Don't think of Italy as only a summer destination. There are plenty of things to do and to see during the Italian spring, fall, and even winter. This series of articles provides ideas for your Italian vacation, describing regional spectacles, tourist attractions, and special events, at any time of year. Off-season Italian holidays have several advantages: You won't fight the crowds, hotels and other accommodations are easier and cheaper to find. Whatever time of year you go, every region has its own special festivals. Plan your spring Italian holidays now. Keep reading.
So you are thinking of visiting southern Italy in April, but youíre just not sure what to see and to do. Donít you despair; there are lots and lots of special spring events that simply arenít available in the good old summertime. Here are a few of them. Get rolling; April is almost upon us. We start our virtual tour in Campania on the coast of the Tyrhennian Sea and then head east to Apulia on the Adriatic sea coast. There are so many things to see and do in southern Italy in April that this is the first of two articles.
On April fifth the town of Montoro Superiore, Campania, home to about 9 thousand, hosts a traditional pilgrimage to the Sanctuary of the Crowned Virgin to commemorate the legend of a mad bull spared from slaughter due to the miraculous intervention of the Crowned Virgin. That very same day Napoli celebrates the Feast of Saint Vincent Ferreri with a mix of fried hot peppers and melons. Donít look for this delicacy all over Naples; it is only served in the Stella neighborhood. Spring...in Naples - Windows in Bloom is the city's annual event dedicated to creativity. Art, architecture, design and fashion groups perform at the Castel dell'Ovo, a Twelfth Century fortress that overlooks the Porto Santa Lucia in the Gulf of Naples.
April 23 is the feast of San Giorgio. In the costal town of Chieuti e Scalo, Apulia whose population is 2 thousand, an ox-cart race pits the townís five neighborhoods against one another. This race is so important to the locals that they start preparations in October of the preceding year. For safety reasons each cart is spotted by a horse and rider and then followed by three additional horsemen. The winner leads a parade to the town cathedral where the celebration lasts well into the evening. This festivity is bilingual; youíll hear Italian and Albanese, the local version of Albanian. The city of Locorotondo, population about 14 thousand, celebrates San Giorgio with sports and gastronomical events for two days starting on April 22. I suggest trying the dry or sparkling white wines that carry the townís name. The town of Acquaviva delle Fonti, population 20 thousand, hosts the Marathon of the Mediterranean on the fourth Saturday of April.
Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten books on computers and the Internet, but to be honest, he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Visit his website www.travelitalytravel.com devoted to Italian travel with an accent on fine Italian wine and food. Visit his central wine website www.theworldwidewine.com with weekly reviews of $10 wine and columns devoted to various aspects of wine including wine and food, humor, trivia, organic and kosher wine and lots more.
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April events, spectacles, and tourist attractions in Southern Italy