You never need any excuse to visit Florence, but if you're looking for one anyway, then there are luckily plenty of opportunities to attend some incredible annual events. Our local editor has selected their favourites below.
Epiphany, may not be the most noteworthy holiday of the year where you’re from, but it’s pretty huge in Italy! The Cavalcade of the Three Magi is a parade held in celebration of the biblical wise men who,according to the gospel, came bearing gifts to the baby Jesus. If you’re lucky enough to be in town on January 6th, you can expect to catch a glimpse of Renaissance costumes and men on horseback. The parade begins at the Palazzo Pitti and ends at Piazza del Duomo.
Festa di Anna Maria Medici
On the 18th of February the city gathers to remember the last of its historic Medici patrons. Anna Maria died in 1743 in an age when costume parties and masquerades where all the rage. As such a costume parade is organized each year between the town hall and her resting place at the Cappelle Medicee.
Renaissance flair is always in the air in Florence. This is especially true at Carnival when the whole city is invited to dress up and participate in the city’s grand parade. Naturally the parade takes place on Fat Tuesday and besides joyous floats and an enormous dragon puppet, the parade comes with a message of peace and understanding through its celebration of the cultural diversity of ethnic communities living side by side in Florence. Get your mask here.
Until the 18th century Florentines celebrated Capodanno (New Year) on the feast day of the Annunciation, and not the 1st of January. Traditional costumes, music and foods are still enjoyed on the 25th of March. Head to Piazza della Santissima Annunziata to celebrate with crowds of locals eager to cheer in the spring.
Florence’s premier performing arts festival offers a little something for everyone with theater, jazz, opera, and classical music performances held between late April and June every year. It’s a wonderful time to attend a performance at Florence’s futuristic opera house.
Ever heard of calcio storico? It’s an ancient form of football that is played every June 24th in the grand Piazza di Santa Croce in honor of Saint John the Baptist, Florence’s patron saint and protector.
A mix of musical genres, good vibes, and food creations converge every July in this people pleasing urban culture festival. The festival showcases handmade clothes and crafts alongside concerts and DJ sets.
The Estate Fiesolana is one of Italy’s oldest running modern festivals. Their classy cultural program presents Jazz, Classical, and Rock music events, alongside cinema, theater and much more. While the festival spans back many decades, its venue spans back many centuries! Indeed the festival held between July and August makes wonderful use of Fiesole’s Roman Theater by respecting its original function as a hotspot for entertainment.