Christmas in Maremma: all the festivals you can't miss

Christmas in Maremma: all the festivals you can't miss

The zones of Chianti and Maremma are rich in history, tradition, and culture. It shouldn’t be surprising that all year long (and in particular from November to March), events, Christmas festivals and folklore traditions are celebrated in practically every town and village, enticing and delighting locals and visitors alike.

It is certainly a good reason to visit this magical and delicious wine region, even in the winter!

The festivals in Massa Marittima and Pitigliano

In Massa Marittima, the next-to-last month of the year is called Novembre Grosso or “Fat November.” This is, in fact, the name of a festival that promotes culture, art, and the environment of the surrounding Metallifere Hills.

There will be guided visits, conferences, workshops, tastings, concerts, and multiple spectacles. In mid-November in Pitigliano, the Novello wine and freshly-pressed olive oil festival is held, called “Santi Vinai”, a food stand will be set up in the town with tastings, an olive oil market, nature outings, and live music.

The Sagra delle Frattaglie in Greve in Chianti

For almost a quarter of a century in Strada, in Greve in Chianti, the “Sagra delle Frattaglie” has been held during the last two weekends of November. Taste traditional peasant recipes based on the frattaglie, such as tripe alla fiorentina, lampredotto, inzimino, stufato core e paracore, poppa, and fried onions with tripe.

And of course, other foods will be served as well, such as wood-fired pizza and grilled meat. Obviously, everything will be paired with some of the best selected wines of the territory.

Christmas markets in Chianti

Every year in San Casciano dei Bagni during the period of the Immaculate Conception, on December 8th, theChristmas Markets” are held: four days dedicated to local artisans. It’s the perfect opportunity to do some gift shopping for Christmas.

Other than objects and goods, you will see seasonal desserts, beauty products, clothes, and specialties of the Val d’Orcia. Similar markets are held in the municipalities of Strada, Greve in Chianti, and Tavarnelle during the same period.

The nativity in Castelfiorentino

Every year in the municipality of Castelfiorentino, theNativity Street” is held, an event that lasts from the Immaculate Conception until Epiphany on January 6. Visitors may enjoy the exhibits of artistic and hand-crafted nativity scenes made by the town’s residents and displayed on windowsills, in churches, in the cells of the ex-prison, in storefront shops, and out in the open along a beautiful route that guides visitors through the streets and alleyways of the upper village.

The nativities in Montorsaio

A similar event is held in the tiny village of Montorsaio (district of Campagnatico), where many different nativity scenes are set up from December 8 until January 6, enough so that it has been called the “Village of Nativities”.

A particular display to see is in the main square, where terracotta statues have been hand-crafted to bear the faces of townspeople; another nice display can be found in the Church of the Company of Santa Croce, with moving statues.

The Christmas mini-marathon in Orbetello

During the second week in December in Orbetello, the “Mini-marathon of Christmas” is organized. This 10-km race runs along the trail of the Laguna di Orbetello. And as in all of Italy, the live Nativity scenes are very popular. One of the most beautiful is held in the ancient village of Porto Ercole.

The Christmas village in Manciano

From the Immaculate Conception almost up until Christmas Eve, Manciano becomes a Christmas Village. Local Maremma farmers set up a market, international artists perform, and there are magic shows, Christmas games, children’s face-painting, several nativity scenes, art workshops, “Santa’s post office,” and resting points for tourists.

And in the castle of Manciano on December 24 and 26, the area will be set up for children’s fun and games with Santa’s House, a magical route with an elf’s workshop, enchanted forest, Santa’s rooms and workshop, 3D video shows, light plays, and a Christmas train driven by elves.

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