What’s on in San Sebastián: Olatu Talka Cultural Festival

What’s on in San Sebastián: Olatu Talka Cultural Festival


If there’s one thing you’re almost always guaranteed to find in San Sebastián, it’s a cultural festival happening somewhere. Throughout the year, the city finds numerous ways to honour its culture and heritage, and one of the most well-known of these events is Olatu Talka. This festival is linked to the DSS2016 project, which is celebrating San Sebastián as the European Capital of Culture for 2016. The first Olatu Talka was celebrated in 2010, in honour of the city’s candidacy as a Capital of Culture. Today, the festival continues to be about local culture and values, and features cultural participation by all city residents.

art sculpture near the water in san sebastian

Olatu Talka is a festival that culturally shakes up the city for one full weekend, offering a platform for locals to try new ways of collaborating together, through the use of public spaces and cultural celebrations. It also positions professional artist alongside amateur artists, giving everyone an opportunity to be a part of the event. Now in its sixth year, the festival has become incredibly successful, featuring new ways of honouring local art and creativity through its cultural program.

But by far the most interesting aspect of the festival is that the program is created by and for the citizens — locals submit proposals for the schedule and activities, which is one of the reasons why participating in Olatu Talka has such a special significance; it will always be what local citizens want it to be.

view of a street at dusk in san sebastian

The events and cultural activities are open to all ages and can be found throughout different neighbourhoods of San Sebastián. You’ll find concerts, markets, exhibitions, traditional dances, sports events, and more. You can view a complete overview of the festival on the Olatu Talka website.

If you’re in San Sebastián during Olatu Talka, come join the locals and enjoy this unique experience!

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