Velez Malaga Holy Week 2022

Semana Santa Holy Week Velez Malaga 2022 poster

Velez Malaga celebrates Holy Week every year with incredible fervour

The Holy Week celebrations in Velez Malaga are very well known throughout Andalucia, and in particular throughout the province of Malaga. Velez Malaga is much smaller than its big sister Malaga. They are only 40 km apart.
However, the fame of the Semana Santa in Velez alaga, the capital of Axarquia,  is great. It is recognised as the “Fiesta de Interés Turístico Nacional en España“.
The dates of Semana Santa in 2022: 10 to 17 April
There is a great deal of local fervour for these celebrations, which combine religion, culture and local traditions.

Semana Santa in video

In the video, below, from the director Jason Li, you can see the intensity and emotion that can be felt during the processions. In the video we can see processions in the cities of Malaga, Ronda, Velez-Malaga and Alhaurin el Grande. The passage filmed in Velez Malaga is during a procession of the brotherhood Nuestra Sra de la Soledad :

The peculiarities of Semana Santa in Velez Malaga

There are 19 brotherhoods (cofradías) in Velez-Malaga. They all organise at least one procession. During Semana Santa we can see 27 thrones in procession!
The latest brotherhood to be recognised in 2011 is the Cofradía de Nuestro Padre Jesús Coronado de Espinas. Easter Sunday morning (which celebrates “Jesus risen from the dead”) sees all the brotherhoods marching through the city!

The processions in Velez Malaga have 3 particularities:

  • The penitents (penitentes) are those who wear the cone-shaped hat (el capirote) locally called el cucurucho.
  • The Nazarenes (Nazarenos) are those who parade behind the throne but do not wear this pointed hat.
  • The ‘horquilleros’ are those who carry the throne. In Málaga they are called the men of the throne (hombres de trono). In Velez Malaga they are so called because in the past they used to carry forks (horquillas) to support the throne during the stops. It is customary for them to distribute “peladillas” (sweet almonds) to the children.
  • The processions move more slowly than in the rest of Andalucia. The penitents walk slowly, using a short step to advance. It is even referred to as the “Velez step”. However, this step has now been adopted in other towns in Andalucia!
NB: I would like to thank Maria del Mar for the details of the local specificities.

Experience Semana Santa up close

A native guide from Velez-Malaga offers to live it from the inside as an experience. In this link you will find his offer (this experience is only possible for a few days a year and is done in groups of maximum 8 people!

Semana Santa Tour


Another demonstration of the Veleños’ fervour for Semana Santa is the existence of a Holy Week museum in the city.

This museum is located in the church of Santa María La Mayor de la Encarnación. Admission is free and the museum is open all year round, from Tuesday to Sunday.
Velez Malaga Santa Maria de la Encarnacion Church
The holy Week museum is inside this church

Finally, while in Velez Malaga, be sure to visit a church painted entirely by the artist Evaristo Guerra. It is well worth a visit to see the Nuestra Virgen de Los Remedios church.

The poster for Semana Santa 2022 in Velez-Malaga

It was designed by local painter Antonio Valdés. The poster is dedicated to the Franciscan Brotherhood of the Santísimo Cristo del Amor en su Sagrado Descendimiento y María Santísima de la Caridad.
It represents the image of the Virgen de la Caridad. This is the fourth poster he has designed for Holy Week since 1991.

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