Christmas holidays are closer and closer, and it's time to think about gifts for family and friends.
The open-air markets are an opportunity to find special items, and to visit the city with the right calm, perhaps enjoying a hot chocolate or a tea in the relaxed atmosphere of the Christmas holidays or alternating with one of the many concerts that take place everywhere. In Lucca and in the surrounding area the calendar of the markets from crafts to gastronomy, to vintage, is dense and varied.
Preview in Chiasso Barletti, the narrow alley that everyone admires, the nose up to see the skyline of the roofs that almost touch eachother. At Christmas, the alley turns into Chiasso di Natale. From November 24, in addition to traditional shops, there will be themed shops where they can find decorations for the house and for the Christmas tree, objects and small Christmas gifts.
The craft markets time start in the small piazza San Giusto. On the weekends of December 1 and December 8 and December appointment with Arti e Mestieri, the historic Christmas Arts and Crafts market of Lucca, in Christmas edition. Among all the objects, strictly "handmade" in editions limited by small artisans with traditional and alternative materials. With the occasion, a jump to the nearby square of the book is a must.
Knitters, carpenters, painters and jewelers gather in Piazza Cittadella, Piazza dei Cocomeri, via di Poggio on December 7, 8 and 9 for the market art and hobbiests in San Paolino. On December 8th at 4:30 pm, the Market will be the scenery of the show "Un canto di Natale" by the duo of "La dama e l'Unicorno" with Christmas songs and entertainment for adults and children.
Botteghe e Dimore is the traveling artisan market that, on the weekends of 7 to 16 December, brings together its group of master craftsmen from many parts of Italy under the Loggia of Palazzo Pretorio, in Piazza San Michele. Together they propose their work to the large public attentive to the preservation of ancient crafts and aware of the great value of "handmade" and the high quality that only artisanal production can provide.
Some inspired by their children, some who are stubborn to not give up their talent, the "artisan mothers" offer truly unique and refined objects at their Mamme Artiste market. And what for artists! The beautiful Piazza San Frediano houses large rag dolls and ceramics with intriguing colors, jewelry and pret-a-porter dresses. Each piece is unique in this original market of the Immaculate Conception on 8 and 9 December.
Gastronomy, clothing, toys, jewelry and bric a brac is what can be found at the traditional Christmas Market in Piazza Napoleone, for the entire period of the Christmas holidays, December 8, day of the Immaculate, January 6, day of ' Epiphany. On the square the ice skating rink and the horse carousel are accompanied to the market and in Piazza Napoleone, from 11 to 27 December at the Christmas Market of the Red Cross you can buy objects that finance solidarity projects.
Where Via Fillungo ends, beyond the porta di Borgo, begins the market Artigianato ai Borghi. On the 15th and 16th and 22nd, December 23rd, the artisan market of the northern area. The occasion is also perfect for a toast in one of the many trendy clubs in the city: a choice of excellent selections of craft beers, sweets and wines from all over Italy, excellent coffees.
Never fails to hunt for the original gift the montly Antiques Market, this month on December 15th and 16th, where more than among the counters of the more than 200 exhibitors the expert eye will not miss out on some valuable items exposed among as many as in the best markets of this type. Jewelry ornaments, toys, old work tools, antique and vintage objects, the gift is assured and also the evocative atmosphere that this great market offers.
On the same days, Christmas Market weekend at the Atelier Ricci with the Order of Malta. Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 December, Palazzo Cittadella in via Burlamacchi, in the premises of the Atelier Ricci. In the open market from 10:00 to 19:00 you can find gift ideas of some selected Lucchesi producers and artisans, books, wines, gastronomic products, essences and perfumes, clothing for adults and children, costume jewelry.
At the height of the parties and for the gifts of the last moment on December 21st, 22nd, 23rd there is ArtisticaMente, the market of arts and crafts and works of art of Corso Garibaldi.
Objects made by hand and with great care and, at Villa Bottini on the 21st, 22nd and 23rd December, Christmas in support of RiEco il Natale shows the market of artisanal products of recycling and reuse with numerous cultural and social collateral events such as GiftDay ( The collection of gifts for family houses), the involvement of numerous social cooperatives and many other fund-raising associations.
At the Real Collegio of Lucca, behind the great Basilica of San Frediano, returns Desco - flavors and knowledge of Lucca, the traditional market of typical products accompanied by a rich program of cultural activities and show cooking that opens a door to the world of local food and wine and, from November 30th to December 9th, on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, accompanies us to the debut of the Christmas holidays.
And after many local products on December 15th and 16th the pecorino give way to tome, chestnut honey to heather honey, gianduiotti to herb cake, sangiovese to dolcetto, risotto to tordelli. Here comes an "exotic" note for gourmands at the Piedmont regional market, from Piedmont to Lucca, in piazza Santa Maria.
For lovers of local products to taste just picked, Mercoledì Bio is the weekly market of local products of short supply chain inserted in the Slow Food market. In December it will be held on wednsday 5.12.19, from 2.30 pm to evening. You can find local and seasonal fruits and vegetables, the freshly pressed oil and the new wine, with the qale prepare generous Christmas baskets. All strictly organic.
Just outside Lucca, crossing the village Giannotti you reach the Farmers Market 1, 8, 15, 22 the historic market of producers and agricultural products of the Lucca countryside in the nineteenth-century market structures of the Forum Boario, near the San Quirico pote and the fluvial park .
(www.turismo.lucca.it - foto R. Giomi)