Palio delle Bisse – rowing shell race

The Palio delle Bisse is a traditional rowing shell race on Lake Garda. Teams from many towns around the largest lake in Italy take part to defend their honor and win the Bandiera del Lago.

Palio delle Bisse
Palio delle Bisse

The races of the Palio delle Bisse are hold from June to August. The early evening at Lake Garda has a special atmosphere that’s why the races take place at that time. The qualification races and the final are in the picturesque town Lazise.

The rowing shells that are used for the Palio delle Bisse are typical Venetian. The boats are slim and taper off the bow and the stern. In those rowing shells 4 men are standing and paddle. Originally the boats were used for catching fish.

The races have a long tradition. The first race took place in Salò in 1548. During the two World wars the tradition was almost forgotten until some history fans revived it in 1967. Ever since the Palio delle Bisse is staged every year.

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