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Sicily Festivals & Events

Throughout the island and throughout the year there are numerous festivals which provide a good opportunity to see traditional costumes and local handicrafts, hear local music with singing and dancing, and taste local produce at typical Sicilian food stalls.

Sicilian festivals are usually religious in origin, but others celebrate annual and gastronomic events. Also many historic monuments host plays and concerts in the summer months (please ask locally for information).

Please click here for events at the Greek Theatre in Taormina

January

1st-6th January - New Year, Taormina
Puppet shows, folk-singing and concerts
6th January - Orthodox Epiphany, Piana degli Albanesi
Pocession with traditional costumes and oranges
Mid January - Festival of Sant'Antonio, Nicolosi

February

Early February - Festival of Sant'Agata, Catania
A variety of food stalls, events, fireworks and a procession
End February - Carnevale, throughout the island
3 day event with procession, fireworks and music

February/March

Late February / Early March - Almond blossom festival, Agrigento
A torchlit procession with traditional dancing and singing leading to the Valley of the Temples
February / March - Carnival of Acireale
One of the most beautiful and exciting carnivals on the island with a parade around the town centre

March

Mid March - L'Altaro di San Giuseppe (Festival of St Joseph), Salemi
Sculptures are made out of bread and decorate the town and altars in the churches

March/April

Pasqua (Easter) and Holy Week
Processions and traditional costumes
Good Friday - The Procession of the Mysteries, Trapani and other areas
Starting in the afternoon and continuing into the Saturday a procession of statues, called the Sacred Mysteries, are taken through the city
Easter Sunday - Madonna Vasa Vasa, Modica, Ragusa
Two parades along the streets with statues of the Virgin Mary and Christ
Easter Sunday - Diavolata (The Devils),  Adrano, Catania
Good and Evil are represented in this celebration to show how Good triumphs over Evil
Easter Sunday -  The U Ballu di Diavuli (Devil's Dance), Prizzi, Palermo
The masked devils (some frightening) run through the village until the Virgin Mary and Christ will impede them in the afternoon

April

23rd - San Giorgio (St George's Day), throughout the island
Processions in traditional costumes

May

Mid May - Pilgrimage of Athletic Souls, Trecastagni
Traditional pilgrimage with participants barefoot and topless or in costume with colourful carts running along the main road from Catania to Trecastagni
Third Week of May - Infiorata, Noto
Celebrated with floral mosaics to welcome the spring
Mid May - Beer Bubbles, Palermo
A 4 day beer festival with a wide variety of different craft beers to try
Late May - A Nivarata, Acireale
A Sicilian granita festival
Late May - Cantine Aperte
Tanslates as 'open cellars' and wine makers welcome the public for wine tasting and to learn about the wine making process
May / June - Greek Theatre Festival, Syracuse
3 traditional Greek comedies and tragedies performed over several weeks

June

Mid June - Inycon Wine Festival, Menfi
Wine tasting, exhibitions, workshops and an opportunity to taste Sicilian food
Mid June - Pesce a Mare, Aci Trezza
A symbolic fishing ceremony perforned at sea
Last week - RS:X European Open Championship, Mondello
Annual windsurfing competition
End June / Beginning July - Taormina Film Festival, Taormina
International Film Festival in Taormina at the Greek Theatre (please click here for events at the theatre

July

Mid July - Festival of St Rosalia, Palermo
Fireworks and celebrations of the city being saved from the plague
Mid July - Syracuse - Malta Boat Race, Syracuse
Annual event starting from Malta in even years and Syracuse in odd years
End July - Stragusto, various locations across the island
A Sicilian street food festival
End July / Early August - Ortigia Sound System, Ortigia
A 5 day music festival

August

Early August - Regatta, Ortigia
A boat race between the 5 traditional sections of the city around Ortigia island in Syracuse
Mid August - Il Palio dei Normanni, Piazza Armerina
Celebrating Roger I of Sicily taking the town in 11th century
15th - Ferrogosta, throughout the island
A procession with fireworks celebrated across the island
Late August - San Giovanni Battista (St John the Baptist), Ragusa
Celebrations in Ragusa
Late August - Procession of Madonna delle Luci, Cefalu
A boat procession in Cefalu harbour

September

Early September - Le Castellana di Caccamo (The Landlady of Caccamo), Caccamo
A medieval parade with some 500 characters representing the notaries of the town's history over 8 centuries
Beginning of September  - Pilgrimage of Monte Pellegino, Palermo
Pilgrimage in honour of St Rosalia
Mid September - Sherbeth Festival, Palermo
An ice cream festival on the streets of Palermo
End of September - International couscous festival, San Vito Lo Capo

November

Mid November - Festa di San Martino, Catania
Wine tasting, food and traditional sweets

December

13th December - Festival of St Lucy, Syracuse
A procession through the streets of Syracuse
25th - Christmas

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