In Trinidad, popular festivals and celebrations are a unique staging of deeply-rooted traditions and an eventful history. Being a very religious town, Trinidad holds one of the most striking processions: the Procession of the Cross, which in the past served as a masquerade to mislead attacking pirates. As in the rest of Cuba, there are many art festivals and traditional parties with thousands of litres of rum flowing.
Major events in Trinidad
- January – Trinidad Cultural Week: The Cultural Week is one of the most important cultural events associated with the history of Trinidad, the Spanish influence, the colonial heritage and the Catholic faith. Choir music is one of the greatest attractions.
- February – Feast of La Candelaria: This deeply-rooted farming festival is held every year in the village of Condado to the delight of the local population. There are processions, family parties, meals and popular dances, plus a big fair to buy all kinds of local products.
- 3 February – Feast of Saint Blaise: This feast honouring the patron saint of Caracusey is one of the most traditional in the area, along with La Candelaria. There are big meals, religious offerings, Masses and local folk music performances.
- Good Friday – Procession of the Cross: This is the most celebrated and popular procession in Trinidad. Devotees and onlookers come together on the main streets of the old town, a Unesco World Heritage Site known as the ‘open-air museum of the Caribbean colonies.’
- May – May Cross Festival: Held in San Pedro, this is one of the most genuine Cuban festivals in Trinidad. There is dancing, chagüí music, traditional food, and barrels of rum.
- Late May – Corpus Christi: One of the most important popular events in Trinidad, Corpus Christi involves a big procession across the village dating back to the seventeenth century. The procession marks the beginning of greatest non-religious celebrations in this region in central Cuba: the Trinidad Carnival, merging Creole and Afro-Cuban traditions.
- May/June – Feast of Saint John: The Trinidad Carnival begins in late May. It is one of the most popular festivals in Trinidad, reaching its climax on the feast of Saint John, on 24 June. Religious celebrations and recreational activities follow one another for almost a month, from Eucharistic services to colourful float parades.
- July – Summer Festival: In July, Ancón beach in Trinidad plays host to lots of sports activities, children’s games, theatre plays, stand-up comedies, concerts and culinary events. All these mark the beginning of the summer season.
- 17 December – Feast of Saint Lazarus: This is a very popular festival in Trinidad and the surrounding area. Devotees go on processions to ask the saint for help. One year later, they return to thank him for his understanding or to renew their promises. There are recreational activities too.