For 2020, the agenda of Tenerife has filled again with festivals, celebrations, and religious processions. But have you ever heard of the Three Kings Day or Dia de Los Reyes in Spanish – the most beloved holiday for young and old in Spain and other Spanish-speaking cultures?
When most people have already ended the Christmas season and got back to their daily lives, Spain and other Spanish-speaking countries are still waiting for their gifts. They receive their gifts on January 6, 12 days after Christmas.
In the days leading up to January 5, children write letters to the Three Kings asking them for gifts. The day before Three Kings Day is a day for parades and processions throughout Spain. On the eve of January 5, children leave their shoes by the door with hopes that the three kings will leave gifts inside during their overnight visit, very much like like Santa Claus.
Events and Parades
Just like every year, the Three Wise Men or “Los Reyes Magos” as called in Spanish are coming back to Tenerife. They go by the names Melchior, Gaspar and Balthasar. There will be several parades taking place in the capitals. The main one will start in the municipality of Santa Cruz. At 5 pm the Three Kings will arrive, followed by a fun show for the children. All of this takes place at the ‘’Heliodoro Rodriguez Lopez Stadium’’. After the shows, there will be a procession through the streets of Santa Cruz.
The Three Kings will visit Los Cristianos in the south of Tenerife on their way as well (16:30-17:15). At around 17:15 until 19:30, the children will bring the Three Kings their letters where they usually write their wishes for presents and dreams for the next year. This will take place outside of the ‘’Centro Cultural Los Cristianos’’ and will be followed by a parade through Los Cristianos.
In the town of Garachico which is located in the north of Tenerife, there will be nice activities for the children all day long, followed by a parade as well. You can also go look at the parade in La Caleta de Interian.
Although we only mentioned the bigger places above, there will be processions all over the island and each town will celebrate it in their own way. It’s a really nice event to attend when you’re in Tenerife so don’t miss out!
Where is the unwrapping gifts day coming from?
On Christmas Day, children may receive a small gift or two, but the big day for presents is on January 6 or Epiphany. Just as the magi delivered gifts to baby Jesus after his birth, the Three Kings do the same for the children of Spain 12 days after Christmas.