May Cross 2023 in Velez Malaga

The Cruz de Mayo (May Cross) and the legacy of the Catholic Kings in Velez-Malaga

Here is the essential information about the May Cross and the legacy of the kings in Velez-Malaga :

  • A few words about Velez-Malaga and these celebrations
  • The dates and programme of the May Cross
  • Where is Velez Malaga?
  • What to do in Velez-Malaga?
  • Booking accommodation
  • Some useful links

A few words about Velez-Malaga and the May Cross

Velez Malaga is the capital of Axarquia, in the province of Malaga. It is a small town with an incredible historical and artistic heritage.

velez malaga iglesia Sta Maria Mayor encarnacion
Iglesia Santa Maria Mayor de la Encarnacion

The May Crosses in Velez-Malaga

The May Crosses in Velez-Malaga was declared in 2020 : Provincial Tourist Singularity Festival.

As you will see below, this date is very special for the people of Velez-Málaga.

It is a very old celebration: originally it was to commemorate the discovery by Saint Helena, mother of the emperor Constantine, of the true cross of Jesus Christ during her pilgrimage to Jerusalem.

cartel Cruz de Mayo 2023 Velez Malaga

May crosses are often made with red flowers. In the Roman rite, this festival linked to the Passion of Christ was celebrated with red.

The legacy of the Catholic Kings in Velez Málaga

In Velez-Malaga there is an important historical fact linked to the Cruz de Mayo. Velez-Malaga was taken over by the Catholic kings on 27 April 1487. However, King Ferdinand wanted to wait until the day of the Holy Cross, 3 May, to be handed the keys of the city by the Nasrid governor Abul Casin.

Until that day, Velez Malaga was called Madinat Balish (مدينة بلش).

velez malaga entrada muralla arabe
Entrance door to the medina of Velez Malaga

This historical fact is unique, Velez Malaga is the only city in Spain whose incorporation into the Crown of Castile is linked to the date of the Holy Cross. For this reason, Velez-Málaga was known as Vélez-Málaga de la Cruz from the 15th to the 17th century!

Below is a short video (2022) showing the parade of the legado de los reyes in Velez-Malaga:

Dates and programme of Cruz de Mayo in Velez-Málaga

This festival is of historical, ethnological and cultural interest.

29 April – 07:30 PM : Parade through Velez Málaga retracing the history of the entry into the city by the Catholic Kings

Between 27 April and 3 May: several festivities will take place, and of course you should go for a walk to see the twenty or so crosses on display in the town

3 May: awards for the most beautiful “cruces de mayo” in Velez Malaga

Where is Velez Malaga?

What to do in Velez Malaga?

Paseo caballo en Andalucia 7

In the surroundings of the village, it is possible to find very nice activities:

  • horse riding, on the beach or in the mountains
  • diving in Nerja and Torrox
  • guided tours (villages of Axarquia, Cordoba, Alhambra,…)
  • via ferrata (Caminito del Rey,…)
  • hiking (El Saltillo with the hanging bridge,…)
  • canyoning (in the rio Verde,…)
  • astrotourism
  • snorkeling
  • visit of caves

Use the following link to access all the activities to do. during your holidays. This link provides you with all the details of each activity.

Booking accommodation

Below you will find a direct link to the available accommodation in Velez Malaga. Simply enter the desired dates.

Some useful links

Here is a great car rental agency in Andalusia and more specifically at Malaga airport : book a rental car.

Find out all about the most spectacular fair of the year in the province of Málaga: The Malaga Fair

And finally, here are some other experiences to do Malaga province :

Discover other great places in Andalucia in the Andalucia blog pages.

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