One of the best times to visit Cornwall is when the region is thriving with the excitement of a festival and, during the winter months, a highlight has to be the Feast of Imbolc.
Also known as the Festival of Lights, the Feast of Imbolc is a great opportunity to see Irish Celtic culture on display in the area.
It is the festival that celebrates the end of winter and the coming of spring and has been celebrated for hundreds of years. Visitors taking a holiday to the region should aim to rent their Cornish cottage for around February 2nd, as this is when the festival takes place.
Imbolc is one of the four main festivals on the Irish calendar, it is always celebrated each year at the start of February as it is an important date on the calendar – half way between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox.
Holidaymakers spending time in Cornwall during the Feast of Imbolc should expect to see lots of candles and lights. Most villages and towns will celebrate the festival, with bigger celebrations expected in the more populated areas.
The Fest of Imbolc is celebrated around the UK, in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. It is associated with the goddess Brigid and the event is also referred to as St Brigid’s Day.
Communities come together to appreciate the early signs of Spring when celebrating the festival.
This is usually done by lighting bonfires and candles and in Cornwall some of these festivities can be really spectacular. Dancing around bonfires is common, as is holding small ceremonies with lit torches, which are popular to try and ward off bad omens while welcoming the new season.
Groundhog Day is a famous festival that is associated with the Feast of Imbolc and traditionally it was a sign of the weather if a hedgehog had a shadow or not.
Without one meant that good weather and Spring were on their way, but with a shadow meant that winter was set to continue. Throughout the year Cornwall is a fantastic place to visit and when a festival is taking place it has even more charm.
Some popular events throughout the year include May Day, St Piran’s Day on March, 5th, where people celebrate the Cornish patron saint, and Camborne Trevithick Day on the last Saturday in April.