Rome for the holidays
‘Tis the season to be jolly, and here in Rome jolly doesn’t even begin to cover the level of yuletide cheer and spirit you’ll feel after completing our top ten list of Christmas must-do’s.
Christmas Trees in Rome
Nothing says Christmas like Christmas trees, and nothing says Christmas in Rome like the mother of all Christmas Trees located in Saint Peter’s square. Since the Pope holds the environmental issue at heart, the 26-meter high tree will have energy-saving lights this year, too. While at Piazza Venezia, Rome says hello to another Netflix sponsored Christmas tree!
Indulge in Panettone or Pandoro
By now you have probably noticed the colorful boxes of large round cake-bread stacked in every available corner of Rome’s supermarkets, pasticcerie, even the local “cinese.” Although it is considered perfectly acceptable by Italian standards to go hard on the panettone or pandoro of your choice before, during and after Christmas, be advised: not all panettone and pandoro were created equal. Here are our top pics:
Le Levain, Via Luigi Santini 22/23
Antico Forno Roscioli, Via dei Chiavari 34
Bompiani, Largo Bompiani 8
Gruè, viale Regina Margherita 95/99
Panificio Bonci, via Trionfale 34/36
Romoli, Viale Eritrea, 142
Go Ice Skating
Don’t act so surprised, Rome has its fair share of festive holiday rinks for ice skating, even if the weather in December is rarely close to freezing. Check out the rink at Parco dell’Auditorium, or try one of these rinks:
Auditorium Parco della Musica, Viale Pietro De Coubertin, 30
Ice Park Euroma2, Via dell’Oceano Pacifico, 83
Galleria Porta di Roma, Via Alberto Lionello, 201
See some Nativity Scenes
Christmas wouldn’t be complete without the star of the show (Baby Jesus that is, not Santa Claus.) To get your fill of nativity scenes for a lifetime, check out the 100 Presepi in Vaticano, or peek into the major churches to see the various forms of Christmas Nativities.
7 December – 12 January 2020
Sala San Pio X in Via della Conciliazione, 5 (Entrance: Via dell’Ospedale, 1)
One of the best ways to spread some holiday cheer is through music; however, for those of us who were not given the gift of song caroling is out of the question, nor would we suggest caroing around Rome for that matter. Thankfully, the Gospel Festival is hosting a series of holiday concerts guaranteed to lift your spirits.
22 December – 31 December
Auditorium Parco della Musica
Concerts in Churches
See above. Music = Merriment and Holiday cheer. Attend a free concert in one of the beautiful churches throughout Rome.
Wander Around a Christmas Market
We know, we know, Christmas Markets are nothing new and they happen every year.. Hear us out though, the Mercatini di Natale in Rome have upped their game this year, and there are some seriously cool markets you won’t find anywhere else.
Ring in the New Year at la Festa di Roma
Not sure what to do on NYE? Don’t miss out on the fourth edition of La Festa di Roma, an all-day extravaganza that lasts 24 hours from December 31st at 9pm till 9pm of January 1st! The event promises to entertain with more than 100 performances involving 1000 artists coming from different countries and continents taking place all around the Eternal City.
It’s beginning to look alot like Christmas, especially in the winding vicolos and side streets decked with twinkling lights and with glowing orbs hung above. Take a stroll down these decorated stradas, take in the festive holiday vibes and while you’re at it try the chestnuts roasting on an open fire…
Via dei Condotti
Via del Governo Vecchio
Via del Corso
Via del Boschetto & Via Urbana
Piazza di Spagna
Catch a Christmas play or concert
When Christmas is at the door, the whole city goes crazy with holiday cheer, and Rome’s theaters and concert halls are no exception! What better way to soak into the holiday spirit than with a festive show? From The Nutcracker at Auditorium Conciliazione (20-26 Dec), Teatro Olimpico (3 Dec) and Teatro dell’Opera (4-15 Dec), to Swan Lake (31 Dec) at Rome’s Opera House and the Jumpin’Jive orchestra at Auditorium Parco della Musica (11 Dec), the calendar is jam-packed! Don’t miss out on all the holiday fun!