The carnival of Acireale, one of the most fascinating in Italy
Considered the most impressive of Sicily, this carnival takes place in an impressive Baroque city rich in monuments and treasures, in the province of Catania.
The festival has a very ancient tradition: already in the 16th century a big event took place in February, in which spontaneously the whole people took part. A special feature of this festival was the litter of rotten eggs and citrus on the streets until an edict forbade this "game".
At the beginning of the 18th century, the carnival was redesigned and its refined version was enriched with a new figure, the "Abbatazzi". These were folk poets who recited rhymes along the streets of Acireale.
In the 19th century, the "Cassariata" was introduced, or the "Lando" procession, in which splendid horse-drawn carriages drove along the city and the noblemen seated in it threw confetti to the people.
It was not until the 30s of the 20th century that masks made of papier-mâché were introduced, a tradition that was later supplemented with motif carts, surrounded by colorful mask costumes and dance groups.
Today, the Carnival of Acireale is even more spectacular thanks to the imposing flower-cart procession, attracting thousands of tourists every year.
Another special feature of this carnival is its repetition in summer, and more specifically in August. Here, Acireale benefits from the mild Sicilian climate to present the theme cars again.
An additional reason to visit Sicily and especially to visit this impressive Baroque city and the nearby attractions such as Catania and the Etna, without forgetting the enchanting Sicilian sea.