Andalusia Day or ‘Dia de Andalucia,’ is celebrated every year on February 28 in Spain. Andalusia is located in the southernmost region of the country and on this day in 1980, the people of the region voted to make it an autonomous community in Spain. The word ‘autonomous’ implies the power of a community or territory to self-govern and make its own decisions without outside interference. Although a few nationalist groups prefer to celebrate on December 4, February 28 is the officially recognized date for Andalusia Day.
History of Andalusia Day
On February 28, 1980, the people of Andalusia organized and held a referendum, titled the ‘Statute of Autonomy of Andalusia referendum.’ The purpose of the vote was to decide on the independence of the Andalusian community. The referendum was successfully passed and from that day, Andalusia became autonomous.
However, a few nationalist groups choose to celebrate Andalusia Day on December 4, a date which marks the demonstrations to demand independence that took place in 1977.
Andalusia Day is celebrated as a community public holiday where businesses may close to participate in the festivities. It is, however, only celebrated in Andalusia and not the rest of Spain.
Some schools may also close for a week to participate in a ‘Semana Cultural’ or ‘Semana Blanca’, which means a cultural week or white week respectively. Schools also celebrate the Friday before Andalusia Day with a traditional Andalusian breakfast of sliced toast drizzled in olive oil and a cup of orange juice. Students also color in pictures of the symbols of Andalusia.
Andalusia Day is usually observed by families in intimate gatherings, although festivals and other social activities also mark the day. The people of Andalusia usually decorate their buildings with the national flag, as well as green and white bunting.
Andalusia is located in Southwestern Europe, south of the Iberian Peninsula. It is largely an agricultural community, though, in recent times, it has seen exponential growth in industrialization. Andalusia has eight parts to it, Almeria, Cádiz, Córdoba, Granada, Huelva, Jaén, Málaga and the capital city of the community, Seville.
Andalusia Day timeline
The flag of Andalusia is designed by Blas Infante, a writer, historian, and politician also referred to as the father of Andalusian nationalism.
A public protest takes place to demand Andalusian autonomy.
The ‘Statute of Autonomy of Andalusia’ referendum is passed into law.
The Parliament of Andalusia grants the Medal of Andalusia to Miguel Báez Espuny and honors José de Sousa Saramago, with the title, ‘the Favorite Son of Andalusia.’
Andalusia Day FAQs
Does Andalusia have a president?
Yes. The current president of Andalusia is Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla.
What language is spoken in Andalusia?
Spanish is the official language, although you will find different dialects depending on the region.
Is Andalusia a small community?
Andalusia is home to over eight million people so, a relatively large population considering its size, a little over 87,000 kilometers square.
How to Observe Andalusia Day
Spend time with friends and family
For all the wonderful Andalusian people, celebrate this special day by taking the time to spend with friends and family. Also take a moment to reflect on what being part of a community means to you.
Celebrate with color
Decorate your home, office, or place of business with colors representing Andalusia. The colors of their national flag are dark green and white.
Use the hashtag
Spread the sense of pride in the community on Andalusia Day by using the hashtag #andalusiaday on all your social media platforms. Start an online conversation.
5 Fun Facts About Andalusia
Andalusia is one of the autonomous communities in Spain with the largest population.
Land of the vandals
Andalusia means ‘land of the vandals.,’ and refers to a German tribe that settled there in the third and fourth centuries and were considered destroyers.
Caves of Nerja
In Andalusia’s Caves of Nerja, the earliest-known artwork in human history was found.
It was from Andalusia that Christopher Columbus embarked on his famous journey of discovering America.
Andalusia’s hinterland is the hottest region of Europe.
Why Andalusia Day is Important
It’s a declaration of independence
The day is a joyful reminder of the fact that Andalusia is a self-governing community. It’s a celebration of the region’s history in achieving sovereignty.
It’s an opportunity to have fun
Andalusia Day affords individuals the chance to partake in activities. Look out for community events such as cultural week or festivals that pay homage to this day.
It reminds us of the value of community
Andalusia Day promotes a great sense of community among Andalusians. The shared history helps to break down barriers.
Andalusia Day dates