Municipalities and Villages in Sobrarbe
San Juan de Plan
Web of Valle de Chistau District: www.elvalledechistau.com
o Inhabitants: 150
o Height above sea level: 1122m
o Name of its inhabitants: sanjuanero
o Distance from Huesca: 152km
o Local Holidays: 24th June and 25th August
o Monuments: Ethnologic Museum and Textile Crafts Museum, as well as important examples of traditional architecture in the area and its very well known Carnivals.
The built-up area is divided into two neighbourhoods: the high one, known in vernacular as Cabo Lugá and the low one, known as Suel Lugá. Houses are known by the names of the original families. Casa Guillén, after which the square is named, is between two squares, and behind it, we can find Casa Brune. The first settlement in the village took place in Ligüés, but the legend tells that, because of the snakes, the settlement should be moved.
In the town hall, we find the village coat of arms, dated 1927. In the square, we find the spring and the watering trough, dated 1897.
The male traditional costume consists in underpants, wide belt, round-collar white shirt, a vest and a headscarf tied on the left side.
Women dress skirt over the petticoat, an apron, a vest with a belt, a merino shawl and a headscarf tied from the nape of the neck to the forehead. A bow hanging from the apron and another hanging at the back, of bright colours. Sunday shoes for going to the ball, and wool stocking and cowhide shoes for everyday, handmade by women.
Some stories about smugglers and the legend of "The Good Sin" have this village as its setting. We can find a bridge one kilometre up the river, 49m high, which was used to punish sinners, hurling them down the cliff, in former times.
Minor festivity is held on 24th June, St. John the Baptist. Major festivity is devoted to St. Menas. This festivity is held in the hermitage named after the Saint, three-hour walk away from the village, on the mount also named after the saint. Every year, there is a procession to St. Menas hermitage.
La Falleta is held on St. John's midsummer night, when everyone gathers around the bonfire. It is a high bonfire, in order to be seen from other valleys. When the night comes, everyone comes into the street with torches. The first one arriving at the cemetery is awarded. Next morning, a Mass is celebrated and everyone goes in procession after some lifelike wood sculptures of the saint, decorated with lace edgings, ribbons and bows, singing to St. John. Carnival is also held, being a festival with deep roots in this valley.
Traditional dances are still performed as in past times, known as "La polca bibí", "La polca piqué", "La Canastera", "Vals de las flores", "El Cipután", "La pesadilla", "El cascabillo", "El trespunteau" and "El píntimele". Some of them have a French influence. "La rosca" is danced in St. Cosme's Hermitage, on a flagstone with the dimensions of a square. Formerly, the bagpiper from Senés came for the dances, but now Senés is an abandoned village.
The Romanesque church is devoted to St. John the Baptist.