New Year in Spain

New Year in Spain is all about celebrating with family and friends and therefore it is often seen that people are home for New Year. Even parties in the clubs and restaurants begin after 12 at night as people only arrive after they have welcomed New Year around midnight at home.
The Spanish name for New Year Eve is Noche Vieja. Large feasts and merry making by all the members of the family mark its celebrations. On 31st December people will generally assemble in the public places to light up fireworks and crackers. Many street parties and parades can be seen on the New Year eve too. These engage people from various age groups to participate in them to enjoy.
The celebrations of New Year in Spain reach the zenith when at midnight the tradition of eating 12 grapes are observed. The 12 grapes resemble the 12 months of the year and it is considered to be auspicious to eat them on New Year. Traditionally it was started after the Spanish king decided to give grapes to his subjects to eat after a rich harvest. It has stayed on since then and people even today observe the same.
A night of events and entertainment await after that. People are out in the restaurants and clubs and the parties go on till the wee hours of the morning.
Certain traditions that are unique to the place make the celebrations of the particular festival even more interesting. Spain is no exception. On New Year in Spain people wear red underwear that is to be bought by somebody else! Also the eating of the grapes makes it unique and interesting for the onlooker. Ringing of the bells also is a fascinating feature of New Year celebrations in Spain. People wait until the bells go in the town square especially in cities like Madrid and then go out to celebrate with friends.
All in all New Year in Spain is more of a family matter than anything and the entire celebrations revolve around traditions and customs peculiar to most areas across Spain.

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