Burning the moustaches of San Juan

Bonfires on the beach

Bonfires on the beach Photo: Estepona Town Hall

The Noche Flamenca (Flamenco night) to celebrate San Juan will take place on the beach of La Rada in Estepona on Sunday June 23 and will start at 8pm with performances by DJs ENZOBV and Miguel Carrasco, and the XLIV ‘Quema de los Bigotes de San Juan’ contest.

In Estepona there has been a competition since the 1970s called ‘Quemando los Bigotes de San Juan’ (Burning the moustaches of San Juan) the moustache is a euphanism for ‘bad people’ since bandeleros or bandits, often had moustaches.

For 2024, the event will feature a concert by the singer Manuel Cortés. The performance will start at 10pm, although the party will get going around 8pm and the bonfires will be lit at midnight.

The locals build ephemeral ‘Júas’, rag dolls with which they make fun of well-known characters, which are burnt at the bonfire at the end of the evening’s entertainment. The Town Hall will award six prizes this year for the best character with a first prize of €1,000 and a trophy.

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Written by

Kevin Fraser Park

Kevin was born in Scotland and worked in marketing, running his own businesses in UK, Italy and, for the last 8 years, here in Spain. He moved to the Costa del Sol in 2016 working initially in real estate. He has a passion for literature and particularly the English language which is how he got into writing.