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February - St. Valentine's Day, Italy

ITALY | Saturday, 17 January 2009 | Views [2531]

Location: Terni, Italy. The feast takes place outside the Basilica di San Valentino.

Dates: Throughout February, but particularly 14 February

Level of Participation: 5 – the feast, and whatever other St Valentine’s fun you can think of, is open to all


Where better to swing hands with a loved one on St Valentine’s Day than at the St Valentine’s Festival in the eponymous saint’s Umbrian hometown. Here, it is said, Valentine would often give gifts of flowers from his own garden to young visitors. Two such visitors fell in love and married, forever linking St Valentine with love. Chocolate-makers and florists have been forever grateful.

Terni dedicates itself to love and romance throughout February, but undoubtedly you will want to be here for the big day: February 14. Terni knows this and celebrates St Valentine’s Day with a giant feast around the basilica where the saint’s remains are interred. Components of the festival include a jewellery-making competition and the ‘A Year of Loving’ award, which honours a special act of love…something like a Nobel Passion Prize.

Essentials: St Valentine’s Day in Terni is best done with a partner.

Local Attractions: Pay a loving visit to St Valentine (or at least his remains) in the Basilica di San Valentino, and find beauty at the artificial Marmore Waterfalls, created by the Romans 7km out of town.

Travel Safety Advice From The World Nomads Travel Safety Hub: We might have to dodge a few rotten tomatoes after this one, but the only danger at this festival is that of a broken heart.

More Info: The Terni section of the official Umbrian tourist board website (www.umbria-turismo.it) or the Comune di Terni (www.comune.terni.it in Italian)

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Information provided courtesy of Lonely Planet
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Tags: italy, st. valentines day, world festivals

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