Independence Day commemorates Costa Rica’s independence from Spanish rule in 1821. This national holiday is marked by students in schools across the country hoisting the national flag, completing parades and putting on performances for the community. Parades also take place all across Costa Rica the night of the 14th, and at exactly 6:00 p.m. the entire nation joins in the national anthem. The Independence Torch, which is another symbol of Costa Rica’s liberation from Spain, is carried by thousands of students from Guatemala to Costa Rica’s southern region. In Cartago, the former capital city of Costa Rica, there is a traditional celebration that takes place.