Since the 9th of June, restaurants, bars, shops and entertainment activities have been popping up underneath little white tents, creating a separate stream of activity along the Tiber River. These individual stands, or bancarelle, are part of the 15th annual Lungo Il Tevere festival.
The festival has two separate entrances at the street level, one at Ponte Garibaldi and the other at Ponte Sublicio with steps leading down to the activity along the river.
The bustle generally begins in the early evening, with a variety of riverside locales offering aperitivo, such as Hidroscalo Ponte Sisto. Some places, like the Birra Moretti stand are even open for lunch, serving classic Italian brews as well as pasta, panini and pizzas. There are also other informal spots to hangout like Caffe Letterario Ergo Bar where you can grab a book from one of the shelves, or Pizzeria Nani. For desserts, visitors can enjoy the crepe stand and chocolate fountain, or hit up the beloved granita stand, offering the classic Sicilian treat in large Palm Tree shaped plastic cups. A variety of stands sell clothing, jewelry and leather accessories. For those looking for a little competition with friends, there are several rows of foosball tables open for informal matches.
Although the goal behind the festival is to highlight this riverside area of Rome, bringing tourists and locals alike to this historical area, there is also no shortage of international food offerings. There is the Taqueria El Paso, a Mexican Restaurant and Lounge bar as well as Ristorante Etnico Taverna Mediterranea with a variety of vegetarian and Mediterranean dishes, and Rec 23 Burger Truck.
The festival also includes a variety of free live entertainment. The Association Bryaxis provides free musical and theatrical performances as well as antique and contemporary art displays. On Thursdays there is choral music and swing dance while Fridays are dedicated to classical music. Saturday is reserved for singer-songwriters from Rome, while Sunday features more theatrical performances.
Lungo Il Tevere is also especially friendly to the cycling population of Rome, offering discounts and special menus to those who are passing through on the nearby bike paths.
We’ll see you there.