8th – 17th September
Parco Urbano Giorgio Bassani, Via Riccardo Bacchelli n. 103
Every day 8am – 9.30pm
Entrance: Monday to Friday free, Saturday & Sunday, 5 euro per person (under 12 free)
Free parking and free shuttle bus service.
This is the most important hot air balloon festival in Italy and one of the most important ballooning events in Europe. It is certainly an exciting week in Ferrara for the children, who love watching the colourful balloons take off and spotting the unusual shaped ones as they fly over the city.
They take off early in the morning at about 7.30 am and then for a second time at around 5 pm onwards. Visit the website below for the programme of events each day.
Hot air balloon rides need to be booked well in advance but for those who prefer their feet to stay firmly on the ground the “Night Glow” is truly an impressive sight and takes place on Saturdays at 9.00 p.m. Hot air balloons are inflated and glow in the night whilst music plays in the background.
The park also hosts a variety of publicity stands, demonstrations, sport and dance exhibitions, fairground attractions, the Italian Air force exhibition area, a market and places to eat. There is also la “Città Magica” – a Renaissance area with flag- waving competitions, Renaissance dancing, craft stalls and restaurants.
For more information on times and events
Email: email@example.com Tel: 0532 900713
The easiest way to get to the park is on foot or by bike. However, if you have to come by car it is better to park inside the city walls in one of the free car parks or park at the sports centre CUS and walk. You can also take a free shuttle bus, especially when at the weekends the main road to the park will be blocked off.
Giostra del Monaco – Medieval festival continues from last month
25th August – 3rd September
Viale IV Novembre (along the walls near the station)
This Medieval festival has just started and continues until 3rd September. It stages lots of re-enactments from Ferrara’s past and has a whole host of exciting events to watch. There are also places to eat and market stalls selling Medieval-themed arts and crafts.
Sunday 24th September
Meeting point/ start of the race: Piazza Ariostea
This is a 10 mile running race for adults which starts in the city and goes along the city walls into the countryside around Ferrara.
For those who are interested in taking part it is possible to register on-line or at various sports centres in Ferrara by Friday 22nd September. There is a small enrolment fee to pay.
There is also a family walk & running race and a children’s race. If you would like to take part adults do not need a medical certificate, but children need to show their ‘Libretto Verde’ health card (which each child receives when he/her is registered with a doctor) to take part in the family and/or children’s race. It is always better to check the rules and regulations on the official website beforehand.
Once enrolled, on Saturday 23rd from 4 pm – 7 pm or on Sunday 24th from 7.30 am – 9.15 am in Piazza Ariostea, you can then collect your official registration number.
On the day of the race the programme is:
7.30 am Stands open in Piazza Ariostea
9.10 am Children’s race starts
9.30 am The 10 mile race and the 4 mile “Walk & Run” race start
10.30 am Prize ceremony begins
“EuropAFerrara” – Fantastic Europen Market
Viale Alfonso d’Este
22nd, 23rd and 24th September
9.30 am – Midnight
The European Market is held this year in Viale Alfonso D’Este. If you can’t find it just follow the wonderful smell of Italian focaccia, Dutch waffles or Spanish paella cooking and discover a variety of crafts, English fine bone china, jewelry, flowers and other European products. Soak up the atmosphere and enjoy a German beer and dinner in the evening at one of the many restaurants and bars set up around the piazza, or for a quieter experience visit the market early morning.
ESTATE BAMBINI – Summer party for children
Notte Bianca dei Bambini
5 p.m. – Midnight
This summer party opens on 1st September with lots of workshops, music and entertainment taking place around the historical city centre. On this day all the activities and workshops are free but you may need to book some activities in advance. Go to the official website: www.estatebambini.it to see the full programme of events beforehand. There will be a useful information stand which opens in Piazza Trento Trieste from 5 p.m. – 9.30 p.m. Here you can get a map of the city to find out what is taking place, when and where. Below, you can find just a few example of events taking place on 1st September:
Guided tour of the Castle (6 years +)
4.45 p.m., 5.30 p.m. & 6.15 p.m.
Please book by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org with name and age of child.
Piazza Trento Trieste, 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.
A games area dedicated to movement and balance
Mini Ludobus dell’Isola
Chiostro di San Paolo, 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.
A special area dedicated to children from 0 – 4 years
Museo di Storia Naturale
5 p.m. – 7 p.m., (for 4 years +)
Lots of exciting activities are taking place in the Natural History Museum
Music Workshop for children (0 – 5 years) and parents
Chiostro di San Paolo, 5.30 p.m.
CIRCOLUNA – a show
Sala della Musica, 5.30 p.m. & 7. 30 p.m.
A fun show using lights and shadows. If you would like to participate you need to send an email to: email@example.com indicating names, surnames and how many children and adults would like to participate from 28th – 31st August
Estate dei bambini in Piazza
5th – 10th September, from 4.30 p.m. – 10.30 p.m.
Piazza XXIV Maggio (“Tessera Familiare” compulsory)
The summer party continues from 5th – 10th September in Piazza XXIV Maggio. In this enormous piazza there are theatre performances, “a swap shop”, dressing-up games, story time, arts and crafts, a small bar and much, much more.
To take part in all these activities you need to buy a family ticket called a “Tessera Familiare”. It costs 15 euro which allows all your family to take part in any of these activities during the whole five days (independent of how many children you have). It also allows you to go to the Festabà theatre performances below. If you do not think that you would return each day then you could buy a single day family card which costs 10 euro.
This card can be bought from the information stand on 1st September in Piazza Trento Trieste but also from 5th September onwards at the entrance to Piazza XXIV Maggio when you arrive.
Festabà – Theatre Performances for children at the Sala Estense
4th – 8th September, Piazza Municipale, at 9.15 pm
(“Tessera Familiare” needed)
4th September – Mr Bloom Sognatore Specializzato (mime & music for 3yrs +)
5th – Racconto alla Rovescia (for 5yrs +)
6th – Snow White, the true story (for 6yrs +)
7th – Il Fiore Azzurro (for 7yrs +)
8th – L’Ultima Cena
Ancient Jewish Book Festival
16th & 17th September
Historical City Centre
Two days of debates, meetings, workshops, shows and concerts taking place around the old Jewish Ghetto area of Ferrara. It is a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the history of Jews in Europe and in Ferrara. You can try Jewish cuisine, visit the Ghetto area of Ferrara with a guide and learn about the Jewish culture. This particular events focuses on some Jewish-themed books which have been written over the years and some of the authors themselves will be present at these book presentations.
MEIS – National Museum of Italian Judaism and the Shoah
Via Piangipane, 81
Tuesdays – Fridays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m & 3 – 5 p.m. (1st April – 30th September)
Tuesdays – Thursdays, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. & 3 – 5 p.m., Fridays 10 – 3 p.m., (1st September – 31st March)
Sundays – 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
There is a very important National Museum of Italian Judaism in Ferrara which is really worth a visit. There is also a local Jewish Museum in Via Mazzini, 95, which used to be part of the Ghetto area in Ferrara. It is small but gives a very interesting insight to Jews living in Ferrara. It is temporarily closed but will re-open soon. It gives tours in the mornings starting at 10 a.m.
Antiques & Craft Market
3rd & 4th September
Piazza Castello & Piazza Savonarola
Now that the summer holidays have finished a variety of markets return to Ferrara. This antiques and craft market is held on the first weekend of each month in the city centre and is open all day until about 7 p.m.
Friday Farmer’s Food Market
Piazetta Donatori di Sangue
8 a.m. – 1 p.m.
This is a nice market which sells local farm products. You can find all sorts of delicious food as well as wine, flowers and plants.
Internazionale a Ferrara
29th September – 1st October
A series of free lectures about current affairs, problems in the world and politics held around the city centre by some of the world’s leading journalists and authors. To find out more about times and places go to: www.internazionale.it/festival
9th September – 14th October on Saturdays
Departure from Manifattura dei Marinati, Comacchio
This is an interesting guided tour by minibus around the lagoons of Comacchio to see these beautiful birds before they migrate. It is a fantastic opportunity not to be missed.
Tickets cost: 13 euro for adults and 10 euro for children under 12
Times and meeting places are organized at the time of booking. For further information:
Website: www.podeltatourism.it or email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 0533 81302
Mesola – On the Trail of the Mesola Deer
Saturdays, Sundays, and national holidays
Tours start at 9.30 a.m., 11 a.m., 2.30 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Mentioned in our Top Ten Historical Gems, the Mesola Woods Nature Reserve is an ancient, protected woods and it is an important part of Ferrara’s heritage. It is not possible for the public to access these woods, so when the local tourist board organizes special tours we always mention them on our website as it is a unique opportunity to visit them. These guided tours take a small group of people by electric car right into the heart of the woods to see the Mesola deer and particular habitats unique to this area.
Tickets cost: 10 euro for adults and 7 euro for children under 12
Website: www.podeltatourism.it or email info@podeltatourism or telephone: 05333 81302
Food Festivals Continue…(Le Sagre)
Ferrara – Sagra del Pinzino e dell’ Arrosticino
Centro Sociale Rivana Graden, Via Gaetano Pesci, 181
14th – 24th September, at 6. 30 p.m.
Pinizini (a type of fried bread) served with different luncheon meats. Spare ribs, chicken nuggets, beans, olives, cheeses and kebabs.
Malalbergo (between Ferrara & Bologna) – Sagra dell’Ortica (Nettles Festival)
1st, 2nd & 3rd September, at 7 p.m. (On Sundays at 12 and 7 p.m.)
Lasagna, tortellini and risotto made with nettles followed by roast meats, meatballs and a variety of vegetables.
Sant’Agostino – Sagra del Tartufo (Truffle festival)
Viale Europa, 37, at 7.30 pm (On Sundays at 12.00 and 7.30 pm)
31st August – 11th September
A savoury truffle-filled menu including truffle lasagna and savoury truffle-flavoured pancakes.
Stellata – Sagra dell’Anatra (Duck)
Area ex Cavagion, Via Gransci, 293/D
31st August – 10th September, at 7 pm
A selection of meat dishes including a delicious, typical pasta called “Pappardelle” with a duck sauce.
Vigarano Pieve – Sagra della Pera (Pear)
Area Parrocchiale, Via Mantova, at 7.30 pm
21st – 24th & 28th & 30th September & 1stOctober
If you have been into the Ferrarese countryside you will have noticed all the rows of fruit trees typical of this area. This food festival in Vigarano Pieve has an imaginative and mouth-watering pear menu and is well-worth a visit! Try pear and truffle lasagne, pear Tortelli, meat dishes with pear and brandy and of course pear ice-cream!
Mirabello -Sagra della Cotoletta Mirabellese
15th, 16th, 17th & 22nd 23rd & 24th September
Sports Field, Via Belvedere, 64, at 7 pm (Sunday only at lunchtime 12pm)
Milan is famous for its “Cotoletta” a pork or veal steak covered in breadcrumbs but Mirabello has made its own version for you to try!
Francolino – La Sagra di Santa Liberata
14th, 15th, 16th, 17th & 21st 22nd, 23rd, 24th
Via Calzolai, behind the main church (there are no times given so we are guessing that the restaurant will open at around 7 p.m.)
This traditional Ferrarese food festival is only a bike ride away from Ferrara. From school, head towards Malborghetto on Via Calzolai using the cycle path, which will take you all the way to Francolino.