During your stay in Il Melo e la Gatta you can take part to popular traditions and festivals of Aosta Valley.
Bataille de reines
One of the typical festivals of the Valle d’Aosta is the bataille de reines or combat de vaches. This is a folklore event that consists of the fight between pregnant cows at the end of which the ” reina di corne ” or queen of the horns will be elected. The breeds of cows most used in the fighting are the black spotted from Valle d’Aosta and the Hérens breed.
The Foire d’été (Summer Fair) is held every summer in Aosta. This exhibition of local handicrafts was born in 1969 to make known the local handicrafts production to anyone who visited the city. Among the over 500 stands there are some dedicated to carving, turning and wood carving, leather processing, the creation of flowers, wooden furniture, toys and agricultural tools.
Châteaux en musique
The castles of the Valle d’Aosta are the protagonists of Châteaux en musique, an important travelling music festival that, thanks to the combination of theatre, music and historical sites, offers exclusive and refined evenings to spectators. The event usually takes place in the parks of Saranno, in the castle La Mothe of Arvier ones and the castle Gamba of Châtillon, or in the rooms of the castles of Sarre, Verrès, Introd, Issogne, the castle Sarriod de La Tour of Saint-Pierre and the Castel Savoia of Gressoney-Saint-Jean and will immerse you in the fascinating atmospheres of the past.
Tor des Géants
If you love sport, you can also participate in the famous Tor des Géants, in Courmayeur¸ an endurance trail that takes place between the paths of the Valle d’Aosta, until you cross the Gran Paradiso National Park and the regional Mont Avic. This competition includes a prize for anyone who manages to complete the route: this race, which runs through 34 municipalities, is considered the most difficult trail in the world.
Antey and Gressan Apple Festival
The apple is one of the region’s favourite fruits, so much that you can attend the famous festival held in Gressan. The “Apple Festival” in Gressan takes place on the first Sunday in October, during which you can taste specialities prepared with different qualities of apple: jams, jellies, cider, fruit juices, tarts and cakes. The celebrations in Gressan also coincide with the competition that awards a prize to the best local production: a jury of experts evaluates the size, appearance and integrity of the apples in the competition.
Verrés Historical Carnival
Every year in Verrès there is a re-enactment of an event that happened back in 1450 with parades in antique costumes, and dancing evenings with dinner inside the ancient castle. The story tells that Catherine of Challant, along with her husband, arrived in Verrès where she dined at Reverend Pietro de Chissé. Then, when they arrived at the square to the sound of the drum and a piper, Catherine began dancing with the locals who acclaimed loudly: “Vive Introd et Madame de Challant“.