Easter in Marbella is one of the busiest times of the year as well as a cultural highlight on the calendar. Like almost all towns in Andalusia, Marbella celebrates Holy Week with religious processions, probably quite unlike anything you’ve seen before. Read the Rio Real Golf 2020 guide to Easter in Marbella to find out more and plan your holiday ahead.
What to expect at Easter processions in Marbella
The main components of a procession include:
Large floats (known as tronos) topped with religious figures, usually Christ or the Virgin Mary. The floats are richly decorated in gold or silver, hundreds of flowers and dozens of candles. They’re extremely heavy and it takes between 50 and 80 men to carry each one around the streets of Marbella.
Penitents (known as nazarenos) precede the floats. They wear tunics and sometimes cloaks as well as tall conical hats and carry lighted candles and/or crosses. They belong to the brotherhoods, also the custodians of the floats.
Bands play solemn music as the processions follow their route through Marbella.
Top tip – combine Holy Week processions in Easter with a round (or two) of golf at one of the best courses in Spain. And get your 20% discount on green fees at Rio Real, available throughout the year.
Times of processions at Easter in Marbella
Apart from the Easter Sunday procession that takes place in the morning, all Easter processions in Marbella happen in the evening. The weight of the thrones means progress is slow and the processions usually take hours to reach their final destination on their itinerary. Finishing in the early hours of the morning isn’t uncommon.
Top tip –choose your spot to watch the procession and arrive early to ensure a good view.
The best processions at Easter in Marbella
A procession takes place every day during Holy Week with the exception of Easter Saturday (11 April). We’ve picked the following as highlights worth seeing during your Easter holiday in Marbella.
Palm Sunday – 5 April from 6pm
This procession in Marbella is a family occasion and most of the penitents are children. They wear white and carry palm fronds. Two floats participate including one with a figure of Christ on a donkey. It leaves from Calle San Juan de Dios.
Santa María – Tuesday 7 April from 9pm
This counts as one of the largest processions at Easter in Marbella with a total of three floats. Penitents wear black tunics. The procession departs from the Plaza de la Iglesia.
Cristo del Amor – Thursday 9 April from 8pm
Another large procession with three floats. Participating brotherhoods wear green or red tunics. The ‘Christ of Love’ procession starts in the Plaza de los Naranjos.
Soledad – Friday 10 April from 10pm
The most solemn of all the processions at Easter in Marbella with a sole float carrying the mourning Virgin of Solitude. One of the most moving moments is when this float meets the Cristo Yacente (Christ Lying Down) float. This procession leaves from the Plaza de la Iglesia.
Top tip –for maps of the routes click here.
Other Easter processions worth seeing
All resorts on the Costa del Sol hold processions during Holy Week including the smallest villages. Those in Malaga rank among the most famous in Spain and include the largest and heaviest floats. One of the most popular takes place on Thursday 9 April when the Legionnaires arrive by boat in the city for their parade in the afternoon and evening.
For a full programme of processions during Easter in Malaga, click here.
Top tip – make a day out of your trip to Malaga and take in some of the city’s excellent museums and monuments while you’re there.Rio Real Boutique Hotel organises personalised day trips to Malaga – ask for details at reception when you check in.
Much more than processions
Of course Easter in Marbella doesn’t have to be just about processions. Spring has just arrived and with it one of the best times of the year on the Costa del Sol. Expect lots of sunshine and warm temperatures, perfect for sightseeing, relaxing at our Boutique Hotel and enjoying a round of golf on our iconic course.
This year, all bookings at our resort (hotel and green fees) come with a 20% discount because it’s 2020. Make the absolute most of Easter in Marbella and pay 20% less for a Stay & Play package – book yours now.
Fotografía Copyright: José Hidalgo, Patronato de Turismo de la Costa del Sol