The number 3 of Berbetaña Street, in the historic center of the town of Cangas de Morrazo, is filled every Christmas with thousands of curious people who come to the garage of this house to admire the nativity scene of Francisco Martínez Prieto. With more than twenty square meters, this crib continues the tradition of the Martinez family for more than half a century in the Galician town, famous for such an illustrious setting. Today we present the Bethlehem de Cangas, a very special nativity scene.


The Bethlehem of Cangas, a family tradition.

Francisco Martínez Prieto inherited the tradition of his father to install year after year a monumental crib that little by little was crossing the borders of the small town of Cangas del Morrazo. That first crib, in addition to the traditional birth, pretended to simulate the historic city of Nazareth. Little could Francisco Martínez father imagine about the evolution that later would have that timid outline of initial scenography.

Francisco Sr. died almost fifteen years ago. You can be proud of how your son has made his hobby a true art and how he shares it with those who want to visit the nativity scene, where you can still admire the original camels from those early assemblies in the living room of the house. "Making the nativity scene every year serves to unite the family more", Francisco Martínez has repeatedly stated to different media interested in this tradition.


Detail of the Bethlehem by Francisco Martínez. Photography: Facebook Belen de Cangas


The monumentality of the Bethlehem of Cangas.

Francisco Martínez has an inventory of figures for the nativity scene that amounts to more than 500 pieces, although each year he uses more than a hundred for the performances. The scenarios, which are also periodically updated, reuse natural elements such as stones, earth, moss, cork or wood.

The small board that once served as support for the first Nativity scene that the Martinez family set up in their home has been exceeded in size each year to the present, where a scenario of about twenty square meters gives free rein to imagination and dexterity of this Cangués nationalist.

The scenography, although renewed every Christmas, maintains the fundamental elements for several years: a town on the edge of a large lake -of two square meters and with a capacity for 300 liters of water- and with large mountains on the horizon, where the castle of Herod, the birth or a huge cave.


FMAS Automation, cutting-edge technology for the Belen de Cangas

One of the aspects that most attract attention in this crib by Francisco Martínez is the careful detail given to the sound and visual aspect, with spectacular effects perfected thanks to the controllers of FMAS Automation, which you can see in our online store.


Night lighting effects. Photography: Facebook Belén de Cangas.


Thanks to them, the Bethlehem of Cangas incorporates effects that go from the basic cycle of day, afternoon and night to the representation of a storm of thunder and lightning or the sound of animals like the roosters at dawn or the crickets and their nocturnal song. You can even see the smoke from the fires and the wind stirring the clothes hanging in the houses and you hear the sound of foam from the distant waves. This nativity scene only needs its figures to speak. Everything so that the viewer does not leave without renewing the spirit of Christmas.


If you are interested in visiting this nativity scene, you can do it every year during the month of December. You have to wait a while to enjoy it live! Of course, Francisco has collected on this website the photographs, press mentions, reports and the evolution of his latest productions. Are you going to stay without seeing it?


Fecha: 03 / 02 / 2016|Categories: Nativity scenes around the world|Tags: , , |


  1. Ramón Duarte Burró 24/02/2016 at 00:05 - Reply

    Good job !!! He pondered
    As also a great passion for the nativity scene from this Asunción, Capital of Paraguay. I would very much like to be able to contact Mr. Francisco and learn a lot from his experience and fine dedication.

    • Controllers 29/02/2016 at 12:01 - Reply

      Thanks for your comment, Ramón. Welcome to the blog, we hope you enjoy it as much as we did writing these notes ...

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