By Megan Millisky
Every October, Rome hosts some of the most fun festivals in the world. Try Italian street food or attend a coffee festival. Travel back in time with access to a large selection of free museums and architecture. Here are 10 new ways to experience Rome, Italy.
1. Feast of St. Francis of Assisi
This important feast marks the death of St. Francis of Assisi. It is celebrated every October 4 with a wreath-laying ceremony. The Basilica of San Giovanni in Laterano, the cathedral church of Rome and the seat of the Pope, is nearby.
Address: Basilica of San Giovanni in Laterano
2. Domenica al Museo
“Sundays at the Museum” is a popular program with tourists. October 6, Rome’s monuments, museums, and archaeological locations are free. This includes the Colosseum, the Baths of Caracalla, and the National Gallery of Modern Art!
Address: Rome, Italy
3. Museum of Souls in Purgatory
Rome’s eeriest site is a one-room museum inside the church of Sacro Cuore Suffragio. This Catholic church is famous because it offers evidence of purgatory. There are handprints burned onto the pages of bibles and clothes which are said to have been burned by the hands of souls in purgatory. Don’t miss this unique location through October!!
4. Festival del Cibo di Strada
This huge food festival celebrates the best food from countries worldwide. October 4-6, taste-test your way through foods from Japan, India, Greece, or Romania. Or stick to Italian food and savor fresh pizza and homemade pasta.
5. RomaEuropa Festival
If you’re a theater lover, October is the perfect month to visit Rome. The RomaEuropa Festival brings dramatic theater and dance to life. Daring Italian shows play at dozens of venues across the city. And for families, there are shows for children.
6. Festa del Cinema di Roma
The Festa del Cinema di Roma is a glamorous film event. Feast your eyes on dozens of screenings in the Auditorium Parco della Musica. There will be panels, tributes, and celebrities attending the red carpet from October 17-27.
Address: Pietro de Coubertin, 30, 00196 Roma RM, Italy
7. SHOWRum Italian Rum Festival
Mingle with locals as you sip Italy’s finest rums. On October 13, SHOWRum will hold its popular annual festival. There are hundreds of rums to discover along with masterclasses and seminars.
8. Sagra del Tordo (Thrush Festival)
Each year, four districts of Montalcino send two delegates to challenge each other to an archery contest. After the contest ends, there is a feast of pappardelle, quail roast, polenta, and wine. The parade winds through each Quarter of the city October 25-26.
9. Sagra dell’Uva (The Festival of the Grape)
This wine festival grows more popular by the year. Head to the festival in Marino, a town about 13 miles from Rome. Discover Marino’s beautiful fountains and greenery. October 6, eat grape desserts, and of course, drink wine to your heart’s content!
10. Rome Art Week
Rome Art Week showcases over 150 art galleries and institutions this October 21-26. The best part is that it’s completely free! There are over 300 artists who take part in this world-renowned event.