Fiesta de los Rondeles. Casarabonela. December. Unique Festival
This festival has been declared to be of Tourist Interest by the Provincial Council of Málaga.
Please check with the local Town Hall or Municipal Tourism Office for the festival date before planning any sightseeing activities.
When night falls in the village of Casarabonela on 12 December the whole village goes dark so that the touch-lit route set out for the Virgen de la Divina Pastora can be followed by her from the centre of the village from the Ermita de la Iglesia.
With this festivity the villagers wish to express their gratitude for the good harvest that year.
La Fiesta de los Róndeles starts in the Plaza de la Ermita de Vera Cruz where a huge bonfire is lit. The men of the village, all dressed up in their traditional dress, come with their torches soaked in oil and light them in the fire. They then proceed out of the square with lighting the way for the Virgin and the inhabitants to follow all the way to the church.
A group of church singers follow behind the Virgin singing traditional Christmas carols from the village, many of which are over five hundred years old.
When the procession eventually reaches the church the choir of people sing Salve a la Virgen. On completion of the religious part of this festivity, the inhabitants go back to the Village Square to have a feast of hot chocolate, bunelos, and olive oil on toast.
This century-old festivity was not celebrated during the Civil War, but in 1974 it was given new life and was reorganised. An Association named Amigos de Los Róndeles was set up due to the importance the event had in the village and today the whole festivity, including the programme and the religious acts, is run by its members.