Day Of Asturias

Day of Asturias is an autonomous community public holiday that’s observed annually in Asturias, Spain, on the 8th of September each year. This day commemorates the Battle of Covadonga when Christian King Pelayo defeated the Moors back in 722 AD. Although this day has been celebrated for hundreds of years, it wasn’t made an official public holiday until 1984.

Since it’s a public holiday, it’s a day off for the general population, and most government offices, schools, and businesses are closed for the day. Since it also marks the birth of the Blessed Virgin, it’s a day on which the faithful attend religious services.

The History Of Day Of Asturias

During the 8th century, the Moors took control of the Asturian region of Spain. Around 722 CE, the Battle of Covadonga was a significant Christian victory in Iberia. The troops who won this battle attributed their success to a statue of the Virgin Mary that they had placed in a cave outside the village of Covadonga.

This day would be celebrated for many hundreds of years, but it wouldn’t become an official holiday until June 28th, 1984. Although the date of the Battle of Covadonga is largely unknown, it was decided that September 8th would be used for the celebration of this holiday because it’s the day of the year when the birth of the Virgin Mary is traditionally celebrated.

Observing The Day Of Asturias

This holiday is now observed with a myriad of different activities throughout Asturias. People go to services at San Salvador Cathedral in Oviedo and at other churches across the autonomous community. There are also music, dance, and a lot of food on this day. There are street parties, concerts, and communal meals.

Foods that take center stage on this holiday include Fabada Asturiana — a stew that’s made with white beans, chorizo, pork shoulder, and saffron. There’s also a fish stew called Caldereta, and a dish made with beef, onions, and white wine called Carne Gobernada.

Where is it celebrated?
Spain (Local holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
September 8 Sunday
Next year (2025)
September 8 Monday
Last year (2023)
September 8 Friday