Valentine's Day in Vico del Gargano: Between Legend and Tradition

Vico del Gargano, nestled in the beating heart of the Gargano, in Puglia, is transformed into a stage of celebration and tradition on the occasion of Valentine's Day, the patron saint of lovers and, here, also the protector of citrus fruits. This village, listed among "The most beautiful villages in Italy", offers its visitors a unique experience, steeped in history, culture and romance.


The Legend of Valentine's Day

The celebration of Valentine's Day has its roots in a mix of ancient traditions, ranging from Lupercalia Roman rites of purification and natural rebirth, up to medieval beliefs when it was thought that birds began their mating period in mid-February.
These customs helped shape Valentine's Day as the holiday of romantic love, celebrated around the world today. The figure of Saint Valentine of Terni emerges in this context as a symbol of generosity and love, legends tell of the gesture of giving a dowry to a poor young woman, allowing her to get married and saving her from her perdition.

Vico del Gargano and Its Unique Traditions

the Vicolo del Bacio

In Vico del Gargano, Saint Valentine is not only the saint of lovers but also the protector of citrus fruits. Tradition has it that every year, before February 14th, citizens prepare the throne of Saint Valentine, adorning it with over 5 quintals of oranges, in homage to his blessing on the local citrus groves. The village comes alive with the Vicolo del Bacio and the well of promises, symbolic places where couples renew their love, crossing narrow passages that force them to touch each other and share intimate promises.

The medieval village and its wonders

The ancient village of Vico del Gargano, with its medieval historic center, offers visitors glimpses of rare beauty, where time seems to have stopped. The Norman castle, the city walls and the towers tell centuries of history, while the churches, among which the Matrice with the altar of San Valentino stands out, preserve treasures of art and devotion. The Trappeto Maratea, an ancient oil mill now a museum, testifies to the importance of olive growing in the economic and cultural life of the village.

Nature and Traditions: An Indissoluble Bond

Vico del Gargano extends across an area rich in biodiversity, from citrus groves and olive groves that reach up to the bays of Calenella and Saint Menaius, up to the wild nature of Umbra Forest. This deep bond between the village and its land is manifested in the feast of Valentine's Day, a moment of celebration that unites the community and attracts visitors from everywhere, eager to discover the cultural roots of this land and participate in a unique event, where love and tradition come together in an unforgettable experience.

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