Noche de San Juan

noche de san juan marbella

La Noche de San Juan, or San Juan Night, is a festival marked by ritual and celebrated throughout Spain commemorating the shortest night and longest day of the year. Each region of Spain has a different twist on how they celebrate it, however they all incorporate bonfires, good food and drink, and great friends. Basically, it is as good a reason as any to party. 

The festival of San Juan is held on the eve of June 23 and lasts until the wee hours of June 24th. It traditionally marks the beginning of the summer solstice and has its roots in pagan rituals.

The elements of fire, water and light are all embedded in the tradition. Massive bonfires are built on the beaches in Marbella and the Costa del Sol, which represent purification of the spirit. Huge papier mâché figures and faces are then burned through the night, sometimes starting only at midnight.

There is also a tradition, which states that if you jump over the bonfire three times on San Juan Night, you will be cleansed and purified burning all your problems away. 

where to go for noche de san juan on the costa del sol

Malaga | Torremolinos | Fuengirola | Marbella | San Pedro | Estepona |Manilva 


noche de san juan marbella
  • Main beaches: Playas de La Malagueta, La Misericordia, El Palo, Limasa, San Andrés, Sacaba y El Dedo.
  • Including dancing, barbecues, music, performers and fireworks.
  • Palma-Palmilla has a special celebration with activities during the daytime.


noche de san juan marbella
  • Torremolinos has big events every year celebrated in San Juan and Catarranzas
  • Benalmádena celebrates San Juan on their beaches at Castillo del Bil-Bil as well as in the town center with street fair.


noche de san juan marbella
  • Castillo Sohail has a white party that starts early afternoon and end early hours of the morning the next day.
  • Including dancing, barbecues, music, performers and fireworks.


noche de san juan marbella
  • La Playa del Cable has a big fire put on by the city.
  • Levante beach in Puerto Banus has a huge evening.
  • Including dancing, barbecues, music, performers and fireworks.
  • Private parties are organized by places like Nikki Beach & Ocean Club.

san pedro de alcantara

noche de san juan marbella
  • The bigger fire will be at Playa la Salida
  • Including dancing, barbecues, music, performers and fireworks.
  • They will offer kids activities, a foam party and entertainment.


noche de san juan marbella
  • Playa la Rada has the famous "Sardinas espetos"
  • Playa del Cristo also has a great festive enviroment
  • Including dancing, barbecues, music, performers and fireworks.

sabinillas y manilva

noche de san juan marbella
  • Sabinillas always puts a lot of effort in to San juan with their fun creations of cartoon characters that they light on fire and dance around until the sun comes out.
  • Including dancing, barbecues, music, performers and fireworks.


Water is also brought into the equation to recuperate and rejuvenate. According to tradition, people jump into the water at midnight in order to wash away evil spirits. You may see others washing their faces and feet three times so they may be granted three wishes and have a successful and happy year ahead. It is also considered good for the skin and may heal certain skin conditions. 

According to mythology there are strange things that happen on the shortest night of the year. Pagan gods, for example, may appear at night, while mere mortals must give thanks and become conscious that harder times are to come. 

All in all, La Noche de San Juan is a festival that should not be missed. It is really awe inspiring to see the haze of hundreds of fires burning on the beach, masses of people enter the water simultaneously and feel at one with the locals in their joy and festive spirit. If you get the chance to celebrate San Juan Night with friends then take advantage. Surely, you will be briefed on all the ritual and tradition of the night. 

Don't forget to bring something to drink or eat, a sweater in case it gets cold, and possibly a towel in case you decide to jump in the water. If you bring along a dog or small children, keep in mind there may be fireworks in case this is a problem. There should be plenty of entertainment, music and concerts to keep you dazzled all night long.

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To learn more about Fiestas in Marbella on Noche de San Juan visit Marbella Town Hall