The Palio of Pisa

The Luminara di San Ranieri, with the myriad of lampanini decorating the faηades of the Pisan churches, palaces, towers and villas along the lungarni, has already been described in the previous chapter of this tourist guide.
Now... it is time to talk about the Palio!

Every year, on June 17th, four boats representing the historic districts the town is divided into (blue for Santa Maria, yellow for San Francesco, red for San Martino and green for Sant`Antonio) crewed with eight oarsmen, a cox and a "climber", vie with each other on the Arno.

The Palio of Pisa is not simply a regatta: at the finish line, a 10-metre tall mast stands on a floating platform; the climbers have to climb the mast with the help of some ropes and grab the banner bearing the colours of their district.

The origins of the Palio date back to 1292, when a similar contest was held on August 15th, Assumption Day. Since 1718, however, the Palio of Pisa has been taking place on San Ranieri`s day. The contest takes its cue from the expedition of the Christian fleet at the battle of Lepanto (1571).

Being fixed feasts, the Palio and the Luminara di San Ranieri do not always occur at weekend; on the contrary, they often occur during the week. We therefore suggest you to rent a holiday villa in Pisa for some days, so that you will not miss any of the two events.


Our most requested villas:
Villa Castiglioncello Villa sleeping 8+2 in Castiglioncello, in the province of Livorno, in Val di Cecina. Barbecue, Internet connection, air conditioning, wide garden, bicycles. The villa is just a few kilometres from the beach. Tennis club, riding stable and golf club nearby. More details
Farmhouse Buti Holiday farmhouse dating back to the 17th century in the medieval village of Buti, between Pisa and Lucca, a few kilometres from the beaches of Versilia. 8 sleeping accommodations, swimming pool, panoramic terrace. More details
Villa Casciana Holiday villa for rent in Lower Valdarno, between Pisa and Livorno, in Casciana Terme. 6/8 sleeping accommodations, swimming pool, air conditioning, barbecue equipment, hydromassage, satellite TV, Internet connection, tasting, cooking courses. SPAs nearby.
*Valid in some periods
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Villa Chiara Holiday villa with annex in Chianni (Pisa), in Valdera. 16/19 sleeping accommodations, fenced swimming pool, sauna, hydromassage, Internet connection, private tennis court, children`s playground, bowl pitch. A few kilometres from Rosignano Solvay and its beaches; thermal bath nearby.
*Valid in some periods
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