Jerez de los Caballeros. Come and Discover
Jerez de los Caballeros, a Templar city in the southwest of Extremadura, lights up every Christmas with its traditional Ruta de Belenes (Nativity Scenes Route), turning some of its squares and most beautiful sites into endearing postcards that evoke the spirit of this celebration together with the aromas and tastes.
Associations, groups, brotherhoods and public and particular establishments, join this initiative promoted by the City Council and the Tourist Office in order to involve the physiognomy of this city, an Artistic and Monumental Historic Site, in a magical and special atmosphere and enhance its great tourist attraction.
As part of this route, focus must be brought to the Belén Viviente (live performance of the Nativity Scene) of the district of La Bazana and the biblical and monumental Nativity Scene of Santa Ángela de la Cruz which is the largest of its type in the world. Furthermore, it has been recently incorporated in the Nativity Scene of fofuchas of the district of Valuengo.
LIVE PERFORMANCE OF THE NATIVITY SCENE OF LA BAZANA
The live performance of the Nativity Scene of La Bazana, organized by the Cultural Association ‘El Labrador’ of this district, is represented every year around Christmas. It is an intimate and inescapable event in the calendar of these holidays, in which about 300 neighbors participate, recreating traditional images of rural life of the ancient times, around the birth of Jesus. Its representation takes place in a natural setting of about 7,000 square meters in which are integrated buildings that are already part of the landscape of this beautiful district of Jerez de los Caballeros, located along the banks of the Ardila River.
For almost two decades, the neighbors of La Bazana have joined together to recreate the birth of Jesus in a representation that turns this town into an ethnographic museum in which tools, trades and images of the traditional life of Extremadura are shown.
The visitor can contemplate a wide repertoire of traditional tools and jobs (merchants, shepherds, a vegetable garden, small shacks , a bread oven, spinners, potters, carpenters, blacksmiths, women making cheese in an artisan way…) which, with the passage of time have been disappearing. All this together with important moments of the birth of Jesus such as: the entrance of Mary and Joseph in the city of Bethlehem, the scene of the annunciation of the angels to the shepherds, the castle of King Herod together with the Three Wise Men who were guided by the Star of the East, put the finishing touch to this representation.
THE BIBLICAL NATIVITY SCENE OF SANTA ANGELA DE LA CRUZ
The biblical and monumental Nativity Scene of Santa Ángela de la Cruz, the largest of its type in the world with more than 25,000 pieces, is a must-see representation in the context of this Nativity Scene Route. Located in the Plaza de Santiago, near the center of Jerez de los Caballeros, it occupies an area of 450 m2 with figures of up to 21 centimeters. It
offers a geographical tour of the locations where the events of this era took place and narrates, in a visual way, from the Annunciation to Mary to life in Egypt.
This Bethlehem is the result of the passion for the nativity scene that Doña Remedios Bartolomé Ramos transmitted to her son Manuel Delgado Bartolomé in the 90s, who a lot of effort, work and economic investment, has been able to shape and transmit it to its promoters María Eugenia Carrasco and Juan Izaguirre. Since 2011, she has been supported by the City Council of Jerez de los Caballeros, the regional board of Extremadura and the Council of Badajoz along with the work and enthusiasm of the group of people who are part of the Association which bears its name.
Full of details, it takes the visitor back to the time when Jesus was born. The scenes that are part of the route are various: the Annunciation to Mary, the Annunciation to Joseph, the edict of Residency Registration and the betrothal of Mary and Joseph, the Visiting to
St. Elizabeth, Jesus´Birth, the Adoration of the Shepherds and the Three Wise Men , the Edict of the Slaughter of the Innocents, the Dream of St. Joseph and the Escape to Egypt and the resistance towards the desert until they reached safety in Egypt, where they lived until the death of Herod. Countless constructions and elements faithfully recreate the places of this narration: the caravan crossing the desert, the Temple in Petra, the Bedouin camps, the Valley of the Kings, the Palace of Luxor, the wharf on the Nile with its galleon filled with provisions and goods… all hand-crafted. Some pieces are very special, such as the goldfinches and the tiny flowers of the almond tree of the Annunciation to Mary, made by Manuel Delgado and Isabel Granado Sánchez.
NATIVITY SCENE OF FOFUCHAS IN THE DISTRICT OF VALUENGO
Since 2020, the neighbors of the Jerez district called Valuengo, recreate the birth of Jesus with a ‘Bethlehem of fofuchas’ composed of figures and typical and traditional objects. Located in front of the Church of San Juan Bautista of this town, it shows different scenes of rural life in this area of southwestern Extremadura, with striking and sympathetic details of great realism.