The Pisan June, a spectacular festival of the Middle Ages

In Events on June 6, 2010 by lamiatoscanablog Tagged: , , , , ,

Every year in Pisa, the month of June is a historic journey back to the Middle Ages. Throughout June, the city celebrates  its ancient traditions with concerts and cultural events. The four main events are the sea of lights in honor of San Ranieri, the patron saint of the city, the historical regatta on the River Arno, the game of the bridge, and last but not least every four years, the historic regatta of the Maritime Republics, which is held each year alternately in Amalfi, Genoa, Venice or Pisa.

Around these four events many other initiatives, such as flea markets, theater performances, street fairs, concerts, exhibitions and festivals take place.

San Ranieri, who comes from the noble family Scacceri, was born in 1128 in Pisa. After his secular youth, he began with works of charity and penitence. Twice he made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem and then spent his remaining years in the monastery of San Vito in Pisa. But the patron saint of Pisa was not only a holy and mystic man, but also a man of his time, who lent his aid unreservedly to the worldly needs of his city. After his death in 1161 he was named patron saint of Pisa and the patron saint of travelers.

Each year on June 17th, Pisa honors its patron saint, San Ranieri. In the late afternoon at about 6 o’clock begins the display of the rudder of the patron saint, which is transported on a galleon of the Ancient Maritime Republics on the Arno. The celebration continues with a procession, during which the participants wear costumes from the fifteenth century. At about 7 o’clock the historic regatta will be held, where representatives of the four ancient maritime republics, Pisa, Genoa, Amalfi and Venice will participate. The winning team will be  awarded by the mayor with a medal.

During the whole day several boat trips along the Arno will be offered. At the two banks are set up stands, where visitors have the opportunity to taste the typical dishes and sweets of the city.

On the eve of June 17th the historic center of the city and the Arno river turn into a sea of lights. Days before this great event more than 70 000 candles are placed on the facades and the Leaning Tower, which are then lit up at dusk. At midnight a spectacular fireworks will take place on the Arno river.

A vacation in Pisa on the occasion of the Pisan June will remain in memory for lifetime.

… enjoying the beautiful scenery of Pisa

… the pleasure of taking breakfast on a panoramic terrace

… the pleasure of a cool refreshment in a swimming pool


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