Experiencing Italy’s Best Spring & Harvest Festivals

Friends cheers with glasses of red wine

By Anne McCarthy

Springtime is in the air, and that means that there are some incredible spring festivals on the horizon, especially in Italy. Author Henry James perhaps best noted Italy’s springtime allure, remarking, “Everything about Florence seems to be colored with a mild violet, like diluted wine.” Mild violets, bright pinks, rich oranges, and bright greens abound in spring in Italia.

Italy in the spring is such a treat, not only because of the blooming flowers and fun festivals, but at this time of year, temperatures are warming up, the sun is peaking out more and more, and outside dining is at its peak perfect state (not too cold, not too hot).

A couple in Rome, Italy

If you’re visiting Italy soon, visit us at Fat Tire Tours! We have tour operations in Rome, Florence, and Milan. Need help choosing the perfect tour? Don’t hesitate to give a shout and get in touch! You can also check out Italy tours at the city pages: Fat Tire Tours Rome, Fat Tire Tours Florence, Fat Tire Tours Milan.

Italy is a notoriously delicious place, from its pasta to its gelato to its wine and beyond! Consider booking one of our tasty food-related tours, like our Rome Pasta Making Class, our Florence food tours and wine tastings, and our Private Milan Food Tour.

A group of cyclists pose for a photo alongside the river in Rome, Italy

To soak up even more of Italy, check out the country’s different spring festivals and medieval harvest festivals. Here are some notable festivals to explore on your next visit to this gorgeous country.

Monterosso Lemon Festival

Every year in May, in Monterosso in Northern Italy in the province of La Spezia, the town will become fragrant with the divine smell of fresh lemons, and the bright citrus fruit will appear just about everywhere.

A bunch of lemons stacked on top of each other

This time of year is the peak season for lemons to become fully ripe, and so in Monterosso, you can celebrate this! At the festival, there’s an open-air market with a variety of lemon-related goods, and the theme of lemons can be observed throughout the town. Make lemonade out of these literal juicy lemons, and go celebrate this fruit with the locals!

Infiorata Festival

If you’re a flower lover and have a green thumb, you do not want to miss Italy’s Infiorata Festival in Noto, Sicily, starting May 17, 2024. This “collection of celebrations” honors the Italian tradition of making carpets from flowers.

Two roses in pink, orange and yellow with dew on their petals

Infiorata in Italian means “decorate with flowers,” and so that may give you some indication of the vibe of this springtime festival. Complete with Italian food, marching bands, joyful music, and bacchanal celebrations, you’re going to love this lively festival. Some of its traditions date back to the 1770s, and the flower displays at this festival will boggle the mind. Come see Italy in bloom at the Infiorata Festival!

Tuscan Medieval Fairs

Are you the type of person who would give anything to be a fly on the wall in King Arthur’s court? Well, then you simply must go to one of the medieval fairs in Tuscany, like Florence’s Festa Medievale a Malmantile – Lastra a Signa, which is held in the medieval hamlet of Malmantile. This festival is held on May 25-26, and June 1-2.

And just south of Arezzo, in Castiglion Fiorentino, you’ll find the Festa Medievale Bianco Azzurra – Castiglion Fiorentino, which is held at the end of May and early June.


Italy is, of course, known for––among other things––its amazing wines. From April 14 – April 17, 2024, the annual wine fair Vintaly will take place. This fun, boozy festival highlights global wine sellers and their various offerings.

A glass of red & white wine with small bites

Many people come specifically for the wine-tasting sessions and tasting experiences. With a wide array of wines from different regions of Italy, attendees will love the experience of exploring new wines dancing on their palette. There are also chefs and tasty treats here to pair with your wine.

Sposalizio del Mare Festival in Venice in May

This historical Venetian ceremony dates back many centuries. It translates to the “Marriage of the Sea” ceremony, and it’s a grand event that takes place during the last weekend of May in Venice. Sposalizio del Mare honors the maritime significance of the city of Venice, and it was first celebrated by throwing a gold ring into the Adriatic Sea.

Venice at dusk

Unesco explains how these festivities honor two major moments in the history of Venice: “The first is Doge Pietro Orseolo II’s rescue of Dalmatian residents from persecution around the year 1000. The second is the signing of the 1177 peace treaty which put a stop to the battle between the Pope and the Venetian Republic. By tradition, the Venetian Doge would sail his state barge – the Bucintoro – and throw a gold ring into the water. However, nowadays, the mayor of Venice assumes this role in the annual spectacle.”

In 1965, the ceremony was resurrected by the city of Venice, with the city’s mayor traditionally throwing a gold ring into the sea. Today, this ceremony is a fun, celebratory occasion to mark Venice’s unique relationship with the waters surrounding it. Stunning rowboats appear in the water and form a procession that rows from St. Mark’s Square to the Port of St Nicoló.

Are you a water lover? Check out our article on Experiencing Rome & Florence by Boat Cruise to learn how to sate your love of Italy and water adventures all in one!

Anne McCarthy
 is the Editor in Chief of the Fat Tire Tours Blog. She is a contributing writer to the BBC, The Washington Post, The Guardian, Variety, Wired, and many more. She splits her time between the U.S. and Europe.

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A family by the eiffel tower.