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The dawn of Saint Nicholas, between celebration and tradition. Discover the party in the alleys of old Bari!


Saint Nicholas Day December BariEvery year, exactly every December 6th , there is a fixed date with traditions and celebrations for what is commonly called "St. Nicholas' Day" .

On 6 December , in fact, the Basilica of San Nicola and of Bari Vecchia celebrate the Saint with various rites and popular traditions that are repeated every year to renew the strong bond that binds the people of Bari and the faithful to the patron saint of the city.

To pay homage to Saint Nicholas , on the night between 5 and 6 December the Basilica opens its doors to all the faithful, who are normally many, to be able to attend the celebration of the first Holy Mass of the day , all this while among the characteristic alleys of Old Bari (decorated with lights) begins to rise a mix of aromas for the preparation of hot chocolate, sgagliozze, breasts and Christmas sweets .

Saint Nicholas hot chocolate traditionHow come you ask? The popular tradition of Bari is that after the 5 am mass a very sweet breakfast is had with hot chocolate prepared in the alleys of the ancient village; However, there are also slices of fried polenta (what we previously defined as sgagliozze) , breasts and, considering the Christmas atmosphere, also typical Bari-style Christmas .

Feast of Saint Nicholas 6 December BariBut the tradition , which has always been an intertwining of faith, worship and gastronomy, also includes the Nicolaian torchlight procession to the square of the Basilica , the lighting of the Christmas tree in Piazza del Ferrarese (in the evening) and finally the fireworks artifice on the Sant'Antonio pier (one of the most beautiful viewpoints on the Bari seafront) .
As you can imagine, with the day of Saint Nicholas, also officially arrives in Bari , and it couldn't be otherwise considering that Saint Nicholas, in addition to being the patron saint of the Apulian capital and the protector of another beautiful European city such as Amsterdam is also the Saint who inspired the myth of Santa Claus . Yes, you understood correctly, Bari and Christmas have a very strong bond due to Saint Nicholas , an aspect to make your Christmas in the city even more special.

It goes without saying that if you find yourself in Bari 6 December , or in any case in the vicinity of the capital, it could be very interesting to witness this evocative ritual in the streets of old Bari , followed - obviously - by breakfast with a nice cup of hot chocolate , St. Nicholas Day , as well as the beginning of Christmas in Bari .

Some images of the tradition of Saint Nicholas

Mass on St. Nicholas Day December
Basilica San Nicola 6 December Bari

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