facebook Google Plus twitter Pinterest Youtube english español deutsch français Pycckuй Netherlands Svenska Norsk Contact Hansa Realty



The November chill sets in, it’s never been the most favoured of months of the year. November marks the end of the harvest and the slaughter of wild stock for winter setting in. Ironic when ‘ALL HALLOWS EVE’ is the evening marked for you to be a vegetarian for the night. It is also a month of festivities in remembrance of the deceased. The festivities around this time have their roots in many cultures and folklore and Halloween in Spain has become a hybrid of traditions.We can’t guarantee you any Haunted Houses at HANSA REALTY. What we can offer you though are unique properties and the assurance our portfolio has no skeletons in the closet. We will partake in the celebrations and respect the beliefs and traditions here in Spain and around the world. We wouldn’t want to upset living or the dead.

There is a calendar of events from the 31st October – 2nd November connecting this Triduum of Allhallowtide: Triduum of All Saints.



  • ALL SAINTS DAY- All Hallows/Hallowmas – DAY OF THE DEAD



31st October is Halloween in Spain; it is translated as ‘Vispera del día de todo los Santos’ but more colloquially known as ‘Noche de Brujas’. ‘Night of Witches’.This is the evening of ‘guising’ and has become more ‘Americanised’ now and we tend to call it ‘trick or treating. It’s the same concept, dress in disguise from the returning souls, who are thought to pass though a thin veil at this time of year.

There is real meaning behind Trick or Treating, the act of going from door to door in exchange for food was to “personify the old spirits of the winter, who demanded reward in exchange for good fortune”. S.V Peddle



Trick or Treat


In the age of today though face paints have never been such fun, kids turn themselves into ghost, ghouls and zombies. The children are gifted with lots of goodies in exchange for a joke or a story. Well that’s as it should be, generally they just want the treat though!!

It’s a fun night and popular activities are dressing up, carving pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns, (well this is a project done in advance to let it dry out), dooking for apples, (water filled basin filled with apples and you grab one with your mouth), watching scary horror films and playing pranks.

It’s a tough old job carving a pumpkin and some examples are nothing short of genius.



Ray Villafane Pumpkin Sculptures


In Spain you will still observe Church Services, lighting candles and visiting the graves. Just as likely now though you will see children partake in all the above activities.

It is encouraged to be a vegetarian for the evening; this is why apples, cider, potato cakes and soul cakes are popular. This may have more to do with the end of the harvest. Samhain was the harvest festival in Celtic tradition and we can see where the blending of these celebrations developed.

Halloween is most likely of Celtic origins and Paganism; the Christians worked to adapt this to their own beliefs and there are mixed views over this. The word “Halloween” means “hallowed evening” or “holy evening”.


Holiday! This is what most people are thinking. It was made an official holiday in 835 AD by the Roman Catholic Church. This date coincides with the ‘Día de los Inocentes’, kids will play pranks on you on this day, so watch your back.

There is a belief that there is a prayerful spiritual bond between those in heaven and the living. Other Christian traditions define differently; ‘saints’ refer to all the Christians, as well as the deceased and everyone attends Church to honour and remember.

By tradition now in remembrance for over a century is the enactment of Don Juan Tenorio. Spain’s longest running play.


All Soul’s Day, November 2nd is a popular celebration in Spain and you will see locals make their way to Cemeteries laden with flowers to say a prayer for the dead. The Church refers to the day as of their book of liturgy its ‘The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed’. They normally will mark their respect on the 2nd November.



Laying of Flowers on All Souls Day


Children would traditionally go ‘souling’, which you could liken to carol singing. They’d sing for cakes. Soul cakes have simple ingredients and baked for 10-15 minutes, why not try some:

  • Ingredients:
  • 375g self raising flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 185g butter, at room temperature
  • 155g caster sugar
  • 90g currants
  • 90g sultanas
  • 1 egg
  • 125ml milk

This recipe carries the tradition of the Samhain harvest festival and you will encounter many variations adding different types of fruits and nuts.



Soul Cakes



It’s not all doom and gloom though because it’s not all about the mourning of deceased, but about the celebration of their lives a more joyous occasion.

When you think of ‘DAY OF THE DEAD’, which is ALL SOULS DAY, ‘Dia de los Muertos’, You would be right to think of Mexico as the origins of this sacred celebration, honouring, not mourning their deceased relatives.

In Spain it is a blend of pre-Hispanic indigenous beliefs and that of the Spanish Catholic Church. After Spain invaded Mexico and failed at their attempts to change their beliefs fully a compromise resulted in the blend of beliefs of which is practised today and in turn has influenced Europe as a result.

This is a joyous occasion in Mexico the ritual of attending to graves with ‘offerings’ gifts of sweets and toys for deceased children and more than likely tequila and favourite foods for the adults. They tend to the graves, laying flowers (traditionally Marigolds) and tell stories and jokes, some even hire musicians to come and play at the cemeteries.

Being that the fashionable, high-street trend is still focused on skulls; maybe you want to try your hand at making SUGAR SKULLS. These would be laid on graves in Mexico as sweet offerings.



Sugar Skulls


This festival celebration was the Aztecs honouring of the ‘Lady of the Dead’, ‘Queen of the Underworld’, ‘Mictecacihautl’. The celebration and it is just that originally lasted a month from July-August in relation to the Mayan Calender.

It is celebrated in Spain on November 1st and 2nd to honour their own Catholic beliefs of ‘All Saints’ Day’ and ‘All Souls’ Day’. In the same way they tend to the graves and lay flowers and light candles creating alter pieces by the gravesides and at home.  The candles give light to those deceased in the dark.

In Spain Church bells will ring out ‘to cleanse’ their newly deceased. The day is complete with street parades and music.

Today Mictecacihautl is more commonly known as ‘Catrina’. Death comes to us all is the message conveyed by Catarina.

There is an old saying ‘Don’t be afraid of the dead, be more afraid of the living’. We at Hansa Realty urge you not be afraid of us we are an Estate Agent with integrity, one that you can trust and believe in ‘RIP’ – Rest in Peace.


Published in Costa del Sol Property News, Spain Info, Unique Properties |