Events and festivals in Italy

Celebrate the seasons in Italy this year

The Vittoriano, Rome

Italy may be filled with dozens of diverse regions, but as a country it knows how to celebrate! With festivals ranging from beautiful religious ceremonies to colourful food markets, and from historical reenactments to celebrations of chocolate, there's something to suit every interest. It doesn't matter when you choose to travel, or where you decide to go - throughout the year, there are hundreds of exciting Italian events to choose from.

May is a great time for celebrating spring, admiring flowers and tasting wine, whilst June and July are particularly good months to find local music and food festivals. Moving into August, Italians celebrate at the seaside and mountains whilst on holiday, but come September, they've returned to the city to make the most of summer before it ends. By October, Italy's sagre - or food festivals - are brimming with local truffles and mushrooms.

Of course, while you'll find plenty of small festivals throughout the year, the larger and more famous celebrations draw thousands of tourists from all over the world. Hotels are expensive, if you can find any with vacancies, and are often booked months in advance. With such stresses involved, why not consider holiday rentals in Italy this year instead? Not only are you offered more space and privacy - and the chance to make great savings in the process - but the chance to experience real Italian life, during every day of your stay.


Top events and festivals in Italy


Calendimaggio - When? May. Where? Assisi Calendimaggio - When? May. Where? Assisi

Calendimaggio takes place in the beautiful town of Assisi, in Italy's 'green heart' Umbria. Its origins lie in bitter feuds between two medieval families, the Nepis and Fiumi, who resided in the 'Parte di Sopra' and 'Parte di Sotto' - or upper and lower parts of town - in the 14th century. Whilst their fights went on unchecked for over 200 years, hatred has today given way to a bit of harmless competition, in which two rival groups take part in a range of spectacular challenges. With competitions including theatre, singing, dancing, archery, crossbow firing, marching and flag-waving, it's certainly one of Umbria's most elaborate!

View Assisi Villas



Sagra di San Giovanni - When? June. Where? Lake Como Sagra di San Giovanni - When? June. Where? Lake Como

Lake Como, or Lago di Como, is Italy's deepest lake, and certainly its most beautiful during the Sagra di San Giovanni. While it boasts dozens of magnificent hiking paths, and offers excellent sailing and water activities year-round, it's a spectacular sight to behold in June. The oldest historic event on Lake Como, the revellers celebrate San Giovanni by sending out hundreds of tiny, twinkling lamps to float on the water in the evening, before holding an enormous fireworks display. The next morning, there's also a large parade of elaborately decorated boats, covered in flags and flowers, with performers and dancers on board.

View Lake Como Villas



Il Palio de Siena - When? July & August. Where? Siena Il Palio de Siena - When? July & August. Where? Siena

Il Palio di Siena is possibly one of Italy's most famous events, a fast and furious bareback-horse race which takes place around Siena's central square, Piazza del Campo. Occurring twice, once in July and again in August, it's preceded by a spectacular procession, which features hundreds of the city's revellers in beautiful medieval costume. In both races, 10 of the city's 17 contrade, or districts, compete in the race, which sees onlookers shouting and singing for their favoured team. The winner is awarded with the prestigious silk palio, a flag, before the whole city is engulfed in an evening of music, celebration and song!

View Siena Villas



Madonna degli Ammalati - When? September. Where? Sicily Madonna degli Ammalati - When? September. Where? Sicily

Festival of the Madonna of the Sick takes place annually in the Sicilian town of Misterbianco, usually during the first weekend of September. A five day celebration, it honours the Madonna for saving her church from devastation during Mount Etna's catastrophic eruption in 1669. The church's enormous bell is carried around the town on Thursday evening, before being returned to its resting place at the Sanctuary at sunrise. Saturday is a colourful day of celebration, while on Sunday, 'La Cantata' sees hundreds of locals singing hymns and dancing. On Monday, a lively procession precedes a final and poignant display, during which fireworks illuminate the sky on top of the town's hill.

View Sicily Accommodation



Regatta Storica - When? September. Where? Venice Regatta Storica - When? September. Where? Venice

Water and gondolas usually come to mind when considering a holiday in Venice, so it's no surprise that the city's most famous event is a boat race on the Grand Canal. It begins with a beautiful historical procession - consisting of decorated, carved boats and people dressed in medieval costumes - which commemorates the welcome of Caterina Cornaro, the wife of the King of Cyprus who renounced her throne for Venice in 1489. Following the parade, the Regatta Storica consists of four races - for children, women, men and champions - which sees onlookers chanting and shouting for their favoured team.

View Venice Villas


Eurochocolate - When? October. Where? Perugia

Eurochocolate is, unsurprisingly, an enormous celebration of chocolate! An annual event which takes place in Perugia - famous for delicious Perugina Baci chocolates - it's one of the largest of its kind in Europe. It draws around one million people every year, lasts for a rather indulgent nine days, and sees the city's many squares come alive with sweet-toothed tourists. There are hundreds of different snacks on offer, including chocolate-covered foods, chocolate liqueurs, chocolate bricks and chocolate drinks, as well as a huge variety of chocolate-related activities: from art displays to tastings, and from sculpting to spa treatments, it's a truly unmissable event for the chocoholics amongst you!


Italy Holiday Homes

LAKE ISEO - Charming country house waterfront

'La Stalletta' is a chalet with 3 apartments. Each one has private and independent entrance and terrace. It deals with a typical rural residence on three floors recently renovated attainable only on foot or by boat, docking to the private wharf ...

LAST MINUTE : from NOV. 06 to DEC. 10 2014-€ 75,00 per night ALL INCLUDED!!

Our apartment is superbly located: - 15 min. walk from the Colosseum/Roman Forum; - 15 min. walk from main Termini Railway Station; - 15 min. walk from the two Basilicas of S. Giovanni and S. M. Maggiore. It is a comfortable FIRST floor flat w...

Charming Apartment With A Large Terrace And Stunning Sea View

'Sa Casitta' is located in Cala Lupo, equally distant from the town of Stintino and the worldwide famous Pelosa beach, both reachable either on foot (approx 20 minutes) or via shuttle bus. The apartment enjoys a breathtaking view on the Asinara g...

Lovely Apartment With Balcony By Lake Iseo Near Franciacorta, The Wine Area.

The apartment is just a few meters from the beautiful Lake Iseo. It 's located in Clusane, a short walk from Iseo, the town most important and characteristic of the lake. A Iseo you can find every type of service, from the beaches where you can su...

Elegant 18th century villa, large pool and garden, close to Siena, Chianti area

Splendid 18th century mansion with typical Sienese architecture. It is situated next to the historical village of Basciano. The house position is ideal because one reaches the Chianti region in a few minutes or can enjoy the culture and convenienc...
italyFrance Valle d'Aosta Piedmont Lombardia Lombardy Emilia Romagna Switzerland Trentino Alto Adige Austria Veneto-Venice Friuli Venezia Giulia Slovenia Slovenia Croatia Tuscany Marche Umbria Lazio Sardinia Abruzzo Molise Puglia Campania Basilicata Calabria Sicily Europe Stati Uniti World


Search for holiday rentals
Search for holiday ideas

Special offers and late deals

Join Our Newsletter

Get the latest updates in your email

Related Articles

Other Categories

Popular Articles