The longest and the most beautiful day you’ve ever experienced!
The Mass at aurora
At 6 am.
In the Cathedral
The Saint is leaving Cathedral
At about 7 am.
At the Cathedral
Note: Try to arrive in advance, at least at 6:30 am at the latest. Even better, attend the mass. Otherwise, you won’t get the best view spots 🙂
Note2: The prayer you will hear the most is the Saint’Agatha Anthem. Here are the lyric.
In this is, how it feels like, when you are inside the cathedral:
The long circle procession
Starts at 7 am. And ends in the morning of the following day. Yes, it’s a loooong day. Get ready!
The procession leaves the main square trough the Uzeda gate and goes towards the train station. Than it goes back to the city center and goes up the Via Cappuccini street. After that it enters in the Via Plebiscito and goes around until it reaches the fish market from the other side. Then back to the Cathedral and you back to your bed exhausted.
You can have a look at the map below:
You can read more about the most important moments of the 4th February bellow:
Fireworks at “Carmine” (Carlo Alberto square)
No one knows but usually it’s at around midday or so.
In Piazza Alberto Square (the big one where the main market is held every day)
Going up the Via Cappuccini
To be determined. Usually in the afternoon. In past years it was between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., depending on the velocity of the procession
In Via Cappuccini
Note: This is one of the most spectacular events on February 4th. You can see the procession literally flowing up the street if you stand at the cross next to Saint’Agathas prison. Be there on time, otherwise you risk not seeing anything (crowdy).
Meeting the Saint inside the Sant’Agata La Vetere church
Immediately after the Via Cappuccini part
Inside the Sant’Agata La Vetere church
Note: After all the rush, this is a very peaceful event with chants, music and prayers. It’s also a perfect opportunity to take a picture of the fercolo from a short distance.
Candeloras in Via Plebiscito
Whiles the Saint is inside the church, all the candeloras are parked at the beginning of the Via Plebiscito and the carriers are having dinner and resting.
It’s a perfect opportunity to take pictures of the candeloras because they are all in line and lit and beautiful!
The party at ATM
This moment is unique because during all the procession days, the music is banned. This is the only place where you can taste a bit of that contagious vibe of the candeloras and their bands. The Canedloras enter one by one inside the depository (a bit after the restaurants) and make a “dance”.
The stop at the Vittorio Emanuele hospital
The procession stops at the hospital at about 11 p.m. to greet and bless the hospitalized people.
Risorgimento and Palestro square
In the middle of the night, so night that is almost becoming day, the best of the festival happens. The festival inside the San Cristoforo quarter which has more devotees than any other one. Here, you’ll see thousands of people dressed in white, often terribly tired and sleepy, waiting for their Saint. There is nothing comparable to this atmosphere.
There are big fireworks when the procession reaches Piazza Risorgimento and then Piazza Palestro (this is usually around midnight but no one can determine an exact time in advance, it can easily be at 2 or 3 a.m.).
‘A Calata da marina
Usually in the early morning of the 5th. The candeloras pass one or two hours before the Saint
Under the arches between the fish market and Piazza Alcalà
What is going on?
This is the essence of Sicilian “disorganized organized chaos” which somehow always works out. The candeloras and the procession with the relic cart must pass under the arches, which requires dismantling of some parts of the cart and of some candeloras and reassembling them afterwards. It’s of course, accompanied by crying, swearing, shouting and general chaos.
The Saint enters the cathedral
No one knows. Usually by midnight but can be later. In past years it was at about 5 a.m.
At the Cathedral.
These two days are the culmination of the festival. You can have a rest on the 5th until the afternoon and then GO again! You live just once!