The Palio Horserace - The tradition

The Palio of Siena is one of the most famous horseraces in the world. Every year, thousands of visitors come to Siena to partecipate to this unique event. The Palio stands for the real soul of the city : the 17 quarters of the city dispute in the Piazza del Campo twice a year for  the victory of the race and they are the depositatories of the medieval traditions of the city, its economic, social and cultural life. The race is run twice a year : the 2nd of July in honour of the Virgin of Provenzano, and the 16th of August in honour of the Virgin of the Assunta. The party longs 4 days and the atmosphere of the city is magic, full of energy and lively.


During the first day of celebration there is a commission that decides the 10 horses that will run the race and then a lottery that determinate which horse run for which of the ten participants. The ring of the Piazza del Campo is covered by a compact special mix of sand and land. There are six proves before the main race to let the horse knowing better the trace and the noises of the people. All the proves are followed by lots of people, locals and tourists.