The Great Carnival of Maiori, Amalfi Coast
The Great Carnival of Maiori is one of the most exciting celebrations of Carnival in Italy.
Carnevale, Carnival, it’s a festive season between Christmas and Lent. During this time of the year a lot of events are held in every city.
These events somehow reminds me of the circus, especially because during parades, shows and public street parties people usually wear costumes and masks.
Cities like Venice, Viareggio and Imperia are particularly famous for their shows and parades, but if you’re visiting the Amalfi Coast in February the Carnival of Maiori is something that is worth to add to your bucket list.
Maiori and the Amalfi Coast
Maiori is one of the most enchanting spots on the Amalfi Coast and it’s much quieter than other popular towns, such as Ravello.
It’s a seaside village surrounded by mountains with one of the most extensive beaches on the coast.
During the Middle Ages this town was the main port of the Amalfi Republic, for this reason there are really interesting buildings such as convents and aristocratic palaces that you can visit still nowadays.
I love Maiori because it combines the beauty of nature with the charm of history and architecture, but it offers also hiking trails and excellent gastronomy.
The Carnival of Maiori
It’s said that the Carnival of Maiori is the result of the local rivalry with Minori.
During the last 60s Minori started a Carnival competition for masked groups, open to people coming from the surrounding villages. In1970 the group of Maiori was ranked to the last place and they didn’t take it well!
That’s why they decided to start their own Carnival parade from the following year.
Since that day, the Carnival of Maiori has become increasingly interesting over time.
It lasts about 10 days, during which the streets are filled with confetti, children wearing masks, while performances and events are held here and there, including the parade of the carnival floats.
This success depends not only on the commitment of the participants but also on geography. Maiori has wider spaces than the other villages of the Amalfi Coast, therefore is more suitable for hosting a bigger parade.
The Carnival Floats of Maiori
Many of the inhabitants of Maiori are involved in organizing the Carnival, which is not only a show for visitors, but also an event that connects people and allows to pass on artistic and craft skills that risked being lost.
The parade of the allegorical floats is the most anticipated event of the Carnival of Minori.
The construction of the huge floats lasts about 3 months.
There are 4 groups of workers in town and each of them build its own.
They work non-stop, modeling steel cables and papier-mâché to create characters and sets, painting every detail, making the movements of each part and the lighting and sound effects. They do really struggle to win the title of the most beautiful carnival float of the year!
A peculiarity is that the floats are themed. This year the theme is “Civilization and historical periods” to celebrate the European year of ‘slow tourism’.
During Carnival the floats parade throughout the city, accompanied by their own dance groups. They leave from the hamlet of Vecite, reach the Norman Tower and go along the promenade to the amphitheater of the marina.
Being part of this event is an unforgettable experience that will give you some of the best memories of the Amalfi Coast.
For 2019 the Carnival of Maiori will take place between February 23rd and March 10th