Blog - Cefalù - Palazzo Villelmi

“Ntinna a Mari”: What is it?

On the 6th of August Cefalù celebrates the SS. Salvatore, to whom the people of Cefalù feel extreme devotion. Among the various events held during the festivities, one in particular attracts the curiosity of many:  ‘Ntinna a mari‘.

An ancient recreational event in which 17 boys and men all from local fishing families take part. The participants have to walk on a 16-metre-long wooden beam, fixed to the pier and made smooth with animal fat, the aim being to catch the flag placed on its end.

This kind of event has a twofold purpose: to celebrate the Saint, but also to entertain and involve the public, which is why some inhabitants take advantage of the occasion to wear unsuitable or even ridiculous clothing.

The ‘Ntinna a mari is an integral part of Cephaludese popular culture and highlights the typical values that characterise Sicily: religiosity, brotherhood, warmth, cheerfulness and respect for traditions, a show to be experienced!

  • Photo by Cinzia Marsala