Live Nativity Scenes In Sicily

Many towns in Sicily annually create elaborate live nativity scenes like this one I saw in 2019 in Custonaci (Trapani Province). These dioramas featuring townspeople acting out iconic moments and everyday activities from past times create a sense of wonder. Presepe Vivente are a reason to visit Sicily during Christmas. 

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Beth Caruso says:

    What are in these baskets? Looks like the most important agricultural products of Sicily. And, why are they in the Nativity scene? Thank you.

    1. Allison Scola says:

      Great questions Beth! You can read more about the baskets here:

      And here:


      The products displayed in the nativity scene are seasonal and regional products: pomegranate, oranges, lemons, nuts, chestnuts, ricotta, primo sale pecorino cheese, bread, tuma cheese, and other products I don’t recognize.

      They are in the scene because it’s traditional to share the bounty of the region where the nativity is displayed… But also, I venture to guess, in keeping with the Christmas legend, food was brought to support the family.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.