St. Thomas' day marks the beginning of Christmas in the Basque Country with the traditional markets of Santo Tomás in Bilbao and San Sebastián and the Santamasak in Arrasate / Mondragón.
Olentzero and Mari Domingi come down from their farmsteads to bring presents on Christmas eve and everybody welcomes them enthusiastically in the processions held in every town and village.
In the Basque Country you'll find authentic, attractive and innovative local shops, shops with a soul where you can buy the quality products you and yours deserve.
The monumental nativity scene in Vitoria-Gasteiz, with more than 200 life-size figures, is one of the most interesting in the world according to the World Federation of Friends of the Crèche.
Bilbao, San Sebastián, Vitoria and dozens of other towns and villages in the Basque Country hold the popular San Silvestre races on New Year's Eve.
Streets around the Basque Country are lit up with imaginative illuminations to spread the festive mood. Moreover, in some towns lighting the illuminations is a real event.
More and more towns are installing ice skating rinks as a leisure option for all the family. In places like Vitoria-Gasteiz it's a tradition that attracts thousands of people every year.
The craft markets installed in the streets of towns and villages are a meeting place where the public can buy products straight from the people who make them by hand.
The Three Kings arrive from the Orient loaded with presents to parade round the streets of towns and villages spreading joy. Together with their retinues, their floats are spectacular.
There's a very deeply-rooted tradition of climbing to the peak of some of our most beloved mountains like Gorbea, Adarra and Zaldiaran on 31st December and/or 1st January to toast the New Year.