Spain’s National Day: Celebrating the 12th of October

MiMove on 2023-10-11

Spain’s National Day, known as “Fiesta Nacional de España,” is celebrated every year on the 12th of October. This significant day has historical and cultural importance for Spain and its people. In this blog, we’ll explore the origins, traditions, and the modern significance of the 12th of October in Spain.

1. Historical Significance: The 12th of October is known as “Dia de la Hispanidad” or Hispanic Day. It commemorates Christopher Columbus’s arrival in the Americas in 1492. Columbus’s discovery marked the beginning of Spain’s vast colonial empire.

2. Military Parade: A grand military parade is held in Madrid on the 12th of October each year. This parade showcases the Spanish armed forces, civil guard, and the police. It is a spectacle of precision and discipline and is attended by members of the royal family and other dignitaries.

3. Raising the Flag: In cities across Spain, the national flag is raised in public squares, schools, and official buildings. It’s a symbolic act of unity and pride in the nation’s heritage.

4. Spanish Flags and Symbols: Many people display Spanish flags or wear patriotic colors to show their national pride. Schools and communities often engage in activities related to Spain’s history and culture.

5. Reflection and Unity: The 12th of October serves as a day for the Spanish people to reflect on their shared history, celebrate their diverse cultures, and reaffirm their unity as a nation.

6. Worldwide Celebrations: Spain’s National Day is also celebrated in Spanish embassies and communities around the world. It’s an opportunity for the Spanish diaspora to connect with their heritage.

7. Protests and Controversy: While the National Day is a cause for celebration for many, it is not without controversy. In some regions of Spain, especially Catalonia, there have been protests and demonstrations on this day, reflecting ongoing political and regional tensions.


Spain’s National Day, celebrated on the 12th of October, is a day of historical and cultural significance. It honors the country’s rich heritage, diverse cultures, and unity as a nation. While it brings people together in celebration, it also highlights ongoing political and regional tensions within Spain. The 12th of October is a day that reflects Spain’s complex identity and its place in the modern world.

Photo by Chris Boland