Florence Festivals Tuscany Italy - An Annual Calendar
There are many Florence festivals in Tuscany, Italy that happen throughout the year and there is nothing worse than finding that you have just missed a major festival in a city that you are visiting by a few days.
If you are planning on visiting Florence then that won't happen to you as we have many of the festivals that are celebrated in Florence month by month.
Major Festivals in Florence Tuscany Italy
There are 2 major festivals in Italy held every year and they couldn't be more different. There is a very sedate, cultured musical festival and then there is a brutal football match that borders on something you could have witnessed thousands of years ago sitting in a Roman amphitheatre during the time of the gladiators.
1) Maggio Musicale
The first one is the cultural musical festival known as the Maggio Muscicale that takes place from mid-May to late June.
2) Gioco di Calcio Storico
The second is the brutal yet fascinating football game from the Middle Ages called the Gioco di Calcio Storico that takes place in last week of June where 4 teams, each coming from the four quarters of the city dress up in medieval costume to take on each other. There seem to be no rules and looks more like a gladiator sport than any soccer or football game you are ever likely to see. The Gioco di Calcio Storico takes place in the Piazza Signoria.
Because there are 4 teams participating the second match usually takes place 4 days after the first match.
There are rules for the Cacio Storico although sometimes it is hard to tell!
The Gioco di Calcio Storico coincides with the Festa di San Giovanni (Feast of John the Baptist) which starts on the 24th June with a spectacular fireworks display that takes place in the Piazzale Michelangelo over the Arno River.
Other festivals in Florence Tuscany Italy:
Florence Festivals for February:
For 9 days in mid-February there is the chocolate festival. Think beyond your normal chocolates. This display will have you intrigued as you find chocolate mice, hammers, shoes, puppies, frogs, you name it, it will be there.
The festival takes place in one of the oldest squares in Florence that has been built on the site of an old Roman amphitheater, the Piazza della Republica.
Everything you see here is made from chocolate at the Chocolate Festival
Florence Festivals for March:
In March Italian and International high fashion collections are shown in the Sala Bianca of the Pitti Palace.
Florence Festivals for April:
At Easter there are fireworks in the Piazza del Duomo on Easter Sunday, for the Scoppio del Carro. A cart laden with flowers and fireworks is drawn by 3 pairs of white oxen - traditionally from a dairy farm in the Cascine to the Duomo.
At midday mass, during the Gloria, a firework in the shape of a dove (colambino) is lit on the stone of the Holy Sepulchre said to have been brought to Florence by Pazzo de' Pazzi in 1099. The lit dove descends from the high altar the length of the nave along a wire attached to the cart outside.
The fireworks of the Scoppio del Carro
The cart is then taken by the oxen to Via del Proconsolo and the remainder of the fireworks are let off at the Canto de' Pazzi.
Thousands of people watch the Scoppio del Carro from the piazza with interest because depending on how the dove descends whether with regularity or irregularity will determine how good or bad that year's harvest will be respectively.
From April through to May there is a craft display at the Fortezza del Basso.
From April through to June there is a flower display in Piazza Signoria and the Uffizi.
Florence Festivals for May:
In May there is an Iris show. Irises are one of my favorite flowers, and the displays in the Piazzale Michelangelo are just wonderful with carpets of Irises which is
the symbolic flower of Florence.
Mid May - Artigianato e Palazzo. This is the Palazzo Corsini Arts & Crafts Fair. Artisans from around Italy come to Florence for this craft fair that is held over a weekend. It takes place in the Palazzo Corsini on Via della Scala.
On the 23rd of May there is the Fiorita per Savonarola when the spot where he was burned at the stake is strewn with flowers.
In late May on a Saturday there is the Mille Miglia which is the vintage car race that goes from Florence to Brescia in Northern Italy. The vintage cars make their way from Porta Romana across the Ponte Santa Trinita to Piazza della Signoria.
A contestant of the Mille Miglia Vintage Car Race
Florence Festivals for June:
On the 1st Sunday in June is the Festa dello Statuto with a parade in the Cascine and an illumination of the Palazzo Vecchio after dark.
Florence Festivals for August:
On August 15 to celebrate Assumption Day there is the Festa del Grillo in the Cascine Park where caged crickets can be bought. People usually go to the park before day break to have breakfast in the park and amuse themselves for most of the day. In the old quarter inhabitants in each street spend the day celebrating the day of their
patron saint with music and fireworks.
Florence Festivals for September:
In early September, around the 7th, there is a torch lit procession for the Festa Della Rificolone (Festival of Lanterns). On the eve of the Nativity of the Virgins children run through the streets carrying colored paper lanterns. The following evening Via dei Servi is lined with sweet stalls and the children take part in a procession that starts at the Duomo and proceeds to SS Annunziata.
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