Enjoy the magic of the Noto Infiorata festival, one of the most colourful celebrations in Sicily. Discover the art of flower carpet.

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A magical event that combines religion, folklore, and the beauty of nature in spring. If you visit Italy in spring, there is no doubt that the 'infiorate' are a wonderful event to witness. From north to south, there are several infiorata festivals in Italy during this period.

Among them, there is one that is particularly loved, not only by Italians, but by tourists from all over the world. We are talking about the Noto Infiorata festival. The beautiful Sicilian town of Noto, famous for its fascinating Baroque architecture, is transformed between May and June into an explosion of colours and scents. We want to take you with us on this journey to discover the Noto Infiorata festival, shall we?

Noto Infiorata festival : the flower carpet that captures the senses

Every year in May, the city of Noto, Sicily, is transformed into an open-air museum, where master florists create floral carpets of extraordinary beauty. This celebration of spring and nature attracts visitors from all over the world.

In this article, we explore the history and importance of the Noto Infiorata Festival, the techniques used to create the floral carpets, and the programme of the event. You will discover why the Noto Infiorata Festival is a unique and unforgettable experience for all those who love Italian art, nature, and culture. To complete this experience, you could also take the opportunity to visit nearby Syracuse, where the Maniace Castle, a fortress dating back to the Norman period, offers a further dive into the history and architectural beauty of Sicily.

Discover the history and architecture of Maniace Castle

The Noto Infiorata Festival is an evocative event every year on the third Sunday in May. This fabulous event has no religious roots but is a 'Salute to Spring.'

Born in the early 1980s, this initiative originates in the meeting of Noto Genzano di Roma flower artists at the behest of the Provincial Tourist Board. In May 1980, local administrators invited artists from Genzano di Roma to create paintings according to their technique to promote tourism in the southeastern part of Sicily.

Precisely because of this, Saturday 10 May 1980 became a historic date, and every year since then, on the third Sunday in May, the historic city of Noto, in the heart of its 'Stone Garden', hosts one of the fascinating floral mosaics in Europe. This is the Infiorata of Via Nicolaci: a magical carpet of flowers paints the entire street.

The event began as a tourist event but has become a popular festival involving the entire city over time. In fact, the Flower Carpet of Noto has also become an opportunity to conceive and compare with other areas of culture. Each year, a new theme is chosen for the event, which comes to life through an original and enchanting display.

Via Corrado Nicolaci, close to Noto Cathedral, becomes the stage for the flower carpet. It is adorned with an explosion of colors and scents, a sea of flowers, and a magnificent carpet of carnations, roses, daisies, and wildflowers. Local artists create sketches of the enormous floral carpets, which measure 7 metres in length and 4 metres in width. The event starts Thursday night and lasts until Sunday, when thousands of visitors flock to see the wonderful flower arrangements.

The Flower Carpet offers the opportunity to discover the entire city. The festival also includes a series of cultural events dotted around the city streets and in the noble palaces. During this event, it is difficult not to be enchanted by Noto. Colourful, romantic, and historical, the Baroque city is transformed into a magical place. Suffice it to say that Noto has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status for its beautiful Cathedral of San Nicolò.

Moreover, one can learn about and buy typical Sicilian products by wandering the markets. Also, you can admire the Church of San Domenico and the Theatre on the side streets adjacent to the Corso.

The Art of the Flower Carpet of Noto

Noto Infiorata Festival

The Flower Carpet of Noto is considered a temporary work of art, created with thousands of meticulously arranged flower petals and careful attention to detail.

The designs of the Flower Carpet are created by the best local artists and are unique for each festival edition. The paving space dedicated to each design measures 7 metres in length and 4 metres in width. The design is first drawn by hand on the pavement of the famous Via Nicolaci. The flower laying begins after devising the motif and the work's shape.

Around 400,000 flowers are used for the Infiorata di Noto, some of which come from the 'Val di Noto' area. The most commonly used flowers are chrysanthemums, gerberas, carnations, and roses. In addition to these typical May flowers, the master florists often use fennel, lentisk, twigs, leaves, and stems, as well as bran, rice, peat, and legumes.

The experience of the Flower Carpet of Noto: edition 2024

The Noto Infiorata Festival 2024 will be held from 17 to 21 May, with the theme 'Homage to Giacomo Puccini on his Centenary: the Maestro living in time and art'.

On Friday 17 May, the master florists will use flowers to create veritable works of art inspired by the musical genius of Giacomo Puccini. A floral tribute celebrating the unforgettable melodies that have touched the hearts of millions of people around the world. This artistic event is a unique and emotional tribute to the great composer, who left an indelible mark on the history of music.

Visitors will be able to admire the splendid works from 18 to 21 May. In detail, the Infiorata will be open to visitors at the following times:

Saturday 18: from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Sunday 19: from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Monday 20 and Tuesday 21: from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.

This artistic, flower-filled event is made possible thanks to the elaborate irrigation system. This allows the freshness of the flowers to be preserved for the entire five-day duration of the event.

While visiting the Noto Infiorata Festival, also take the opportunity to visit nearby Syracuse. Don't miss the opportunity to explore the Neapolis Archaeological Park, where you can admire wonders such as the Greek Theatre, the Roman Amphitheatre, and the Ear of Dionysius. This is a perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in ancient history and enjoy the natural and architectural beauty of two of Sicily's most fascinating cities.

Discover the Neapolis Archaeological Park

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