Marbella, the famous sun-drenched resort in Southern Spain, is always a hive of activity, but never more so than at the beginning of June, when the city honours its patron saint San Bernabé. If you are on holiday in the area at the time, you really must go and join in the action. |
Marbella San Bernabé Fair
With festivities in the shape of dancing, entertainment, food, drink and music taking place over a whole week, there is so much to see and do here. Presiding over the Fair are the King and Queen of the proceedings, two people chosen in a competition that takes place a week before the fair starts.
To mark the opening of the celebrations, following an official inauguration on the Sunday before the fair begins, everyone heads to the beach close to the El Fuerte Hotel where an impressive firework display lights up the night sky. Locals and tourists alike join in the fun, and from here on in the place is alive with a joyous commotion for a whole week. The activities taking place during the day happen in the old part of Marbella and the night time shenanigans happen just outside of town, close to the La Cañada shopping precinct. There is a bus service to and fro that runs all night.
If you want to find out what’s going on and when, pick up a free guide at the Tourist Office, which is located on Plaza del Naranjo in the old town. The staff is very friendly and a great source of information when it comes to planning your festival must-sees.
But Who Was St Bernabé (St Bernard)?
This revered figure was a French abbot who lived from 1090 to 1153. After joining the Cistercian order, he was chosen to found a new abbey in the Val d'Absinthe (Clairvaux). He was involved in leading the cause for the election of Pope Innocent II and managed to persuade several countries, but not all, to follow his lead.
He was committed to changing the minds of the Italians, Constantinople, and the Sicilians, among others. Eventually, Pope Eugene III - a disciple of Bernabé - was elected. Because of the influential role Bernabé had to play, he was chosen to join the fight against heresy, which led to his involvement in the Crusades. He was the first Cistercian to gain a place in the calendar of saints, and in 1174 Pope Alexander III canonised him. In 1830, the Pope gave him the title of ‘Doctor of the Church’.
Fun At The Fair
The fair that’s celebrated in honour of Marbella’s patron saint is a wonderful example of a typical Andalucian festival. There is a mass held at the chapel of Pinar de Nagüeles on the Sunday, which marks the real beginning of all the festivities. From dances by local schools to professional bullfighting and from Piñata Surpris to fairground attractions, there is something to keep everyone happy. There is so much to see here and while one moment you could be watching the Pilgrimage San Bernabé, the next you could be tasting free churros with chocolate.
Head to the grounds at Avenida Las Albarizas and Calle Platino, where you will find the entrance to the tents and other attractions just near the Three Boat Fountain (Fuente de los Tres Barcos).
Festivities for the Kids
Kids are well catered for, with a Child Hut on site at the fairgrounds and special child-only activates. There is a free fiesta for children with bouncy castles, entertainments and free cake!
If you want to experience a real Andalucian celebration, stay in Marbella in June and you’ll be sure to be part of an unforgettably festive atmosphere!
How to Get There
Málaga Airport is well served by direct flights from several major European airports, and if you are flying from the UK, you are almost spoiled for choice. Flights connect London, Newcastle, Birmingham, Glasgow and Nottingham with Málaga and if you book with a low cost airline such as easyJet, you can get a great deal (less than £100 if you pick your dates carefully).
The transfer from Málaga Airport to Marbella takes around 45 minutes. For a hassle free, door to door service, we at Shuttle Direct offer private or shared transfers from Málaga Airport to Marbella. Our shuttles are driven by expert drivers who meet you at the Arrivals hall and whisk you straight to your hotel. You can also book both legs of your journey in advance so you can be extra organised!
Lukas Johannes is a driver for Shuttle Direct, the number one provider of shared and private airport transfers all over Europe and northern Africa. If you’re looking for an affordable transfer fromMalaga airport to Marbella, Lukas and his colleagues can make sure that you and your luggage get to and from the airport swiftly and safely.
Related Articles -
Málaga, airport, to, Marbella,