Thrilling time travel

The oldest Republic in the world and its history are yours to discover! The medieval Old Town of San Marino, with its iconic three Towers, crenelated walls and narrow streets, is the perfect location to breathe the atmosphere of a distant period in time. Every nook and cranny are sure to make you feel as if you’re being carried back to the days of kings and castles.

Have you ever heard about the San Marino Crossbowmen Federation? A true flagship of San Marino’s history and culture, the group was founded in 1956 to restore an ancient tradition dating back to the 14th century that was linked to crossbow tournaments. Along with marksmen, we have flag-throwers, whose skill in throwing the big multi-colored flags always steals the show, musicians, who accompany the historical parade and give every performance rhythm with the sound of drums and bugles, and pageants, which showcase historical costumes of great elegance. The Federation is well known and appreciated far beyond the borders of this small Republic, having performed in many cities in Italy, the rest of Europe, and around the world over the years. Its mission is not only keeping alive this ancient tradition but also promoting the image of San Marino and its deepest values, such as freedom and peace, which its citizens cherish deeply.

If this piqued your curiosity, make sure you don’t miss the most important national holiday, the Feast of Saint Marinus and the Foundation of the Republic Day. Every September 3rd, the Patron Saint and the Foundation’s anniversary of its inception in 301 A.D. are celebrated with an intense program of both institutional ceremonies and folkloric events. According to tradition, the Big Crossbow Tournament takes place in the afternoon: on this occasion, representatives of the nine municipalities (aka “Castles”) of the Republic compete in their traditional costumes for the title of National Champion. Waves of visitors and citizens gather in the Cava dei Balestrieri to attend the exciting competition and cheer for the most expert shooters.

Another event that should be on every history lover’s list is the Medieval Days of the Republic of San Marino: four summer days of shows, parades, and historical pageants during which you can really dive into the past and walk alongside knights jugglers and court ladies in the Old Town. With its Middle Age campsites, San Marino becomes the perfect Middle Age location, making you question whether you are actually living in the third millennium or one far in the past.

Check out to find out everything you need to know before you start your journey back in time in San Marino!

See a beautiful display by San Marino's flag-throwers
See a beautiful display by San Marino’s flag-throwers, ©@visitsanmarino.

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