Traveling to Spain is a dream for many. After all, there are many gorgeous sights to see, such as the beaches of Barcelona and the cobblestone streets of Madrid. The architecture is just as inspiring, and if you’re looking for a dose of art, there’s also plenty to be had. However, there is more to Spain than all of the aforementioned above. The country also has quite an interesting culture and it pays to learn more about it before you travel to this beautiful country.
To help you out, here are a few things you won’t learn from online classes but are essential to know before you travel.
1. Spain is Comprised of Different Cultures
Most people would be familiar with the Catalans and the Basques, but there is more to discover when it comes to Spanish culture. Scattered across the country are many communities that have their own culture, cuisines, and even language. Autonomous communities such as those found in Leon, Galicia, and Asturias are all worth learning more about. So, why not go off the beaten path and explore places that aren’t as talked about on social media? Not only will you discover something new, but you’ll get credit for helping share their culture too.
2. It is Insulting to Sing The Words to The Spanish National Anthem
Some people tend to wrongly assume that the Spanish national anthem does not come with words. It does, but locals will tell you that it is considered insulting to sing or lip-sync the words whenever it is played. The reason for this is because the lyrics speak highly of Francisco Franco’s reign and the ideals of his fascist party. Both are sore points when it comes to the nationalistic spirit of Spain, and as such, people simply choose not to sing-along and let the electricity of the music take center stage instead.
3. Single Women in Madrid Have a Unique Way of Finding Love
All around the world, there are many unique superstitions when it comes to helping people find love. Spain is no different, and for single women living in Madrid, a trip to the Ermita de San Isidro every 15th of May is a must. This is the place where they literally prick their finger and “offer” a drop of blood to a vessel, which is supposed to bring them luck in the love department. Doesn’t it remind you a bit of Sleeping Beauty? Fortunately, this act does not result in years of sleep, though we’re not sure if it can bring about marriage either! As long as they don’t have to deal with insurance after the fact, this tradition is completely harmless.
4. Fresh Bread is an Essential Part of Meals
Every single day, loaves of bread are produced by the local panaderias or bakeries to meet the demands of households throughout the city. Bread is part of every meal, thanks to the fact that it is an affordable way of filling one’s stomach. These days, there are many different types to choose from, some of which have been influenced by other European countries as well. If you ever find yourself needing some, just pop by one of the shops and ask for pistolas or barras. You can never go wrong putting some of your investment money in these two!
5. It is Perfectly Legal to Jump Over Babies in Spain
Okay, before you start calling child services over this, do know that this is a tradition that’s only celebrated in one town in the entirety of the country. In Castrillo de Murcia, they celebrate El Colacho, which culminates in the spectacle of a man jumping over a line of babies. It is quite a strange sight to see and it isn’t just because of the babies, but also because of the fact that the “jumping man” is dressed like the devil. While it comes with a degree of risks, the act is said to cleanse the babies of their original sin and has been practiced for hundreds of years now.