According to one of the ancient traditions, the statue of the patron saint of the city is transferred to a boat. The boat with the statue makes a ride, and when the boat with the priceless religious relic returns back to the port, the locals greet it with joyful shouts and songs. After this a large procession escorts the statue back to the basilica. After such solemn procession all holiday celebrations in Bari are considered officially open. Here tourists and the locals can enjoy fairs, music concerts, theatrical performances and various colorful parades. The festive events last for three days. On May 9, when night falls to the city, all residents and tourists gather on the main square of the city and enjoy colorful fireworks.
The gathering of the sacred "Manna" is also considered one more important event of the holiday. The manna is poured into tiny vials and is sent to various religious communities and churches. A part of the manna is mixed with water and is distributed in small vials - the sacred fluid can be purchased by anyone. Religious people believe that a bottle of the ointment is the best talisman against misfortune, and the sacred fluid can cure any disease. Small bottles of the holy water are sold not only during the time of the celebration; you can buy them at any time of a year – the liquid is known as one of the most popular souvenirs. Fiesta of Saint Nicholas is one of the most significant religious events in the world. Every year the festival attracts more and more visitors from different parts of the planet.
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