5. June 2020

Rome in summer

Tips and information about Rome in summer. Find everything you need to know about spending the summer in Rome in this article: (1) important information about opening hours of museums, attractions and papal audiences, (2) interesting tips for events in Rome during summer and (3) suggestions how to survive the summer in Rome.

Meteorologically seen summer starts on June 1, astronomically seen on June 21, but for Romans the start of summer is a day between those two dates: June 8. The reason is simple: On June 8, 2019, schools close and summer vacation officially starts. Schools only reopen on September 16, 2019. Therefore, June, July, August and half of September are considered as the summer in Rome.

Summer in Rome: 12 Tips to keep cool in Rome during summer

La Dolce Vita… where to experience it better than in Rome during summer? In summer when the temperatures are high and the sun in burning, most visitors would like to jump into the Trevi Fountain just like Anita Ekberg. But let me tell you straight away: even though it is intriguing, taking a bath in the Trevi Fountain is strictly prohibited! It is very expensive if you get caught.

ROME_Trevi fountain_transverse_l

From the second week in June until early September, many Romans leave the city for their summer vacation and the traffic in the center of Rome is noticeably slower. Not a bad time for tourists to be in Rome!

Rome summer tip no 1: Refreshing Grattachecca

ROME_ice cream_02

While Roman office workers continue working in their air-conditioned offices, tourists seek every possibility to get refreshed. Shady places in parks and churches are very popular, ice cream parlours and bars and cafés selling iced coffee usually very crowded. Romans and tourists both love Grattachecca, a special ice-cream with syrup, watermelon and coconut shells. Very refreshing and so delicious!

Rome summer tip no 2: concerts in Rome during summer

Caracalla-baths-in-Rome

Hot summer nights are perfect for outdoor concerts. In the middle of June Ed Sheeran will perform at the Olympic stadium, Thirty Seconds to mars is coming to the Auditorium in early July and many other music festivals will take place throughout the summer.

The baths of Caracalla are popular for classical theatres, Romeo and Juliet, La Traviata and Carmen are amongst them.

Rome summer tip no 3: Opening hours of Roman museums during summer

Vatican Museums inside

During summer, all Roman museums are open according to their usual opening hours. Only the Vatican Museums are closed on August 15. Roman sights and attractions are open as well and follow their normal opening times. Hence, no problem to visit the Colosseum, St. Peter’s or even the Galleria Borghese during your summer holiday in Rome. Don’t forget to book your tickets in advance if you want to avoid waiting in the burning sun at Roman ticket offices.

Rome summer tip no 4: Papal audiences in Rome during summer

papal visit

Papal audiences are a great experience. I have had the pleasure of seeing the Pope live in Rome already. There are a few changes to the calendar of papal audiences: In July 2019 no papal audiences take place during the whole month. In August, one papal audience is cancelled, you won’t be able to see the Pope on August 14, 2019.

Rome summer tip no 5: festival near the Tiber River in Rome

Tiber River festival Rome

For a few years now, a huge summer festival takes place near the Tiber River in Rome between the Ponte Sisto and Tiber Island. Some tents are put up under Ponte Sant’Angelo as well. The festival starts with the beginning of summer vacation on June 8, 2019 and ends in the beginning of September, when Romans come back from their summer vacation and go back to work.

Besides culinary stands an interesting cultural program is put up. There are table talks of different topics, which are usually more interesting for locals than for Rome visitors since topics are usually discussed in Italian and concern Rome and/or Italy.

Rome summer tip no 6: Open air cinema in Rome during summer

Every summer, a huge open air cinema is put up on Tiber Island, where many film classics are shown. Summer evenings at the Tiber River in Rome are very lovely and you can enjoy a delicious meal there as well. There is a large choice of different kinds of cuisines and restaurants set up professional tents. You can choose between Pizza, Hamburgers, Steaks, Spanish or Mexican specialties and culinary offers from all around the world.

Rome summer tip no 7: Day trip to the sea

Ostia-Cancelli-beach-Rome

It is very easy to get to the sea from Rome. Just take a train to Ostia at the metro station Pyramide. Best thing: a normal metro ticket is enough to get to the sea. From the metro station Lido Centro it is only a few minutes walk to the sea. Romans like to walk on the “Pontile di Ostia”. It protrudes into the sea and offers a beautiful photo backdrop.

Notice: you have to pay entry to the beaches near Rome. You can also rent sunbeds and parasols. There are also a few beaches where you are not requires to pay entry. These are accessible from the metro station Stella Polare. You can walk along the beaches even without paying. Only if you want to lay down in the designated areas you will be asked to pay.

Ostia is a great place to eat. Oysters, seafood and shell food are very delicious. Try the oysters at Michelino! If you are looking for culture, you can visit ancient ruins near the metro station Ostia Antica. Only a few meters away you will find an exceptional archeological area.

Other trains will take you from the main station Termini to the southern cities of Anzio or Gaeta or the northern regions of Ladispoli and Civitavecchia. Romans like to take a speed boat from Anzia to get to Ponza Island. The water is exceptionally beautiful there and you can find natural pools. The smaller islands next to Ponza are part of a protected area and access is strictly controlled.

Rome summer tip no 8: Day trip to the mountains

Villa-DEste

Even back in Ancient Rome, going to the mountains or the sea was very popular during summer. The Pope’s summer residence is located at Castel Gandolfo. Pope Francis spends his summers in Rome. Therefore it is possible to visit the papal summer residence Castel Gandolfo during summer.

Another great destination is Villa d’Este in Tivoli. The fountains are very refreshing and lovely to look at on hot summer days. The villa is nicely decorated and open for visitors. Liszt, the Hungarian composer spent several years here.

Not far from Tivoli you can visit the ruins of the villa of Emperor Hadrian. It was the biggest mansion any emperor has ever built. Both the Villa Adriana and the Villa d’Este are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. While Villa d’Este is like an oasis with its fountains, it can get rather hot in Villa Adriana. Remember to bring sunscreen, parasols and enough water.

Rome summer tip no 9: “Nasoni” water fountains in Rome

Since it is usually very hot in Rome during Summer, don’t forget to drink water regularly. This doesn’t mean that you will have to carry around a heavy backpack with several bottles of water, because there is a better solution in Rome: the Nasoni. The Italian word nasone literally means nose and describes the typical drinking water fountains, which you can find everywhere in the city. Just like the locals do you can fill up your bottles at these fountains. The quality of the drinking water is very good in Rome and is checked regularly. The fountains are accessible 24 hours a day.

Be careful to actually take water from a drinking water fountain, where it says the words Acqua potabile (drinkable). On larger fountain you will most likely see the note Acqua non potabile (not drinkable).

Rome summer tip no 10: Outdoor pools in Rome

outdoor pool Rome

In rural areas water parks and outdoor pools are a common site and very popular during summer. But in large cities like Rome it can be quite difficult to find an outdoor pool.

If you are looking for a chance to dip into a cool pool I recommend you the outdoor pool Piscina delle rose in Rome. (© picture Pool Rome romatoday.it).

To get to the outdoor pool you can take the metro line B and get off at the station Eur Palasport. The pool is open until September 16. You can go swimming every day of the week, Monday to Friday from 9 am to 9 pm, on weekends and holidays until 7 pm. Admission is 16 euros for adults and 10 euros for children between 6 and 10 years.

Rome summer tip no 11: Water park Hydromania in Rome

water park hydromania Rome

For even more fun and action you should visit the water park Hydromania in Rome. This park offers a lot of fun for the whole family. Water slides, several pools, wave pools, playgrounds, lawns for sunbathing, restaurants and cafés are waiting for their visitors. Hydromania has enough to offer to keep children and families occupied the whole day. (© picture Hydromania.it).

During the the week Hydromania is open from 9.30 am to 6.30 pm. On weekends and holidays the park stays open for half an hour longer. Admission rates are at 24 euros for adults, 19 euros for children. There are additional prices to rent lounge chairs and reduced admission fees for half day passes. To get there, take the bus 088 at the end of the tram line 8 (Gianicolense).

Rome summer tip no 12: Summer shopping in Rome 

Via-Condotti-Shopping-Rome

Shopping in the heat sounds like a nightmare for you? Well, let me tell you that it is quite the opposite case in Rome. Almost all shops and big department stores are air-conditioned and the perfect opportunity for a small break from the heat.

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