Thursday, August 16th in Piazza del Campo, Siena, 10 “contrade” will challenge for the second time in the Palio of the Assumption.
The Palio is the most important event in Siena, taking place on July 2 and August 16 every year.
In the Palio the various Sienese “contrade”, areas in which the city is divided, challenge in other in a passionate horse race in the heart of the city in the Piazza del Campo.
Siena is currently divided into 17 Contrade Siena: Eagle, Caterpillar, Snail, Owl, Dragon, Giraffe, Hedgehog, Leocorno, Lupa, Shell, Goose, Wave, Pantera, Selva, Tortoise, Tower, Ram. Each Contrada has its own unique emblem and colors and represents an area of the city.
The Palio horse race has its origins in the distant past, with historical records indicating horse races in Siena already taking place in the 6th century.
The Palio is much more than a simple event for the Sienese, it actually is a large part of their lives since the time of their birth. Each person belongs to a Contrada, participates in the life of the Contrada and the organization of the Palio throughout the entire year. The Sienese live the Palio with great passion and you’ll certainly be able to see this if you have the chance to attend the wonderful event.