The Living Nativity of Maranola
Each Christmas-time a Living Nativity scene, known as a Presepe Vivente, is re-enacted within the characteristic Medieval streets of Maranola. This tradition has taken place here in Maranola for the last 43 years. It is a wonderful community event. Throughout the narrow streets and alleys of the village the local people open up their cellars to the public. The cellars are beautifully decorated according to the scene they are depicting. There are numerous scenes depicting typical Italian village life of times gone by. The local folk, dressed in traditional costumes, demonstrate a wide range of old skills, trades and professions. Wandering through the streets there are also musicians who add to the charismatic atmosphere, playing ancient tunes on the typical instruments such as the zampogna and the concertina
Eventually the narrow streets will lead you to the actual Living Nativity Scene set in a stable. A local couple have been chosen to act out the roles of Mary and Joseph with their real baby as the newly born Jesus Christ. Depending on the date of the event they are visited by the shepherds, or the three wise men bearing their gifts or gold, frankincense and myrrh.
The Presepe Vivente can be seen in Maranola over the Christmas holidays. The event is held on several evenings, those of the 26th December, 1st January and 6th January. It is well work a visit. An excellent shuttle-bus service is provided to ferry visitors up to the old town from Maranola’s sports ground.