Cosenza welcomes Spring with a centuries old tradition, La Fiera di San Giuseppe or the Saint Joseph’s Fair. This outdoor market is one of the oldest and most important traditions in Cosenza and dates back hundreds of years ago to 1234 when it was first established by Frederick II of Swabia. It’s an event that residents of this city and neighbouring towns look forward to each and every year.
La Fiera di San Giuseppe isn’t like other weekly markets, it’s huge. To get an idea of the magnitude of this market, last year’s fair had in and around 520 stands which included products and merchants from all over Calabria as well as other parts of Italy.
This year’s fair begins on March 16th and will continue until March 19th (the saint day for St. Joseph). Usually the fair takes place in the old part of Cosenza however this year, the mayor of Cosenza has decided to move the fair. It will begin in the old part of the city and continue along Viale Parco (also known as Viale Giacomo Mancini), a long street that runs along Cosenza towards Rende (the neighbouring city).
Visitors to la fiera can expect to find just about everything: from local products by artisans to various types of plants to clay sculptures and wicker baskets. It’s also the best oppourtunity to pick up some delicious and traditional southern Italian foods.