March simply did not live up to its crazy weather reputation. We have been lucky enough to experience an early spring, so I have high hopes for April in Rome.
With the 4-day Easter weekend looming in the middle of the month, as well as Rome’s birthday on the 21st, there will be plenty of festivities this April in Rome. It is one of my favorite months in Rome because we have fewer crowds and hints of the perfect weather to come.
The calendar this month promises everything from film screenings to pizza and gelato festivals, so without further adieu, here is what to do in Rome in April 2017:
1 – 2 April: The Irish Film Festa continues this weekend, screening classic Irish made films at the Casa del Cinema in Villa Borghese park. Tickets are free on a first come first serve basis (distributed 45 minutes before each screening). A program of the films is here, as well as timing of Q&A sessions with many of the directors. All films are shown in original language with Italian subtitles.
1 – 2 April: 30 pizza makers will be at La Città della Pizza to create 90 different pizzas for a weekend of, you guessed it, PIZZA. Entry to the event at the Ex-Caserma (which is featured in this post) is free but the pizza is not. Sad. You can buy a preloaded card the website to skip the line once you arrive and get straight down to eating.
2 April: But plan your museums visits carefully because there will be multiple road closures as the Rome Marathon is taking place today.
5-9 April: Rome’s Institut Français is presenting Rendez-Vous – a film festival dedicated to contemporary French cinema.
7-9 April: The artichoke festival returns! The 67th edition of the festival, dedicated to fried, stewed, boiled and otherwise deliciously prepared carciofi is taking place in Ladispoli. More information is on the website. Sagre are some of my favorite things about living in Italy. Here is a bit more about the tradition and the best sagre near Rome.
8 April: TedxRoma is in town and imagining what the future will look like in 20 years.
8-9 April: Head out to the Botanical Gardens for special tea ceremonies and guided visits (in Italian) to celebrate the cherry blossoms. More information here.
9 April: The French Academy in Rome at Villa Medici is open for the day for free visits. I have always wanted to visit this Palazzo!
14 April: Today is Good Friday and the Colosseum will close early because the Pope will lead a procession to the monument and say an annual public Good Friday prayer of the Stations of the Cross.
16 April: Happy Easter! Expect closures around the city today as some shops and restaurants take the day off.
17 April: Today is pasquetta or “Little Easter.” It is a public holiday in Italy, and marks the unofficial kick off to spring. This is when friends head out to picnic in the countryside or remind themselves what the beach looks like. The saying goes: Natale con i tuoi, Pasqua con chi vuoi! Which essentially means that you have to spend Christmas with your family but you can spend Easter break as you like! Many shops and restaurants will close or observe limited hours so why not join the fun and take a day trip from Rome?
21 April: It is Rome’s birthday! The Eternal City turns 2771 years old today! Woo! Expect free entrance to the Colosseum and Forum, as well as a concerts and historical reenactments this weekend.
22 April: The American University of Rome is hosting an Open Day for prospective students from 11 am to 3 pm. Stop by and meet faculty and discuss the programs available.
29 April – 1 May: The Gelato Festival comes to Rome! The gelato will take over the Pincio Terrace, so you will get views to go with your frozen treats. And if you can’t wait, here’s where to find Rome’s best gelato any day.
Ongoing Exhibits in Rome
Vivian Maier: An exhibit of Vivian Maier’s photography will be open at the Museo di Roma in Trastevere through 18 June. I will definitely be heading out to see this one because the story behind this relative unknown street photographer is fascinating.
Giovanni Boldini: An exhibition featuring the works of Giovanni Boldini is running through 16 July at the Vittoriano. The painter is best known for his beautiful portraits of high society Parisians. Jimmy went recently and loved it.
Artemisia Gentileschi: Gah! Last full month to see the Artemisia Gentileschi exhibit. I think I was pretty clear that I don’t love the permanent collection at Palazzo Braschi, but I want see this show and hope to try to make it this month. I have heard the show is a bit overhyped but Artemisia Gentileschi was the only female painter who gained fame around the time of Caravaggio. The show runs until 8 May.
Letizia Battaglia: It is your last chance to see the exhibit of vintage photos from Letitia Battaglia – ‘photographer of the mafia’ – now on show through 17 April 2017 at the Maxxi.
Wondering about events in Rome during other months? I publish a calendar of Rome events on the first of the month, but you can also check this summary of when to visit to Rome.
This post will be updated as more information about April events in Rome becomes available.