The Descent of the Virgin of Las Nieves

The Descent of the Virgin of Las Nieves, celebrated every five years in Santa Cruz de La Palma since 1680, is the more bigger festival of La Palma, a unique festivity that pays tribute to the island’s patron saint from July to August. Declared a National Tourist Interest Festival in 1980, it was honored in 2007 by the International Center for Heritage Conservation. The next edition, scheduled for 2025, promises to be unforgettable, as the 2020 one was canceled due to the pandemic.

The Descent of the Virgin of Las Nieves

Don’t Miss the special Festival La Palma Descent of the Virgin of La Palma: A Colorful Fiesta Brimming with History and Charm

For over a month, a broad program of religious and recreational events fills the streets and squares of the capital. The Descent of The Virgin is the jewel of the festivities in Santa Cruz de La Palma.

The celebrations of the Descent La Palma start with preparatory functions and the transfer of the image from the sanctuary to the heart of the historic center, where it resides in the Parish Church of El Salvador during the Descent. On the first Sunday of July, the pilgrims bring down the silver pieces that make up the Virgin’s throne in an event known as the Descent of the Throne La Palma.

The “Semana Chica” begins with the Pilgrimage, followed by the nighttime parade of the Pandorga La Palma, where thousands of colorful lanterns light up the dark streets, accompanied by children and the band. The “Semana Grande“, starting the second Sunday of July, features the big heads, the dance of the big heads, and the Minué, a recreation of the elegance of the 18th century.

One of the highlights of the festivities is the Dance of the Dwarfs, where dancers represent various characters before transforming into dwarfs and dancing an exhilarating and fast-paced polka. Other traditional acts include the Allegorical and Triumphant Cart, the Acrobats Dance, and the Dialogue between the Castle and the Ship.

enanos la palma
the virgen de las nieves

Grand Finale of the Descent of the Virgin of Las Nieves: Procession and Farewell

The Loa of Reception, a composition performed by a choir, soloists, and symphony orchestra, takes place when the Virgin of Las Nieves arrives at Plaza de España, marking the climax of the Lustrous Festivities of La Palma. The festivities conclude on August 5 with a procession accompanying the image’s return to its sanctuary.


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