• Food & Wine
    • Lifestyle

8 summer festivals not to be missed

Festivals that reveal a region rich with tradition and plenty of tasty treats!

Festivals, local products, traditions, and chances to taste our region's local excellences. Exhibitions and craftspeople who hand down the crafts of long ago.

 

1. The Melon Festival in the province of Mantua
Every year in June, the streets and squares in the old town centre of Viadana host the Mantua Melon festival. Melons (usually Muskmelons or Cantalupe) are a typical crop in this area and they can be tasted and bought, together with prosciutto, Lambrusco, Grana Padano and other local products thanks to the main companies here.  Dinners and themed tasting sessions in restaurants and holiday farmhouses taking part in the initiative. At the farmers’ market there are also hobby stands and the shops will be open in the evening for purchases as you stroll.

2. Festival of San Giovanni in Ossuccio, with illuminated boats and fireworks
Along the banks of Lake Como the summer’s most important appointment is definitely the Festival of San Giovanni, held on the weekend following celebrations for the patron saint in the second half of June. 
The Festival of San Giovanni is also called the “Sagra di Lumaghitt”, or the festival of snails as it is customary to eat polenta and snails on the Eve of Saint John and then sail the empty shells across the lake holding lit candles. Today tradition is followed with a wonderful light show thanks to the many boats in the gulf between the island of Comacina and Ossuccio, all lit up with candles. A big party that also involves towns nearby and finishes with a wonderful firework display.

3. Tortelli & Tortelli, a traditional excellence from Crema
One of the typical local food festivals we recommend is "Tortelli & Tortelli" held in Crema in August and dedicated to the typical Crema tortello, filled with amaretti and mostaccino biscuits, citron, nutmeg, lemon, marsala eggnog, Grana Padano cheese and raisins, and served with butter, sage and grate Grana Padano. Six days of fun in company and promotion of typical dishes from Crema. 

4. Treviglio and the Turta dei Treì festival
Just a few kilometres outside Bergamo, in September Treviglio holds the “Turta dei Trei” festival to celebrate its typical cake. Set up following a competition organised by the shops in the city of Treviglio to create a cake for the local festival of the Madonna delle Lacrime di Treviglio. Delicious and fragrant, it is made with shortcrust pastry, eggs, vanilla and almonds. It could be called the most classic example of the Italian “torta della nonna”, made with simple, natural, genuine, fresh, local ingredients.

5. Bitto festival in Gerola Alta 
A must in Gerola Alta, in the province of Sondrio, is the Bitto cheese festival in September. Held to celebrate the return to town of the shepherds with their flocks from the mountains. The milk produced during the summer in the high pastures is processed up there and the rounds of Bitto cheese start to fill the shelves in the cheese factories and the farms. During the festival, you can visit the old town centre of Gerola and the characteristic villages of Fenile and Castello, the exhibition covering the fifty years of Bitto and the historic locations of the Eco-museum, the Casera del Bitto, the old mill, the loom and the carpentry shop. There is obviously also tasting of typical products, dinner in company and performances by folklore groups. 

6. Tasting and delicious dishes at the National Gorgonzola Festival
A must in September is the National Gorgonzola Festival, a chance to get a close up look at this very important product and rediscover its place of origin. Gorgonzola is one of the best-known and most popular cheeses with DOP marking (with protected denomination of origin) both in Italy and internationally. Days filled with exhibitions, teaching workshops, displays of artistic crafts, concerts, dances, sport and performances for children and adults. All this without ignoring, obviously, the star of the festival: gorgonzola. For tasting, trying, and discovering through samples and dishes.

7. Polenta Festival in Corno Giovine 
An event that shows off the ability of the maestros in Trentino Alto Adige, which every year bring the secrets of “Polenta carbonara” to the Bassa Atesina. A recipe handed down from one generation to the next that has kept all its genuine, simple flavour from the past. The different kinds of polenta can be tasted during the festival in October. From the more traditional combination with cotechino, cod or braised meat, to more sophisticated pairings with shin, wild boar and horsemeat, right through to the typical Lodi dish of polenta and raspadura, cheese served in traditional wafer-thin shavings. 

8. An appointment with art in Valle Camonica
Bienno, a medieval town in the province of Brescia, in Valle Camonica on the border with the Adamello National Park, hosts a Market-Exhibition in August. Hugely famous throughout the north of Italy, it is one of the most popular events in the area. A real moment for art, crafts and ancient trades in one of Italy’s Most Beautiful Villages, thanks to the skilled hands of sculptors, blacksmiths and craftspeople.

Credits Photo @DiegoBonacina
 

On the same topic

Wine and Flavor Trail Lombardy

Lombardy was one of the first Italian regions that concretely developed the idea of ​​Wine Roads promoting its realization
  • Food & Wine
Wine and Flavor Trail in Lombardy, authentic tourism

Miccone

  • Food & Wine
Miccone di Stradella

The wine and tastes route

This is a fascinating route, that leads you to the discovery of the Nebbiolo delle Alpi
  • Food & Wine
The wine and tastes route

Street food in milan

Street food is the best solution for a quick lunch break and a snack
  • Food & Wine
Street food in Milan

Bergamo, hunting for flavors

Valleys of extraordinary beauty, like the city that looks at them from the walls. Wines, cheeses, pasta.
  • Food & Wine
Bergamo, hunting for flavors

Peperone di Voghera

Il peperone di Voghera è una varietà autoctona e pregiata e merita una particolare attenzione per le sue particolari caratteristiche organolettiche
  • Food & Wine
Peperone di Voghera

When food meets fashion

Prêt à ... manger. When food meets fashion
  • Food & Wine
Prêt à… manger. When food meets fashion

The mantua pumpkin

From peel to seeds, pumpkin is a real "jolly" in the kitchen
  • Food & Wine
The Mantua pumpkin

Cassoeula in Brianza

Typical Lombard dish of peasant origin
  • Food & Wine
Cassoeula in Brianza, history and variations

Agritourism in Pavia: where you feel ‘naturally’ at home

Dove è naturale sentirsi a casa
  • Food & Wine
Agritourism in Pavia: where you feel ‘naturally’ at home

Lodi cheeses

Curiosities and characteristics of cheeses for you to taste in Lodi and surrounding area
  • Food & Wine
Formaggi lodigiani

Brescia Caviar

A surprise in the Po Valley
  • Food & Wine
Brescia caviar, a delicacy of the Po Valley

NavigarMangiando

NavigarMangiando...an alternative evening and a new way of experiencing the Navigli
  • Food & Wine
Navigarmangiando

Wine Cellars in Casteggio

An ancient village in the Oltrepò Pavese, rich in high quality vineyards
  • Food & Wine
Wine cellars in Casteggio, a hidden treasure

Varese Local Products Guide

The typical products with which to prepare the dining table are varied and include all the dishes: from appetizers to desserts
  • Food & Wine
Varese local products guide, essential tips

Eating Lombardy

Lombardy shows its excellence with the unique and traditional flavors of each single territory, but it is also international cuisine
  • Food & Wine
Suggestions for eating in Lombardy: restaurants, international and local dishes

La Strada del Gusto Cremonese

The best elements of Cremona's territory in a selection of products, places and itineraries proposed by The Road of Cremona's Taste.
  • Food & Wine
La Strada del Gusto Cremonese

Grape Harvest in Lombardy

It is an evocative period to visit the vineyards, to participate together with the winemakers in the grape harvest and the early stages of processing
  • Food & Wine
Were to go during grape harvest in Lombardy

Oltrepò Pavese, le Vie del Gusto

The tranquil Oltrepò is the home of 36 DOC-certified wines, which accompany a traditional cuisine with its roots in Italy’s remote history
  • Food & Wine
Salame di Varzi

Teglio, the home of pizzoccheri

The small Valtellina town of Teglio is the home of pizzoccheri, the tasty dish of buckwheat pasta with cheese and vegetables
  • Food & Wine
Pizzoccheri, Valtellina