Enjoy blooms and buds transformed into art at the colourful Infiorata di Noto Festival in southern Sicily.
- When? The third weekend of May.
- Where? Noto, Sicily
- Price: The street displays are free to look at; however other festival events may be ticketed.
We promise this isn't the start of a bad joke but what do Jesus' face, The Little Mermaid and a sumo wrestler have in common? No idea? Head to Sicily to find out, where all three have been created using flowers.
Every May, the town of Noto comes alive with colour at the Infiorata di Noto (Noto Flower Festival). This weekend event sees the town's streets covered in flower mosaics, which depict everything from mythical creatures to cultural icons.
Infiorata di Noto is held on the third Sunday of May and brings together artists, locals and visitors from across the island and beyond. One of Italy's most colourful festivals, this 37 year old tradition sees impossibly creative designs - it's often hard to believe the murals are created from flowers. On the Friday, local and international artists spend the day working on their allotted area, assembling their vibrant designs into patterns, shapes and scenes ready for the weekend show.
A celebration of spring, the festival artists use flowers from across the island which are especially grown for the event. On Saturday and Sunday crowds visit to wander through the bloom-filled streets and take in the parades, festival atmosphere and music. Infiorata di Noto has a decidedly Italian feel with an emphasis on heritage and tradition - head to one of the town's cafes or bars which serve authentic Sicilian dishes to hungry visitors. The postcard-perfect backdrop of Noto's ancient churches and Baroque architecture makes the festival even more beautiful.
After a weekend of celebrating all things spring-like the displays get dismantled; in an unconventional but lovely-to-watch way. On Monday, the town's children are allowed to run through and break up the displays in a tribute to the ideas of destruction and renewal. Make sure you get there before the melee of excited children - but you can leave the bad jokes behind.
- Get there: Fly into Sicily and use the train to get around. Taxis are very expensive.
- Stay: Find a hotel in the heart of Noto where you can enjoy views of the city from your very own balcony.
*We do our very best to verify the dates of our events but please check with the official event provider before booking your flights. We would hate for you to be disappointed!