Hailed as "the only floating Nativity Scene in the world", the presepe in the small fishing village of Cesenatico in Emilia-Romagna is an annual tradition returning on the first Sunday of December. It is then that the boats of the town’s Marine Museum become the stage for the so-called Presepe della Marineria, which features 50 life-size statues inspired by the lives of ordinary people living in a fishing village.
Therefore, alongside the Holy Family and the shepherds, you will see fishermen, carpenters, puppeteers, children, musicians, and even a woman holding a piadina, the traditional flat bread of the area. The first statue to grace the presepe in 1986 when it was first set up was Saint James, the patron saint of Cesenatico. Each year, a new statue is added. Today, you can admire, among others, someone mending nets, driving a boat or selling fish.
The Nativity Scene becomes even more evocative at night when thousands of lights are reflected on the canal waters and bring the figures to life.
The Presepe della Marineria in Cesenatico is on display until January 6.
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