On June 23, shortly after sunset, bonfires are lit everywhere in Tenerife. Sign that the annual Noche de San Juan has started. This is the eve of the commemoration of the birthday of John the Baptist, San Juan in Spanish.
Incidentally, the tradition of St. John's Night is not limited to Tenerife: all over the world there are numerous parties and customs to celebrate this special night. That this roughly coincides with the solstice (shortest night of the year, June 21) is not surprising. Ancient pagan customs and religion go hand in hand in this enchanting night.
Fire, water and magical rituals
The main elements during the Noche de San Juan are fire and water. The fire is a symbol to burn everything that is bad. For example, there is the ritual of writing things you want to let go on a piece of paper and entrusting them to the flames. And of course, the evening isn't complete if you haven't jumped over the bonfire at least once. It would also bring good luck to jump the fire an odd number of times.
As we are surrounded by water on our beautiful island, many of these bonfires usually take place on the beach, so you can then 'cleanse' yourself in the Atlantic Ocean to wash off the negative energy.
Of course you can also come up with your own ritual. The main thing is that you make it a fun evening!
How and where can I join?
If you want to organize a hoguera, or bonfire, yourself, you must officially request this in the municipality where you live or stay. For the Municipality of Adeje you will find the link for an application form here. Make sure you carefully observe the associated safety measures.
If you find it is too much hassle to apply for permission, the alternative is just to walk along the boulevard after sunset and join any of the bonfires. If you ask nicely (and maybe bring a cold six-pack of beer to share) you will surely be allowed to jump over their fire. Insider tip includes the beach of Playa de la Enramada in Costa Adeje.
Have fun and ¡Hasta pronto!