First week in December – Not a good weekend to pop across the border!

Le Perthus frontiere border
French-Spanish border at Le Perthus

The official opening of the majority of ski resorts in the PO usually takes place around the first weekend of December, depending of course on the snow forecast. If you’re thinking of going shopping in Spain, bear in mind  two of its festival days, “Le Saint Nicolas” and the “’Immaculée Conception”, both of which are bank holidays in Spain. Apart from in the ski resorts, most shops and offices will be closed.

Le Saint Nicolas – 6th December

saint nicholas

St. Nicholas of Myra
Turkey, was born in 271 AD and died around December, 342 or 343 AD. He was known for his kindness, generosity, and secret gift- giving.

He was a shy man, and when he died, all sorts of stories were told of the wonderful things he had done during his life, a perfect role model for the future Santa Claus!

He is also the patron saint of judges, murderers, pawnbrokers, thieves, merchants, paupers, scholars, sailors, bakers, travellers, maidens and poor children!! A heavy workload for even the most saintly saint.

l’Immaculée Conception – 8th December


The Immaculate Conception was established as a Catholic feast day in 1476 by Pope Sixtus IV.

Over that weekend, the Spanish often make a long weekend of it – and the ski season gets off to a festive beginning.



Leave a Comment