Whilst a national holiday to celebrate the heat of summer, it also coincides with the assumption of Mary, in which the Catholic church believes the Virgin Mary was welcomed into heaven. It is however mainly celebrated as a holiday in which many Italians take time off work to venture out of the major cities.
Unlike elsewhere in Italy however, Rome comes alive during this period with the capital turning into one huge street party. The height of the celebrations being on 15th August with the Gran Ballo di Ferragosto, whereby the numerous piazza’s hold events focusing on different dances. Live music, fireworks, market stalls and entertainment will support everything from traditional tango and salsa to modern day hip-hop and rock music.
Ciampino and Fiumicino (aka Leonardo da Vinci International Airport) are the nearest airports to Rome, both of which are less than 45 minutes away. Whilst the locals may head to the coast, the influx of tourists makes way for one off events. Street entertainment is largely free, head to some of the main squares such as Piazza Navona or Piazza del Popolo for public entertainment. Whilst there are no set times for the events, dancing and market stalls will take place during the day, with more live entertainment and fireworks in the evening.
If you’re travelling with children, then the daytime will have fun for all the family but be aware of the summer sun. It is also a time when any locals staying within the city go out for dinner more than usual, so it is worth booking restaurants in advance. The major Piazza’s appeal to tourists, however take a walk away from the crowds for more traditional experience. If you’re visiting for the religious side of the Feast of the Assumption, the Vatican is closed on the 15th August however there are plenty of smaller churches all around the city.
Look at a wide selection of houses and apartments, holiday homes, villas and other private rentals in close to the main squares. If you are looking to travel from elsewhere within the city, it is easy to arrive on foot or use public transport. Check our accommodation in Rome.
Many every day places may be closed along with the Vatican, however popular state run museums and attractions such as the famous Colosseum, Palatine Hill and the ruins of Ancient Rome will remain open. Walking tours will be available so visit the Trevi Fountain, along with many of the cities Piazzas.
For more information on Ferragosto, including: the history, the feast of the assumption and the blessed Virgin Mary, Ferragosto during the fascist regime and more see here.
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