Each tiny village has its own local festivities which can be either religious, non religious or simply traditional special occasions that started at some point in the village's history or in its agriculture, in the sea or in a forgotten time in these gorgeous lands.
From the beginning of May to the end of summer several pilgrimages to the hermitages and sanctuaries take place on their patron’s day.
Some of the most important local pilgrimages are;
-San Antonio in Torrox;
-San Isidro in Nerja, Almáchar, Lomas de la Vaca and Frigiliana;
-San Marcos in El Borge , Alfarnate, Alcázar y Alcaucín and the patron of Colmenar.
-The “Cruces de Mayo” takes place on the 3rd of May in Vélez-Málaga and in Nerja. Local people decorate their homes and the streets with beautiful crosses and they compete to see who has the prettiest.
The rest of the villages celebrate their patrons' day in summer. The sole exception is Nerja which has its patron’s day in October.
The Virgen del Carmen festivities are celebrated during the month of July in all the villages on the coast, from the Rincón de la Victoria to Nerja. The image of the Virgin is taken to the sea in a procession in order to bless its waters and to ensure fishing goes well during the year.
During the night of San Juan, Judas Iscariote is burnt on the bonfire as he has been for centuries in this part of the world. In Alfarnate and Benadalid you must not miss the “Fiestas de Moros y Cristianos” (The Christian and Moors Fair), their Wine Festival on the night of the 15th of August and the “Candelas” (Bonfires) in Cómpeta and in Comares in September.
The Summer is packed with similar events: flamenco and folk dancing festivals; the "Verdiales"are particularly popular in Vélez-Málaga, Colmenar, Comares and Macharaviaya. During the postromerías in July is the world famous Cuevas de Nerja Festival.
- The “Candelaria” takes place on the 2nd of February and it is typical throughout the province of Granada. The Alhama streets are lit by the "candelas" (bonfires) that the neighbours light.
- Carnival. In Alhama, carnival is an event that visitors from all over the region never miss, especially during the "Domingo de Piñata" (The Sunday after Ash Wednesday), which has been declared a Day of National Interest in Andalucía. Music is at the heart of the carnival, comparsas (small choirs) parade the streets singing their satiric chronicles of the past year's events as well as the mischievous "máscaras" who also roam the streets playing tricks on unsuspecting visitors.
- Semana Santa (Easter). Easter is an important occasion all over the province. Every single village proudly takes out their Holy Images out in procession. In Río Gordo, local people re-enact the Passion of Christ.
- Classical Music Festival. It generally takes place in July though it is sometimes changed to the month of August. During this Festival the traditional Classical Music Concert in the Cuevas de Nerja is held. Many great musicians have taken part in this event throughout the centuries: Tchaikovski; José Carreras; Ainoa Arteta; Monserrat Caballé and even Queen Sofía of Spain came to one of the concerts in 1991.
- Festival de Música Joven de Andalucía. This festival takes place approximately on the first weekend of August, (during the evenings, from Thursday to Saturday) in Alhama and is one of the oldest festivals in Spain. The first time it took place was in 1966 and new young groups and invited artists share their music in this unique event.
* Wine Festival. This event is particularly well known in Cómpeta. The 15th of August has as special meaning for Cómpeta Townspeople. On this day two special occasions are celebrated: their patron’s day, Our Lady of the Assumption, as well remembering the day the villagers used to bid farewell to the farmers who left on the following day to work in the grape harvest. .
Nowadays, this celebration is one of the main tourist attractions that take place during the summer and it has acquired international fame.
Among the activities that take place there are several cultural events in which poets, artists and writers take part. If you prefer a more folk atmosphere, song and dance shows are also on offer.
Last but not least we must mention the origin of this event: free wine tastings of the delicious regional wines made from muscatel grapes.
- Romería del Vino (The wine pilgrimage). On the 15th of August there is a wine tasting together with a tasting of some of Alhama's local products, for example their local chickpeas and jameño bacon.
- Fiesta de las Tres Culturas (The three cultures party). (Arabic, Jewish and Christian). In Frigiliana (Málaga), several entertaining activities such as musical parades, jugglers, fakirs, belly dancing as well as activities for children such as storytelling, traditional games, puppet shows, etc. are held on the streets on the last weekend of August