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Palio di Siena of August 16

Piazza del Campo with the districts towns

In Siena there is a tradition that goes on stage for over 500 years, able to excite an entire city and involve thousands of fans from all parts of Tuscany and beyond: the Palio di Siena.

The most awaited event of the year, an institution that since 1644 is example of folklore and passion of an entire city.

For this the Palio is not a mere tradition, but the tradition. History of the city, boasting of a population and glory for the contrada that wins the victory.

The Palio di Siena is divided into two competitions: the first opens its doors on the morning of 29 June in view of the "career of 2 July; the second on 13 August, to that of August 16.


Le Contrade and Duelists of the Palio

The Contrade of Siena are seventeen, Aquila, Bruco, Chiocciola, Civetta, Drago, Giraffa, Istrice, Leocorno, Lupa, Nicchio, Oca, Onda, Pantera, Selva, Tartuca, Torre, Valdimontone. However, at each Palio talking only ten, of which seven are the districts that do not have raced in the previous year and three those raffled.

Each Contrada in Siena is considered as a small State, each with its own Seat headed by the prior and possesses within his city, a church, called "oratory".


The race: from the entrance to the race

The Palio is a race equestre, a horse race that confronts the districts, each with its own Jockey. All Duelists are proceeding towards the "move" from Piazza del Campo, where the "Mossiere" issues with extracting the order of placement on the canape (rope that outlines the area of departure). Everything takes place in religious silence, until the tenth district enters the scene beginning the challenge. The victory is awarded to the first horse, which after three rounds in the square, each of 1000 metres, reaches the finish line without his Jockey, determining their victory anyway.


The prize is open to all

The Palio from Piazza del Campo and the trials of the days leading up to it, it's free. If you would prefer a more comfortable solution you can admire the race sitting in the stands for a fee. In this case, to purchase tickets, you must check with the palcaioli, ossi single antlers or managers to the owners of the apartments overlooking the square.

To more easily find parking if you arrive in Siena by car we recommend arriving well in advance.


Opening hours of evidence

The evidence in view of the Palio take place starting from 3 days before the race.

  • 8.20 hours – notice of commencement rehearsal
  • 8.40 a.m. – the track where race horses is unobstructed
  • Hours 9.00 – horses come out of the Courtyard of the Mayor

Shooting in the afternoon from 18.15 at 19.15 in the same way in the morning


Timetable of the Palio of August 16

The day of the Palio begins after lunch

  • Ore 14.50-first notice of race start
  • 15.20 hours-according to notice race start
  • 16.10 hours-the track where race horses is unobstructed
  • Ore 16.45-Squad police on horseback
  • 16.50 hours-Entrance Procession in the "field"
  • Hours 19.00-horses come out of the Courtyard of the Mayor


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