In the Maremma, the entire year is filled with a succession of events linked to folklore, religious traditions, gastronomy or cultural happenings. Travelplan offers a selection of the most singular and best known events.
Torciata di San Giuseppe - Pitigliano 19 March.
A traditional nighttime procession by torchlight dedicated to San Giuseppe that culminates in an impressive "Rite of Fire." The entire community gathers in the town's central piazza around the great bonfire of the "invernacciu" in which a puppet (winter) is burned and the new season is greeted with the wish that it will bring well being and abundance.
Il Balestro del Girifalco - Massa Marittima, two times a year: around 20 May and the second Sunday of August.
This medieval spectacle includes the participation of 8 crossbowmen from each of the three districts into which the city is divided: the archer who comes closest to the center of the target wins a golden arrow and the district receives a silk flag painted by an artist. Each time, the piazza is filled with thousands of residents and tourists who come to watch the historic procession of over 150 persons in medieval costumes that begins the contest.
Capalbio Cinema - International Short Film Festival Capalbio, at the beginning of July.
This is one of the most important events in the short film industry. The festival specializes in short films (a maximum length of 15 minutes) and presents of selection of the best international production. An international jury composed of directors, actors, producers and critics bestows an award for the best film, best director, best photography, etc.
Toscana Fotofestival - Massa Marittima, in July and August.
A photographic review consisting of exhibitions of the best masters, meeting-debates on themes connected to photography, projections and workshops.
Rodeo della Rosa - Alberese, 15 August.
The main event for the Maremma's cowboys. They meet in Alberese every 15 August to test themselves in a unique tournament. Divided into two teams - Rosa Gialla and Rosa Rossa (the Yellow and Red Roses) - the herdsmen challenge each other to a contest of riding ability. Two horsemen of opposite colors complete, saddled on their horses, and attempt to snatch the band with the other team's colors. In a rapid succession of escapes and body to body fighting, the contest continues until all the contestants have met. The team that manages to conquer the most enemy "roses" wins.
Palio Marinaro dell’Argentario - Porto S. Stefano, 15 August.
It is a regatta of 4 boats, each with 4 oarsmen and a tiller, who represent the city's four neighborhoods. The contest's origins are very ancient: legend has it that it represents a Saracen felucca chasing a boatload of local fishermen, who escape because of their rowing prowess.
Le Carriere del 19 - Scarlino, 19 August.
This popular festival recalls a miracle that occurred in this village in 1855 when a cholera epidemic suddenly stopped. The resident of the three neighborhoods of Scarlino challenge each other to a contest that takes place from 9:00 in the morning until midnight. The events includes a historic procession, a competition between the archers of the three districts and a race through the town. The night before the nineteenth, the village is decorated with wood cathedrals, papier-mâché castles, fountains and everything else until it becomes unrecognizable to its own residents. Towards evening, every village street becomes a theater with local actors playing a scene assigned by the organizing committee.
Photos courtesy of: Agenzia Turismo della Maremma & Municipality of Grosseto