Italy's news in English
IN PHOTOS: Magical nativity scene lights up Italy’s Cinque Terre coast
The nativity scene overlooking Manarola, Cinque Terre, on December 14th. All photos: Marco Bertorello/AFP
AFP
news@thelocal.it
@thelocalitaly
15 December 2020
14:38 CET

One of the world's largest nativity scenes lights up the hilltop town of Manarola in Italy's famed Cinque Terre, joined this year by a statue honouring medics fighting the coronavirus crisis.
More than 150 figures depict shepherds and fishermen, sheep, camels and angels gathered around Mary, Joseph and the baby Jesus.
 
 
 
Lit up with eight kilometres of electricity cables, they are visible from the sea as well.
 
A new addition this year is a statue of a nurse with a heart next to it, a tribute to medical staff working to save lives throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
 
 
 
Watching the lights go on, local school teacher Elisabetta Colarusso said it was a welcome reminder of normal life.
 
“We need signs of hope and at least an appearance of normality,” she told AFP.
 
 
 
The area's nativity scene dates back to 1961, when local railway worker Mario Andreoli placed a cross onto the hill opposite the town to fulfil a wish by his dying father.
 
He had the idea of lighting it up with a car battery, and was delighted with the result.
 
He used iron bars and recycled materials to create many more figures over the years, each weighing up to 20kg.
 
At first, Andreoli, now 92, had to carry them up the steep hill himself, but now there's a whole team putting them up each Christmas.
 
All photos: Marco Bertorello/AFP
Share this article
Member comments
Become a Member to leave a comment.Or login here.
More news
Q&A: Your key questions about Italy’s coronavirus rules at Christmas
‘A different kind of Christmas’: What will be in Italy’s new coronavirus emergency decree?
Christmas in Italy: How have your plans changed this year?
Less shopping, more ‘spiritual reflection’: What will Christmas be like in Italy this year?
Unlucky Friday 17th – and other Italian superstitions to beware of
FOR MEMBERS
How Christmas dinner changes depending where you are in Italy
Six quirky Italian Christmas traditions you should know about
FOR MEMBERS
The words and phrases you’ll need to survive a Christmas in Italy
Related articles
‘This year will be small for sure’: How Italy’s foreign residents have changed their Christmas plans
Panettone or pandoro: Which is the best Italian Christmas cake?
IN PHOTOS: The empty streets of Venice illuminated for Christmas
Here’s how you can earn cashback on your Christmas shopping in Italy
The food and drink you need for an Italian Christmas feast
Noticeboard
29/11
Looking for long term rental in Rieti!!
24/11
Looking for a restaurant in Rome on New year’s eve
21/11
In Tuscany.
20/11
A Historic Beach House in Monterosso al Mare, Cinque Terre
15/11
Concessione fabriccato
View all notices
Post a new notice
The Local Europe AB
Vasagatan 10
111 20 Stockholm
Sweden
Privacy