If you love fall, then October is the perfect time to travel to Florence. The weather is great and the landscapes are stunning. Imagine waking up in the historic centre to a crisp autumn air and going for a walk along the reddened Chianti vineyards – what a joy! In Florence, October is also a good time to attend fairs, festivals, and traditional celebrations. Read on if you’d like to know what to do in Florence Italy in October!
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Chianti Region – Photo by Rowan Heuvel
Florence Biennial is an international contemporary art exhibition held at the Fortezza da Basso that allows worldwide artists to perform and exhibit their art. After, there is a prize called ‘Lorenzo il Magnifico’ awarded to the artist whose artwork is considered most culturally relevant or exquisite. You can book your tickets here.
Fiera Internazionale della Ceramica
The International Ceramics Fair is a yearly marketplace held on October 5th and 6th in Santissima Annunziata Square. Here, you can find vendors selling ceramics and other handmade items. Bring some unique Italian souvenirs back home!
Source: Facebook / Fiera della Ceramica
Festa di Santa Reparata
The Festa di Santa Reparata on October 8th is a religious celebration held in Florence’s city center. Santa Reparata and Saint John are Florence’s patrons, and celebrations include parades, guided visits to the Church of Santa Reparata and lighting candles.
Source: The Museums of Florence
What To Do in October in Florence Surrounding Area
Fiera di San Luca
The Fiera di San Luca, held from October 12th to the 20th, is one of the oldest cattle fairs in Europe, dating back to as early as the 16th century. Shepherds used to stop in Impruneta with their herds to trade cattle for merchant goods and to worship in Impruneta’s Marian sanctuary. Over time, this marketplace grew and merchants sold cattle, terracotta, textiles, and other products. Now, the market consists of more modern tools and products (tractors have been included with the livestock). You can also find activities like small fairs, tastings, fireworks, and more.
Source: Facebook/Fiera di San Luca
Festival della Castagna
The ‘Chestnut Festival’ is held on October 19th and 20th and can be found in Lucolena, in Greve in Chianti, near Florence. It’s a great chance to enjoy the autumn atmosphere by having roasted chestnuts and tasting some local products in a typical little Tuscan town. These include local cheeses and cured meats, jam, honey, and cookies (such as Brigidini).
Boccaccesca is a food festival held on October 5th through 7th in Certaldo, a typical Tuscan town near Siena. This festival includes marketplaces, wine tastings, cooking classes and more. This is a great opportunity to get to know Tuscany’s more local side.
The Festa dell’Uva (‘Grapes Party’) is a century-old, yearly celebration that takes place on September 29th in Impruneta, in the Chianti area. It promotes Impruneta’s local culture and products. The town is divided into four neighbourhoods: the Rione Fornace, Rione Pallò, Rione S.Antonio and Rione SS. Marie. Each town supports the celebration by sending local artists, creating partnerships, and more. Activities include fireworks, community dinners in the main squares, having ‘schiacciata con l’uva’ (‘grapes focaccia’) and ‘peposo’ a peppery meat-based dish. The 2019 edition is going to take place on September 29th, but similar activities are held throughout the month of September.