Every year when the festival takes place the city of Girona, the Barri Vell or ‘Old Neighborhood’ where the festival takes place, transforms into a flower-lover’s paradise as the streets are filled with bursts of color and scent in what is a magnificent floral spectacle.
This unique floral exhibition becomes one with the language of flowers. The streets burst with imaginative and original creations arranged by the hundreds of participants that transform the city each year.
Monuments, historical houses, courtyards, streets, gardens and natural landscapes are adorned with flowers and plants of all kinds, as well as artistic creations which transform the city into a tribute to the graceful beauty of nature.
The festival was first held in the municipal theater in 1954, when it was organized by women from the female section of the local Falange Española Tradicionalista (the sole legal political party under Franco). In the early 1980s the exhibition moved to Santo Domingo, where three editions were held until 1985 when the city council gave the building to the University of Girona, resulting in the need to cancel the festival the following year for lack of a suitable venue.
The 1987 edition marked a turning point as the exhibition opened in the old town, and was designed for the first time as a route through the squares and streets of the old city. The courtyards and gardens of the noble houses, most of which were privately owned and closed to the public throughout the rest of the year, opened their doors and became one of the main attractions of the tour.
Throughout the years, the Girona flower festival has involved the participation of a range of designers artists, associations and organizations of all sizes. Today, it remains one the city’s most highly anticipated events of the year, and hundreds of visitors flock to the city in May for this unique opportunity to see the city of Girona in full bloom.