Amalfi Coast, markets and Christmas cribs

Campania (region of southern Italy) is one of the most suggestive regions during the Christmas season. Naples attracts tourists and travelers who will be able to contemplate wonderful cribs in San Gregorio Armeno.

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However, there is a place that during the same period of the year is even more suggestive than Naples: the Amalfi Coast. In fact, during the night, the landscape on the coast looks like a manger. Amalfi, Positano and Praiano, between the sea and the mountain, with their colorful houses anchored in the cliffs, offer, especially for those who come from the sea, a unique spectacle, which can be considered just as one of the most beautiful world.

All over the coast, Christmas parties with lights begin to be prepared and, starting on December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Christmas markets and other manifestations between religious and profane begin: shows of theater, of prose, of poetry, of concerts in the squares and in the churches.

In Positano, in the historic Piazza dei Mulini, the traditional handicraft market takes place. Here we can contemplate and buy all the figures of the manger, from the simplest to the most elaborate. In the same way we find ceramic objects typical of this area or paper manufactured figures (the activities related to paper were, during a period, very important in the coastal area). We can also taste many typical products of La Campania, such as the Christmas sweets known as “struffoli”, some balls of sweet pasta previously fried, later wrapped in honey and decorated with colored confetti.

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The zampogna is an ancient musical instrument. The figures of the zampognari (those who played the instrument) are part of the Italian manger, especially the cribs of La Campania. The zampognari parade throughout the Christmas period playing their instruments in the streets and squares of Amalfi, Tovere, Pogerola, Lone, Pastena and Vettica.

The town of Pogerola is known for artistic cribs. There are figurines of shepherds of the XVIII century.

In Ravello, however, we found cribs made with corals.

La Grotta di Fornillo, in Positano housed one of the most curious cribs in the world; We could say that it is here since always, since it seems that it is part of the rock.

For many years, divers have placed the girl in the incredible aquatic crib of the Grotta di Smeraldo.

Among the different celebrations that take place between Christmas and the Befana (January 6), the most attractive to visitors are the living cribs that can be enjoyed in different cities.

Birth is reproduced in all churches; Among the most admired, we find the Church of the Carmine, in Atrani.

All the churches in this area are very beautiful and worth visiting not only for their mangers:

In Positano the Church of La Asunción has a cupola lined with majolica.

The Cathedral of Amalfi still has today the original door sent to be melted in Constantinople in 1066 and, from the Cathedral, access to the Cloister of Paradise.

One of the most well-known traditions is that of the blessing of the children (each one carries his little figurine of the child Jesus so that it is blessed before putting it in the manger of the house).

Amalfi was the first of all the Italian maritime republics and its naval potential of the past is reflected by the remains of its naval base, a great Gothic construction. Today, if we look towards the sea, we will see a large number of boats, yachts and boats at any time of the year.