Italy is enchanting any time of year, but the spring season is something else entirely. Those that can get away a few months before the summer tourist rush will enjoy cheaper airfare, reduced hotel rates, and fewer people at the best sights. If you’re ready for an authentic experience, here are some of our favorite springtime traditions in Italy.
Springtime in Italy provides wonderful temperatures for dining alfresco on a balcony, terrace, or in one of the country's famous piazzas. Whether you're sitting down for a full meal or just a refreshing aperitivo, sitting outside and taking in the majestic scenery and local culture only enhances the sensory experience.
Festa della Liberazione
Every year on April 25, the streets and roads all across Italy are packed with lively parades and parties to celebrate the end of fascism and Nazi occupation during World War II. The capital city of Rome is where you'll find the most elaborate celebrations, such as the annual presidential visit to the Ardeatine Caves mausoleum where hundreds of Romans were killed by Nazis in 1944. Liberation Day also calls for a special meal that starts in the late afternoon and continues into the evening.
Italy's iconic version of artisanal ice cream, gelato is delicious any time of the year, especially springtime, a season that bestows the land with an abundance of sunny days and pleasant temperatures. If you can make the trip over the pond, the Gelato Museum in Bologna, the town where it was first introduced, celebrates the rich and storied timeline of this classic frozen dessert. Check out the 5 Best Gelato Shops in Rome.
Wine Tasting in Tuscany
Tuscany produces some of the finest wines in the world, along with a number of canonical Italian foods like ribollita and pappardelle pasta. Beat the summer crowds and soaring temperatures by traveling to Tuscany's vineyards in the spring. Many wine tours also offer samplings of the local food!
Roman Artichoke Season
Artichoke season usually falls around Easter, and the revered vegetable is typically served with lamb for a classic holiday dish. A traditional Roman-Jewish recipe, Carciofi alla Giudia, calls for deep frying the vegetable whole until golden brown and crispy on the outside and soft in the middle. Try making this classic dish at home with authentic Roman-style artichokes from Sanniti, or roast them in herbs, garlic, and extra virgin olive oil.
Flowers in bloom, perfect temperatures, a sunset over the Tuscan countryside— that's the quintessential spring season in Italy. When you add good food, good friends, and good wine, it's pure magic.