Planning a destination wedding? Spain is the place to be. The Mediterranean country is full of beautiful landscapes, from the Best Beaches to mountains, warm weather, distinct culture, and unique wedding traditions. If you’re not sure where to host your big day yet, here are eight reasons why you should consider hosting your wedding in Spain.
If you’re the giving type and love offering meaningful gifts, Spanish weddings are for you. During the wedding, guests will approach the happy couple to thank them for the invitation, and to personally deliver gifts, giving the day an extra special touch. Later during the celebration, the bride and groom will go to each table handing guests party favors as a ‘thank you’ for coming.
2. Traditional Symbols and Gifts
The couple also exchanges gifts during the ceremony. Traditionally, the groom is given a cigar, while the bride is given a pin. Today, however, many couples opt out of the tradition in favor of more personal gifts. Another traditional gift given from husband to wife in Catholic weddings are the 13 coins, or arras. The 13 coins, one for Jesus and each of his apostles, symbolize the husband’s commitment to the wife, and bring luck to the marriage.
3. Flower Arrangements
The flower arrangements in Spanish weddings are definitely one of the most important parts. Brides typically spend a large amount of time on the right arrangement, but the traditional bouquet mainly consists of orange blossoms. The orange blossoms are simple, yet elegant flowers with white petals and a yellow or orange center. The flower is a symbol in Spanish marriages: the white of the petals represents the purity of the bride while the flower as a whole, which blossoms alongside the fruit, is said to bring happiness and success to the marriage.
4. The Ceremony
Spanish celebrations are big. The ceremony typically begins in the early afternoon with a religious ceremony at the church and often takes around an hour or more. In Spanish weddings, there are no bridesmaids or groomsmen — great if you have too many friends to choose from. Instead, the only people to stand beside the happy couple are the parents. After exchanging the rings, the bride and groom are wrapped in a rosary, meant to protect the marriage. Upon leaving the ceremony, guests will shower the newlywed couple in rice or rose petals.
5. The Celebration
After the church, the wedding heads to a celebration that can go often continue into the early hours of the following morning, much like the majority of Nightlife in Spain. Most often, somewhere around 200 to 300 guests will join the bride and groom in the celebrations. At the celebration, the main table consists of the bride, the groom, both sets of parents, and any children the couple may have.
6. The Food
Um, hello, Spanish food? A wedding in Spain comes with all the best flavors, leaving your guests talking about the wedding food for ages afterward. As typical in Spain, the dinner at the wedding happens later in the night but will be worth the wait. Typically, you’ll see lots of locally caught seafood, olive-filled dishes and cocktails, jamon serrano, cheeses, and tapas, as well as traditional dishes like paella and gazpacho.
7. The Drinks
The drinks served at the festivities are no less delicious. Try a fresh sangria or the tinto de verano, a soda or fruit juice and wine. Don’t forget, you can’t go wrong with a simple glass of fine Spanish wine, either!
The traditional dance at a Spanish wedding isn’t your typical waltz. In Spain, the traditional dance is the Seguidillas Manchegas. The dance comes from La Mancha, Spain, and is performed to the music of a live band. The dance dates back centuries, making it a unique aspect very tied to Spanish culture.