San Gimignano Photostory

All Saints Day Market ‘Of Sacred Food’ in Pictures.

Words and Pictures by Amanda Atkins of Siena House Tuscany

A popular visit for guests coming to this area is the Sienese town of San Gimignano, it’s certainly one of our favourites.  It was a while since we had been and so on a bright November first we headed out to visit San Gimignano… and found a very special Tuscan event in action: The Festa del Cibo Sacro festival of Sacred Food an event over 3 days showcasing traditional and organic food and crafts from Tuscany along with music and street theatre.  Translating from the Italian information:

It is the food that expresses and promotes biodiversity, that sustains organic farmers and the health of the people who know about it. It is food that has its roots in tradition and that can allow us a sustainable future. It is the food that takes care of the ground and can make us healthy: Three days around food and traditional games for children with tasting of food wine and beer that is organic, street artists and musicians, a big market of organic farm produce and Tuscan eco artisans in the extraordinary squares of San Gimignano.

Image showing a street in San gimignano tuscany with people walking the towers are visible in the distance
Walking up to the main square
Image showing a display of t shirts at a shop in san gimignano in tuscany
Shopping on the way up
image showing a market under white covers in the main square at san gimignano medieval city in tuscany
Up top in the main square
image showing medieval buildings in san gimignano in tuscany one tower and a series of house fronts all with arch topped gothic looking windows
Bluest blue skies
Image showing the market on all saints day in san gimignano tuscany there is a man wearing a flat cap with long red dreadlocks pulling a pint from a pump out in the open at a market stand there is a sign reading organic beer
Organic Artisan Beers !
Image showing a woman playing a didgeridoo and another playing saxophone this is a performance in the main square at san gimignano on all saints day in tuscany
A lively event with music
Image showing a building in honey coloured stone with lots of windows over 4 floors arched doors at the bottom and a few people market stalls in the foreground and deep blue sky this is the all saints day market at san gimignano
Cobalt Tuscan skies
Image showing honey coloured buildings in an italian town square san gimignano tuscany and a busy market below under white shades with people in the foreground
The many towered city
image showing a sicilian puppeteers puppet little old man with red trousers standing at a miniature radio mike in hand adjusting the station
Entertaining and touching puppet theatre
Image showing a puppet on strings a man with white hair holding a microphone red trousers and cream coat people in the background street performer at all saints day market in san gimignano
Our favourite performance was this little guy


image showing a string puppet belonging to street theatre performer from sicily at the all saints day market in san gimignano tuscany
The end of the show
Image showing a tuscan city san gimignano the main square under blue skies with four square towers rising up from the roof tops
The Manhattan in Tuscany
Image showing a man with something not unlike a guitar performing at an outside event he has two drums nearby resting on another instrument made of wood one of the alternative acts at the all saints day market in san gimignano
Inventive musician
Image showing two men chatting at a market stall one Allan Stewart wears a panama hat and check shirt they are both at the all saints market in san gimignano there are wooden toys at the stall where they talk
Malvin with the charming toy maker


Image showing a hand made wooden toy by ala stewart a large fish and next to it two hippos the toys are at a stall at the san gimignano all saints day market
Alan Stewart makes intriguing jointed animals
Image showing a wooden mobile hanging from the roof of a market stall its a seagull in white and the words wooden toys are written in italian on the marquee
We the major part of our Christmas gifts from Alan
Image showing the two tallest towers side by side with cobalt blue sky background
San Gimignano ‘s tallest
image showing towers of an italian medieval hill town san gimignano lit by the afternoon sun on their honey coloured bricks
Views from the market
Image of the main square at san gimignano two men talking in the foreground a small crowd gathered in the mid ground market stalls visible in the distant with medieval houses
Chatting with Alan
Image showing postcard racks in the famous tuscan hill town of san gimignano pictures on the cards are of florence the palio in siena and the manhattan in tuscany skyline view of the towers of san gimignano
Don’t forget to send a postcard !
image showing men standing at a tuscan market food stall this is a specialist food market in san gimignano on the occasion of all saints day the men are examining salami type products
Authentic and delicious Tusan produce
Image showing building in the centre of an italian town san gimignano medieval tower town windows are pointed arch topped with brown surrounds and buildings constructed in brick and stone
Late afternoon…
Image showing castellated tops of buildings in an italian town square arches at ground level and market stalls the light is low level and the sun setting behind the buildings this is san gimignano tuscany
Medieval City
Image showing detail of a centre square building in manhattan in tuscany town san gimignano pale stone blocks and boarded window
Walls of San Gimignano
Image showing 4 musicians in the playing dixie music in san gimignano main square on all saints day
The Old Florence Dixie Band
Image showing a man wearing a boater hat white shirt and deep grey waistcoat playing saxophone against the backdrop of a wall in san gimignano tuscany
The Old Florence Dixie Band

A highlight of our afternoon in San Gimignano was most definitely the music of the Old Florence Dixie Band hearing them play made the market atmosphere.

Image showing 5 musicians four men and one woman playing against the backdrop of a tuscan wall built in stone at san gimignano all saints day market
The Old Florence Dixie Band
Image showing an italian dixie band three men with boater hats one with banjo one trumpet and one saxophone all with white shirts and waistcoats playing in san gimignano town square
The Old Florence Dixie Band
Image showing the central square in san gimignano with white roofed market stalls and lots of people the honey coloured city walls bathed in the light of the setting sun at top left
Getting cold as the sun goes down
Image showing quite a lot of people playing traditional wooden games at tables in a square in san gimignano tuscany
Traditional wooden toys at work !

Very interesting (watching and taking part) was a smaller square set up with intriguing traditional hand made games provided by Il Tarlo translated to mean ‘The Woodworm’ cultural association

Getting busier as the sun set
Image showing a man playing steel drums and a woman standing drinking water from a bottle with a didgeridoo resting close by there is also a saxophone in the foreground people pass in the background dressed up for winter and there are tuscan walls and windows fo san gimignano visible in the background
Varied music and attractions

About Siena House

Siena House is a very different place to stay in Tuscany. A truly boutique hotel in a great touring location, perfectly positioned for Southern Tuscany’s most wanted wines, landscapes and hilltowns – or for doing nothing at all.  Peaceful and private, this is a gated property with large saltwater pool, beautiful rooms and views run by a British couple.

Siena House: Lovely old Tuscany on the outside
Something unexpected within


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