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  • Writer's pictureMaría Molina

New Year's Eve in Spain

Eating twelve grapes at midnight on December 31 to welcome the New Year is a Spanish custom that dates back to the end of the 19th century and became popular in the early years of the 20th century. It is said that specifically in 1909, as a result of the great grape harvest of that year.


According to tradition, eating the twelve grapes leads to a year of good luck and prosperity.

Fresh grapes, usually green in color, are used and must be eaten to the rhythm of the 12 chimes of a clock that marks midnight and the end of the year.


There are two main places where people gather to eat the grapes: at home with the family after the New Year's Eve dinner, with friends, or in the main squares of the country, being the Puerta del Sol in Madrid the most famous place to do it and where this tradition started..


New Year's Eve Celebration at Puerta del Sol
New Year's Eve Celebration at Puerta del Sol

Since 1962 the chimes have been televised on several channels with broadcasts from different places. Below you can see a group of friends taking the grapes in front of the TV.




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