Snapshots: Sagra delle Mele at Ussassai, Sardinia, Italy

Just a little teaser of my favourite photo from a recent trip deep into the centre of Sardinia, for the 21st Sagra delle Mele – The 21st Apple Festival, held at Ussassai, a depopulated, colourful town that’s full of cheer and excellent hospitality.

Stay tuned, there’s more to come from this magnificent festival and surrounding mountainous area that completely stole my senses, and heart.

Inside Sardinia: Cortes Apertas at Onanì

Inside Sardinia: Cortes Apertas at Onanì

Cortes Apertas is an open house, held yearly in several towns and cities in the deep, vast tremendous centre of SardiniaBarbagia. It is a colourful festival run by the locals of each town; they open their doors to the wonders of their beautiful, simple life, far away from wi-fi and reality tv. They show you how to make long pasta and pasta with your thumb and they ask if you’d like to take part, to try the ancient traditions that have been hidden away and kept secret for so many decades, all the while filling your cup with homemade wine, liqueur, and beer.  Continue reading

Handcrafted Gifts from Oliena, Sardinia

Handcrafted Gifts from Oliena, Sardinia

The thing that sticks with me the most from my weekend getaway to Oliena are the people. In every cortes (home) we entered, we were greeted with humble welcomes and gracious smiles. Each and every artist was eager to explain his or her handcrafted goods. I popped into cortes Sa Mea and was warmly greeted by Angelo. I was drawn to the traditional necklaces he had placed on an old tree. I picked up a necklace and a bell rang out, I must have looked surprised as Angelo quickly came over to offer the background to the necklace I eventually purchased.

cortes-apertas-autunno-in-barbagia-2016-by-jennifer-avventura

The necklace is worn by women who are pregnant. The bell bounces on the woman’s stomach, ringing out soft chimes for the developing baby to hear, supposedly calming the baby and calling out to the angels for protection.

Even though I have no intention of becoming pregnant, I was still drawn to the necklace, its sound and sway, so I bought it. I peeked around the small shop and noticed a yellow face in the shape of the island of Sardinia. I love yellow, I love Sardinia and I love handcrafted goods, so another little gift in the bag.

If you’re interested to know more about this artist:

Sa Mea – Creazioni Artistiche
Angelo Brundu
(349) 880-2126
angelottos@tiscali.it

Do you like to buy traditional gifts from the country you visit?

Inside Sardinia: The People of Cortes Apertas at Oliena

Inside Sardinia: The People of Cortes Apertas at Oliena

From early September to the beginning of December small towns throughout the Barbagia region of Sardinia open their doors for tourists and locals alike. It’s a refreshing time to wander ancient alleys and discover a Sardinia from hundreds of years ago while sampling the local flavours of wine, beer, bread, sweets, suckling pig, wild boar gnocchi and so much more! Here are just a few of the warm, generous people we met during our adventure to Oliena for Cortes Apertas – Autunno in Barbagia 2016.

oliena-cortes-apertasy-jennifer-avventura-2016

It is here at the foot of the Supramonte mountain where you can immerse yourself in a world of historical flavours, ancient traditions, and spectacular panoramic views of neighbouring towns and mountain ranges so vast, wild and spectacular that it leaves your mind and soul spinning.

A huge thank-you to the people of Oliena, who put on a spectacular event, who opened their hearts, homes and traditions to the world and who collectively put a smile on thousands of people’s faces, including mine. The memories will last a lifetime. Grazie mille.

Have you gone to any Cortes Apertas – Autunno in Barbagia? Tell me about it in the comments below.

Mystical Mamuthones from Mamoiada

Mystical Mamuthones from Mamoiada

The mystical Mamuthones from Mamoiada have always stirred my soul and made me question the origin of their existence. I have attended festivals in Sassari and Olbia where the Mamuthones preformed before the inquisitive public, but I had never witnessed their ritual dance in their town, on their turf, until this past Sunday when I attended Tappas in Mamujada. There is something so raw and connected to nature in their dance that pulls me in, curious, wanting to know more. So I went searching …

Mural in Mamoiada

The Mamuthone legacy is shrouded in secrecy Continue reading

Complete Event Guide to Summer in Sardinia 2013

Here it is folks – the who, what, where and when of summer 2013 in Sardinia, Italy. Concerts, culture, food festivals, jazz festivals, cinema and much, much more! For the first time in five and a half years, I have seen something that gets me so excited that I want to do cartwheels, back-flips and scream from the top of Gennargentu. Never in the almost 6 years that I have lived in Sardinia have I seen something so organized, articulate and thorough! I would like to personally thank the ingenious people at SardegnaEventi24.it for putting together such an elaborate and informative map listing all events in Sardinia for summer 2013.

Event Listings Sardinia JulyAugust 2013

Now you can have your very own event map! Complete with listings for every town and city in Sardinia. Print it, save it, carry it in your back pocket but whatever you do, be sure to download it – it’s super FREE.

To download your FREE event guide for Sardinia Summer 2013 please visit this link: Il Foglio di Sardegna Eventi; tell them I sent you!

So many wonderful events and so little time. Which event(s) will you be going to?

Sassy Sassari a Photographic Day Trip

Sassy Sassari, Sardinia, Italy

Sassari – a sprawling city on the northwest coast of Sardinia, population 130,000. Sassari is the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Sardinia. Sassari is a city rich in art, history and culture and the economy relies heavily on tourism.

Duomo di Sassari – San Nicola

During the day, in the summer months, these steps are filled with tourists, locals and young children enjoying a refreshing gelato. But at night, when the tourists, locals and children are in bed is when this duomo comes to life.

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VIDEO – The Kiss | I Candelieri 2012

Sassari – The kiss between two guilds. The Carpenters (Gremio dei Falegnami) and The Peasants (Gremio dei Contadini.)

You can read my full article on this great event here: The Descent of the Candle Bearers | I Candelieri 2012

Have you seen Sardinia’s 2nd largest festival?

The Descent of the Candle Bearers | I Candelieri 2012

Sassari – August 14th, 2012 – The 2nd largest festival in Sardinia owes its name to the large ‘candlesticks’ which men parade though-out town for a six-hour parade of strength, endurance, song and dance.

I Candelieri was born around 1500, a vow to the Virgin Mary; and to give thanks to the survival of three plagues during the 1600’s, which killed thousands of people on the island of Sardinia.

I Candelieri – The Descent of the Candle Bearers is a festival which embodies the spirit and traditions of Sassari. Its origins date back to the Middle Ages, when Sassari, under Pisan domination, adopted a modified version of the Pisan tradition of an offering, similar to a large wooden wax-covered altarpiece to the Madonna on the eve of the Assumption.

10 candlesticks with 8 men per candle parade throughout the town to the beat of drums, clapping and chanting in local dialect. The last stop, at midnight, is St. Rosario’s Church where every Candelieri receives a midnight blessing from the church.

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Festa della Trinita | June 1st-4th, 2012 | Sardinia, Italy

A celebration in honour of the church Santissima Trinità dei Monti, in central Italy. The late renaissance church dominates the Italian sky above the picturesque Spanish Steps.

This festival generally takes place at the end of May and beginning of June, yearly.  With festivities held in most Italian towns, cities and mountains!

This spectacular four-day festival is in Trinita D’Agultu, Sardinia, Italy and is a must see! During the evening hours the streets are filled with local vendors selling their traditional Sardinian wares: items made of cork, local hand crafted jewelry, textiles, delicious Sardinian sweets and so much more!

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