Say goodbye to the summer at La Mercè, the biggest festival of the year in Barcelona.

Created to commemorate the patron saint of the city, La Mare de Déu de la Mercè (our Lady of Mercy) in 1874, la Mercè is one of most celebrated and spectacular Spanish festival. There is the Correfoc, or ‘Fire Run’, in which devils and dragons are invited into the city in a spray of sparks (usually sprayed over the crowds!).

If your preference is that other people take the risks, you can watch the Castellers build their huge, human towers.

There are also the giant papier maché Gigantes (or Giants’ Parade), where huge effigies of nobles and royalty are paraded through the streets to a cacophony of drums and cymbals.

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