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Palma Three Kings Parade Review 2017

The Three Wise Men paraded through the streets of Palma in style

featured in Events reviews Author Jose Rains, Mallorca Reporter Updated

As most countries in the world begin to wrap up their Christmas festivities, in Spain the Christmas holidays are still in full swing. 

Every year, on the eve of the Epiphany on the 6th January (known to us as the 12th Day of Christmas), the ‘Three Kings Parade’ takes places in cities, towns and villages across Spain in commemoration of the three wise men who brought gold, frankincense and myrrh to the baby Jesus. It is the most exciting day for Spanish children, as traditionally the Three Kings Parade is where Three Kings ride through the streets of Palma on their camels giving sweets and gifts to children. Once home, typically they then leave their shoes out, the next morning finding their gifts near the shoes.

On the 5th January 2017, as dusk loomed on a chilly winter's evening in Palma, thousands of families rushed to take their places in the streets ahead of the 18:00 bell chimes, which mark the start of the Three Kings Parade (Reyes Magos). Traditionally the parade starts at 18:00 at Moll Vell (the old port of La Lonja) in front of Palma’s Cathedral, where the Three Kings begin their epic journey by boat. The grand entrance always complemented by some suitably theatrical music and cheers from crowds on the dock who hope to catch a glimpse of their majesties Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar.

Once I reached the ‘start line’ where the parade would begin, I waited patiently alongside the mass of families, as little echoes of children talking about the Three Kings (Los Reyes) travelled through the crowds. Just after 18:00, the music was cranked up a notch, before the parade started with an ornate display of floats. Before long, children began to climb onto the shoulders of their parents for a better view of what was to come. The extravagant procession included floats of religious icons like the Angel Gabriel as well as circus performers, singers, dancers and sights of children’s iconic fictional characters. The trains full of toys and sweets, which were being distributed generously to the spectators were naturally a favourite amongst the children.

The street became alive within minutes as Christmas tracks like Mariah Carey’s ‘All I want for Christmas is You’ added to the magical party atmosphere. Just before 18:30, the three kings appeared and greeted the excited children and adults as they waited to join the procession. One-by-one the kings took their place on their individual thrones, each with a roaring applause from the crowd. They then set off on their journey through the streets of Palma accompanied by their own camels, royal pages and dancers.

The parade route followed Avenue Antoni Maura, Passeig Borne, Plaza Joan Carles I, C/ Unió, La Rambla, Via Roma, C/ Bisbe Campins, C/ Cerdanya, Paseo Mallorca, Avenue Jaime III, Plaza Joan Carles I, Passeig Borne again, and Plaza de la Reina before finishing in Plaza Cort at 21:00.

This event is a definite must for anyone who is visiting Palma over the Christmas period, particularly those with a sweet tooth.


Map of the surrounding area