Nativity scenes… live in Tuscany!

In Italy, the tradition of nativity scenes at Christmas time is really strong and almost all Catholic families have one at home. In Tuscany, this tradition is strengthen by the fact that several hamlets put on re-enactments of the Christmas story with real people in flesh and blood! This could seem weird, but people contribute to create a special atmosphere around Christmas and it is so special that even non-Catholics can appreciate the tradition. Nativity re-enactments involve residents, animals and buildings, as well as the streets of the city centre and a place used as the set of the manger. Anyone can bring to life the various characters of the nativity: angels, oxen, shepherds, Wise Men and Baby Jesus family. The period in which live nativity scenes takes place is between Christmas Eve and the Epiphany and the tradition and dates change from town to town. Here are some of Tuscany's most famous live nativity scenes!
Snow in Florence Guido Andreoni on Flickr
Snow in Florence Guido Andreoni on Flickr
Arezzo province Florence province
  • Cerreto Guidi (December 23, January 6)
  • Castelfiorentino (December 26, January 6)
  • Pontassieve (Comunità Parrocchiale di S. Brigida – December 24 and 26, January 6)
Grosseto province
  • Porto Ercole, Monte Argentario (December 25 and 26, January 6)
Nativity scene Photo Credits: lyonora
Nativity scene Photo Credits: lyonora
Leghorn province Lucca province Massa Carrara province
Nativity scene Photo Credits: -taro
Nativity scene Photo Credits: -taro
Pisa province
  • Lari
Prato province
  • Iolo (December 24, 9pm)
Pistoia province
  • Pescia
  • Castelvecchio
Siena province Do you have other suggestions? All the links unfortunately are in Italian, but if you need help for the translation, just leave a comment!