Rapska Fjera, the first and largest medieval summer fair, brings back fond memories of my time spent on the Island of Rab, in the nothern region of the Adriatic coast. My step-dads mother was born and raised on the Island, so coming back every summer is much like a family reunion with all the aunts, uncles and cousins getting together. A few of those cousins even participate in the festival crossbow tournament.
During the three days that the festival takes place, the entire island goes back in time. Small artisan stores move to the streets, so you can have a belt or perfume made infront of your eyes, while your hair is being braided with tiny flowers into a typical do from the medeival times.Food and wine of the olden days are served along the streets of the old town and along the beach promenade below – freshly fried šulčići with salted fish or proscuitto are our favorite among the options, but you could also find freshly grilled fish, fritule, and rabska torta. At the beach promenade, an entire fishermen village is built altogether with the traditional tools, machines and even toys for children. Air is filled with the song and music as passers by. You can also expect several art and craft workshops where you will be able to learn how to weave a net, wooden baskets or flower wreaths. Medieval crafts will also be shown by blacksmiths, carpenters and local brewers. At the fair, you will be able to get acquainted with traditional Rab costumes made of jaundice fabric, watch a costumed procession, and the youngest will be able to try their hand at medieval games such as the one with pebbles on a canvas base.
This festival is genuinely one of the most cherished and looked forward to events by the locals on the Island, as well as returning guests. If you are ever close by I suggest you pop over for a three-day-long celebration at the heart of this small and happy island.