As the proverb goes "A San Blas el tres de febrero no faltarás" (Don't miss the Feast of San Blas on February the third). The first traditional festival in As Rías Baixas is celebrated in Vigo with bagpipes, cocido (Galician stew) and a romaría (pilgrimage). Lots of fun!
This festival is more than just a traditional feast to honour the saint. Some days before the official date of the festival, the furanchos or loureiros season starts in the parish of Bembrive. These traditional and rustic establishments open their doors in mid-January so that you can get ready for the great day.
You certainly should visit one if you have the opportunity. Furanchos only open for a limited period of time a year. Originally, they were private homes where the surplus of homemade wine was served paired with traditional tapas, in a relaxed atmosphere enlivened with folk music.
The neighbourhood of Mosteiro fills up with thousands of people. They dance and sing to the rhythm of a muiñeira (a traditional Galician dance) and visit the furanchos to taste the delicious pork meat and other typical and good quality products at a budget price. After a copious meal, a digestif: our popular licor café (a strong spirit made of coffee, sugar and a kind of pomace brandy known as orujo).There are plenty of reasons to go.
People enjoy the traditional products of As Rías Baixas while dancing and singing to the beat of muiñeiras
During the weekends before the festival you can enjoy live music in these establishments. Everywhere, you will find people launching into a song or performances of folk bands from As Rías Baixas everywhere.
Other suggestions are wandering through the traditional stands, visiting the Santiago de Bembrive Church (from the 12th century) or the cruceiro (stone cross) of O Cacheno. According to the legend, this cruceiro was was commissioned by a neighbour who managed to survive after shaking a snake off using an apple. Apart from that, there are more than 130 hórreos (traditional Galician raised granaries) in Bembrive, and most of them are more than a hundred years old.
After the festival, the furanchos close and Bembrive becomes a quiet place again. The Feast of San Blas is the perfect opportunity to experience the locals' hospitality and enjoy the typical Galician je ne sais quoi. Wine, tapas and music to fight winter cold. Are you ready?