Fish, fireworks and festivals!
Each summer, the Amalfi Coast comes alive with a host of colorful, historic parades, spectacular religious celebrations and fantastic gastronomic fairs.
AMALFI - May / July
Regatta of the Ancient Maritime Republics
Every four years, between May and July, Amalfi hosts the Regatta of the Ancient Maritime Republics, a historic boat race held between Amalfi, Pisa, Venice and Genoa; the cities which, for centuries, fought for supremacy in the Mediterranean Sea.
The boats, built according to a 12th century model, are crewed by 8 rowers, a helmsman and reserves. The race is preceded by an impressive procession of costumed historical figures.
The 2km regatta starts at Capo Vettica and finishes directly opposite Marina Grande
AMALFI - 27 June
Festa di Sant'Andrea
Each June 27th, Amalfi holds a festival in honor of Sant'Andrea, the town's patron saint and the protector of fishermen and fishmongers.
The event commemorates the miraculous storm of 1544, apparently conjured up by the saint, which prevented the Saracen pirate Kair-Ad-Din from conquering the city.
The festival begins with a procession during which a statue of the saint, who the locals affectionately refer to as "'o' viecchio"(the Old One), is carried to the beach.
Here, the fishermen take over and it is their job to take the statue all the way to the Duomo.
The event concludes with a beautiful firework display over the sea surrounding the Amalfi Coast.
ATRANI - 22 July
Festa di Santa Maria Maddalena
If you like fireworks, you'll love Atrani's festival dedicated to Santa Maria Maddalena,when fireworks launched from the cliffs and the sea light up the night sky over the Amalfi Coast in a spectacular pyrotechnical display which pays tribute to Atrani's patron saint who, at the end of the thirteenth century, is said to have miraculously saved the town from attack by Alexandrian pirates.
The festival is also a great opportunity to sample local dishes like "sarchiapone", green squash stuffed with minced meat, mozzarella and eggs, served with tomato sauce.
PRAIANO - 1/4 August
Luminaria di San Domenico
Praiano's Luminaria di San Domenico takes place in the convent of Santa Maria a Castro.
The festival commemorates the moment when, shortly before giving birth, the mother of San Domenico dreamt of a dog carrying in its jaws a burning torch which set the earth on fire: a sign that her son would spread the word of God throughout the world.
During the festival, the town's inhabitants decorate their houses, gardens and porches with candles and torches. The highlight of the event is the carpet of burning candles in the Piazza of San Gennaro.
CETARA - First week of August
Le giornate del pesce azzurro
The coastal village of Cetara is famous for its tuna and anchovies, which form the basis of its culinary tradition. "Le Giornate del Pesce Azzurro" (Days of the Blue Fish), held in the first week of August each year, are the continuation of the town's "A tutto tonno" ('Tuna with Everything') event, first held in 1992.
A gastronomic fair and an important cultural event, the Days of the Blue Fish introduce visitors to Cetrara's ancient fishing tradition via tastings and a series of fascinating seminars, some of which are held aboard the Amalfi Coast's traditional tuna fishing boats.
In the evening, the town's port transforms into a huge, open air restaurant where holidaymakers can enjoy the freshest of fish, accompanied by traditional music.
CONCA DEI MARINI - 5 August
Festa della Madonna della Neve
The festival of the Madonna della Neve takes place in the church with which it shares its name, in the pretty coastal village of Conca dei Marini.
Mass is celebrated on the beach in front of the church, which is far too small to hold all the congregation. The service is followed by a procession of the area's traditional fishing boats, sailing to Amalfi.
On the home leg, the procession stops in Furore before returning to Conca dei Marini.
CONCA DEI MARINI - First week of August
"Sfogliatella Santa Rosa" Festival
During the first week of August each year, the small village of Conca dei Marini holds a festival in honor of the Santa Rosa Sfogliatella, a delicious cake which was invented by the nuns of the Santa Rosa Convent, back in the 17th century.
During the festival, hundreds of these pastries, the shape of lobster tails and filled with ricotta, sugar and candied fruits are distributed amongst the crowd.
POSITANO - 14/15 August
The Festival of Our Lady of the Assumption, is one of Positano's most important religious celebrations.
The festival both honors the town's protector and commemorates the ancient legend of how a ship carrying a Byzantine icon of the virgin Mary was beached in the bay of Positano. Not until the sailors gave the icon to the local inhabitants were they able to set sail once more.
On August 14th, the celebrations begin with the so-called "Alazata del Quadro" ("The Lifting of the Painting") in front of the Church of Santa Maria Assunta.
In the evening, a spectacular procession of illuminated boats heads to the "Mamma e Figlio" rocks by the beach of Fornillo before returning to the Spiaggia Grande beach and the Cathedral.
On August 15th, the festivities continue late into the night and conclude with a magnificent firework display over the sea, which lights up much of the Amalfi Coast.
AMALFI AND ATRANI - 31 August / 1 September
Byzantine New Year
The Byzantine New Year is a fascinating historical re-enactment of the nomination of the Grand Duke of Amalfi, which takes place in Amalfi and neighboring Atrani each year.
On the last day of August, Amalfi hosts the Byzantine Palio, complete with historic parade and medieval games.
On September 1st which, in the Byzantine period, was considered the beginning of the new year,
Atrani provides the stage for the reconstruction of the Duke's Ordination Ceremony.
POSITANO (Fornillo beach) - Last saturday of September
Festa del pesce
On the last Saturday in September, to mark the end of the summer season on the Amalfi Coast, a Fish Festival is held on Positano's Fornillo beach.
The meeting point is Positano's Piazza dei Mulini, from where a fleet of little fishing boats transport tourists and locals to the beach.
Here, accompanied by live music, visitors taste any number of delicious dishes made with freshly-caught fish.
The evening's activities include a concert, and, at around 23.00, a demonstration of night fishing.