Bormio customs and traditions

A very old important place because of its topographic position, Bormio has kept a tight hold on its physiognomy and age old character, maintaining forms, customs and atmospheres of the past. We can proudly state that Bormio is a thousand-year-old town that still today offers visitors artistic, architectural and historical insights of rare beauty.

Since ancient times, religious and pagan festivities were one of the few ways of giving vent to the daily life of a population linked to sheep farming and agriculture, regulated by a harsh climate. Some of the traditional festivities, even though modified over the centuries, have reached us today

Among these is “Gabinat” on the 6th of January, an old tradition where children run around the town and the first one to say “Gabinat” will receive a gift. Then on the 31st of January Geneiront, the day when children say goodbye to the last day of January and the cold that goes away… crossing through the streets of the town to the clattering of tin cans tied together. Quite another kind is the Easter parade, floats with religious and social themes that parade along the town streets on Easter Sunday

Other old traditions have been revived in recent years, such as the election of the Podestà dei Matti and the parade of young people in the town, linked to a period that in ancient times was a synonym of festivities for Bormio: Carnival.

The Palio delle Contrade, which is now more than 40 years old, in February starts a sports competition between the Bormio districts that vie each other at night in contests of downhill and cross-country skiing through the streets of the town.

Also during the summer, an interesting itinerant type of initiative is crafts in the square, where tourists and valley dwellers can take a “journey” through mountain traditions, activities and products as well as tasting the prestigious Valtellina wines in the courts of Bormio’s historical centre.