Holidays and Festivals in Cuenca

Religious Music Week

This festival blends world-class orchestras, which match in tune with how the choirs sing. Religious songs are performed as they go from one place to another in procession. The festival lasts a week long and merges with the festivities of Easter. Every year, there are international orchestras and soloists, who come here to perform. There is a chain of concerts, which features new compositions, old pieces and of course the traditional and religious music.

San Mateo

This is one of the essential festivals in this region. The origin dates back to the conquest of Alfonso VIII, in 1177, and the monarch is known to have rewarded his army with a huge celebration. The festival happens in September and revolves around two distinctive events. At first, there is a ceremony to transfer, which has been followed for centuries having started by Royal Decree. This is celebrated through popular bullfighting at the Plaza Mayor. It is followed by parades, dances, concerts, cultural activities, competitions, etc.

Other Events:

  • The Cuenca International Art Bienal is one of the biggest art exhibitions which take place between the months of November to February.
  • Festival de la Madre Tierra is the celebration of Earth Day, which features speeches, music and plays.
  • The Cuenca International Theater Festival takes place in conjunction with art Biennial. The city features plays done by renowned locals and international performers.
  • The International Orchid Show attracts international elites from Japan, the US and other parts of Europe.
  • Feria Artesanales is an event when craftsmen from Latin America meet at the CIDAP museum on April. There is an arts and crafts fair which spills over nearby regions.
  • There is an International Food Fair which Cuenca hosts, and dozens of countries come here to participate.
  • Pase de Niño is a parade which goes on for 7 hours on the eve of Christmas. This is followed all through the historic district and is accompanied by craft fair and local gastronomy.
  • The famous Cuenca Art Walks is reflected in the historic district, and more than 60 artists showcase their work through 40 different locations.

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