Let's face it: the summer months in Rome are hot, crazy hot. But it is also a great period to visit the city! The historic centre is packed with interesting things to see and events that will reveal you a magical atmosphere that can be experienced only this time of the year.
Days are at their longest and the warm night air is ideal to hang out even in the latest hours. With the proper precautions, you will be able to enjoy at best even the hottest days, making your Roman holidays unforgettable.
So, to help you out enjoying your summer in Rome, here is a list of suggestions by ItalyXP. Let us know what do you think about it!
If you're looking for an alternative to a food tour or gelato, why not try a traditional Roman aperitivo? It's a perfect way to start the evening, with a drink accompanied by some delicious bites, like cornetto and cappuccino, pizza bianca or supplì, which are typical Italian appetizers. The best areas to enjoy an aperitivo in Rome are Trastevere, Campo de' Fiori. The ambiance is relaxed and the people are friendly, making it an enjoyable and authentic way to experience Roman culture.
When the temperatures gets hot in Rome, the best time to wonder around is in the evening, when the historic centre become illuminated and lively, and the locals and visitors pack the streets and squares. “Where’s all those people going?”, you might ask… Well, Rome has several summer that will keep your schedule pretty busy.
If you’re in Rome in the summer months you really cannot miss the estate romana ("Roman summer"), when the city come alive with music from local bands, films on outdoor screens, cultural and gastronomic events.
For instance, you could admire the stunning performances of opera and ballet at the Terme di Caracalla (the ancient Roman baths), or you could join the Eutropia Festival, held at the ex-slaughterhouse in the area of Testaccio, where musicians from all over the world will perform their works. Check for details at www.comune.roma.it.
In summer, eating gelato is an everyday delicious ritual. Keep in mind that gelato it’s quite different than ice cream: the artisanal gelato is more creamy and dense than ice cream and is often lower in calories, fat and sugar.
In Rome there are several excellent gelato parlors and if you’re craving for a good gelato you will certainly be able to find it. If you have a true sweet-tooth going for a gelato will be probably be one of the highlights of your holiday, but to get a glimpse of its authentic flavor it might be better to head right to the most renowned Roman gelateria.
One of the locals favorite is Fatamorgana, very close to the Vatican walls, famous for its fresh ingredients, and without colorings or chemicals. Always staying in the Vatican area, near the Castel Sant'Angelo, you can find the Gelateria dei Gracchi that makes an excellent homemade gelato with all-organic, fresh ingredients: the pistachio (made with fresh-roasted Sicilian pistachios) will change your life. And if you want to try something original, head to the Gelateria del Teatro, close to Piazza Navona, which boasts a lovely location, tucked into a characteristic narrow alley.
Want to find a refuge from the heat of Rome? If you want to stay within the city, there’s no better place than the parks. There are a variety of parks in the central area of Rome: from the vast green meadows such as Villa Ada, to the monumental gardens decorated with fountains and monuments such as Villa Borghese, and the innumerable tiny parks in the neighborhoods. Some of those are marvelous and, best of all, quiet and cool.
The parks of Rome are ideal for picnicking: throw in a bottle of local wine, a good loaf of focaccia with some cheese and cold cuts, and you have yourself a perfect lunch in the green. Among the best spots for picnics are Circus Maximus, the Borghese Gardens and the lovely Villa Torlonia.
And in the summer nights, the parks of Rome are packed with events and live music. For instance, Villa Ada and Villa Pamphili host concerts that please a wide variety of tastes. You will not regret a visit to those truly exceptional green oases, that with their events and their activities for kids, help to make the city a unique and wonderful place to visit, relax and play!
A longtime favorite of Romans and visitors alike is the Lungo il Tevere festival held every year along the banks of the Tiber River. White tents start popping up at the beginning of June that house restaurants, shops and bars until the end of August.
There are a variety of restaurants to choose from that range from traditional Roman to Mexican. In addition, there are exhibitions, live music, theater, poetry readings and L'Isola del Cinema, which runs films on the lovely Tiber Island.
Outdoor cinema options this year are plentiful, with a summer program hosted by Cinema America in Trastevere's Piazza San Cosimato. Nightly screenings throughout summer are free for all.
Summer is a popular time to visit Rome, but it’s also time to visit the wonderful beaches. Sure, when the weather gets too hot you can always cool off at the urban swimming-pools, but if you want to do as the Romans do, you might prefer to take a day trip out of the city.
In the surroundings of Rome, in fact, there are several charming beaches easily reachable by car or public transport within an hour. One of the most popular is Fregene, famous for its lively nightlife. The ideal destination for a day in the sun with aperitivo, drinking, and dancing. And the nearby Maccarese offers much less crowded beaches, during the day time.
If you want to mix a culture and relax, Sperlonga is your ideal summer destination: an ancient charming town whit a long stretch of white sand and crystal-clear water. But Sperlonga is also famous for its archaeological museum, on the site of Emperor Tiberius' ancient grotto: a must see for history lovers. But Santa Marinella is our favorite choice, probably because of its charming atmosphere, the great seafood and the Odescalchi Castle that characterized the beach skyline.
Rome is most definitely a magical city, but when the sun goes down and the night illumination infuses a sense of romance and mystery the likes of which you have never seen before. Walking through the picturesque streets of the historic centre, between ancient fountains and monuments, or eating an Italian dinner at an outside table are wonderful ways to pass a warm summer night in the Eternal City.
With our Walking Tour by night you'll skip the confusion and experience Rome by night at best. But if you prefer to admire the city from a different point of view, you can even choose a Tour by bike (for the sporty ones) or a Tour by Segway (if you prefer exploring the city with no effort).