata.es
Lovers of Christmas Carols are also in luck, as the Anselmo Solar Gijón Choir will be singing classics such as Jingle Bells, Fum Fum Fum, El Tamborilero, as well as other seasonal songs like White Christmas, at 8:30pm on Christmas Day in the Church of San José. Admission is free until all seats are taken, so get there early!
The Jovellanos Theatre will be offering a varied programme of shows and concerts over the holidays, too, including a Gospel festival, Dance, Musicals, New Year Concert… and more. Check out the full programme at the theatre or on its website: www.teatrojovellanos.com
And if all that weren’t enough… the city’s museums and the aquarium have organized heaps of special activities, the city is host to loads of sporting events and then there are the Christmas street markets… but more of that in a later post!
Shiny Happy Christmas to one and all, hoping you have a great time in Gijón and a Fantastic New Year!