Kvarner newsletter / no 42

Unique festival on the island of Rab
Rabska fjera – Medieval Summer Festival

Among the many events taking place on Rab this summer, particularly worth visiting is the large medieval summer festival entitled Rabska fjera. This cultural and historical event will take place from the 25th until the 27th of July.

The medieval summer festival entitled Rabska fjera, a unique event in Croatia, will again this year attract thousands of visitors to the town of Rab on the island of the same name from the 25th to the 27th of July. The Rabska fjera is based on the area's rich cultural heritage and tradition that dates back to the year 1364, when this event took place for the first time. Over the centuries, this tradition slightly changed, and there were years when it did not take place.  The tradition was brought back to life in 2002, and the basic idea remained the same – the Fjera still represents the most important tradition of the island of Rab. The event was originally designed in honour of the King Ljudevit Veliki (Louis the Great) who freed Rab from the Venetians, and of St. Christopher, patron saint of the town of Rab, who – according to the legend – used his powers to save Rab.
Participants of the Rabska fjera are craftsmen and members of various cultural and artistic associations from the island of Rab, which foster traditional handicrafts and customs similar to those in the Middle Ages. The Rabska fjera takes place in the evenings during three days – 25th of July, the feast of St. James, 26th of July, the feast of St. Anne, and 27th of July, the feast of St. Christopher.
The programme starts each day after 9 p.m. and lasts until late at night. In addition to the opening ceremony of the 10th Rabska fjera, visitors will have the chance to admire various historical events. On the feast of St. Anne (26th July) there will be a large medieval fair of trades and workshops, where visitors can take active part. The biggest celebration is scheduled for the last day of the event, when the programme starts already in the morning with a big procession dedicated to St. Christopher. In the evening, visitors will have the chance to watch the popular Knight Tournament in honour of St. Christopher, which will include the performance of the original Rab crossbowmen. The ceremony will culminate in spectacular fireworks and an open-air entertainment programme.
In addition to the Rapska fjera, visitors to Rab will have the opportunity to enjoy the Rab Musical Evenings that will take place occasionally until September in the Church of the Holy Cross. In early August, young visitors are invited to the attractive Rab Summer Festival.