WHERE: Nola, Italy
WHEN: 23 June 2019
Not far from the splendid Naples, in the small town of Nola, there is a festival of great charm and tradition, in honor of San Paolino, protector of the city. A real celebration of the folk, folk and religious tradition of the whole Southern Italy!
It is said that in the 410 AD, the then bishop Paolino, gave his possessions, and himself, to the Visigoths, in exchange for the liberation of the nolanis, made slaves. When the bishop returned to Nola in the 431, by ship, after years of imprisonment, he was welcomed by the inhabitants with flowers (lilies) and escorted to the bishop’s palace.
From here, the birth of the Feast of the Gigli. An event that occurs every year, Sunday 22 June or the first Sunday, following this date. The 2013 has marked its consecration, with the inclusion of the party in the Oral and Intangible Heritage of UNESCO humanity.
The lilies are wooden structures of exquisite workmanship, made by local master craftsmen, with decorations in stucco or other materials, according to religious, historical or topical themes.
Each one takes its name from one of the ancient guilds of arts and crafts: Ortolano; Salumiere; innkeeper; Baker; Beccaio; Shoemaker; Blacksmith; Tailor.
The 8 obelisks, have the base of a cube, about 3 meters per side, and a height of 25 meters. Individuals, called cradars, are lifted and handled by 128. the whole of the latter constitutes the so-called “paranza”.
In total Xnumx lilies are, to which is added a similar structure, but lower: the boat; it is an historical reference to the boat with which San Paolino returned to Nola.
As mentioned, it is an ancient and very important festival, so much so that it requires preparations for a whole year.
HOW TO GET
Nola is located just over 30 km from Naples. From Naples Capodichino International Airport, with the ALIBUS bus you arrive at the Central Railway Station. From the latter, with the Circumvesuviana-EAV trains, LINEA NAPOLI-BAIANO you reach Nola in about 45 ‘. The ticket, called TIC NA3, costs 3,20 € one way. The frequency of the races is 30 ‘.
Through this link, you can book a flight to Naples-Capodichino at the best price, comparing all the airlines.
WHAT TO SEE AT FESTA DEI GIGLI
The feast of the Gigli begins already the day before the ceremonial. There will be no stands and stalls, where you can find a little of everything, especially food products. Always the evening before Sunday, you can watch songs and dances around the still lilies.
During the morning, the Gigli and the Barca are taken to the main square of the city, Piazza Duomo, to receive the blessing of the bishop, and then be “dancing” to the rhythm of music. From the early afternoon, at dawn on Monday, you will witness incredible and spectacular tests of skill and strength of the lilies, boat and paranza, which follow a path through the streets of the city. June, is the most followed period of the event, but it is good to remember that the festival of the Lilies is not limited only to this day, but lasts all year, according to a complex ceremony. Starting from “A ‘Cacciata”, that is, the procession that parades through the streets of the city, presenting the Master of Feast.
WHERE TO SLEEP
Given the proximity, our advice is to find accommodation in Naples. Here, you will be spoiled for choice. However, if you want to stay in Nola, to enjoy the 2017 Festival of Lilies until late evening, you will find numerous solutions, especially just a few kilometers from the center. In the center of Nola, on the occasion of the Festa, it is almost impossible to find accommodation. Obviously, these solutions are suitable especially if you are self-driving and you can easily move with your own vehicle. Through this link, you can book accommodation at the best price.