This fiesta is great fun and I’ve taken part in several!
Decorated boats travel up and down the coast, carrying statues of the Virgin Mary on board.
There is plenty of beer drinking and eating on the boats and there is a great atmosphere in the harbours. The fiesta actually goes (in the South) from Mogan to Arguineguin then back again the following week. Since I work in Puerto Escala (one of the harbours in Puerto Rico) I get the boat from there.
You need to bring some food and drink and be lucky enough to get invited on to one of the boats. Since I have worked in the harbour for years, know everyone and sell fishing trip tickets, I don’t have any problems!
The Virgin Mary is carried from port to port as a mark of respect and to ask for an abundant fishing season. She is the Patron Saint of fisherman.
Galdar and Puerto de la Aldea are good places to see the processions and sometimes the partying goes on all week. There are also celebrations in the streets. You will see a lot of people on the beaches watching the decorated boats go past and lots of people jumping into the sea to join in.
If you’re coming to Gran Canaria on holiday, make sure you take part in Fiesta del Carmen 2008 or at least have a good view of the procession from anywhere along the South coast!