Things to do in Rome

10 Best Things To Do In Rome On New Year’s Eve

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Typically, whether you want to dance the night away or celebrate in solitude, you can choose to ring in the New Year anyway you’d like in Rome. The entire city, from the Piazza del Popolo to the Colosseum, ignites in celebration. There’s a multitude of parties and events to keep you entertained throughout the night and bid farewell to the year that was. Not to forget a lavish cenone and some dazzling fireworks to complete the night!

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The following information is indicative of how New Year's Eve is usually celebrated in Rome.

Why Visit Rome for NYE

New Year’s in Rome is synonymous with unending strings of light, dazzling fireworks, free concerts, and delicious food. The piazzas and churches in the city are pompous as ever and will have you falling in love with Rome like never before.

New Year’s Eve is primarily a street festival in the Roman city center. The Festa di Roma, Rome's celebrations for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, includes a 24-hour programme of free concerts and cultural events, beginning at the Circus Maximus at 9:00 PM on the 31st of December, known in Italy as Capodanno. Attend the free concert that takes place at the Via dei Fori Imperiali. Located between the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia, this is once-in-a-year opportunity to witness the Colosseum enveloped by fireworks.

The Piazza del Popolo, located north of the city center just beyond the Spanish Steps, is another epicenter of NYE celebrations in Rome. Reach the piazza early because by 11:00 PM, the square is likely to be swarming with people. As soon as midnight arrives with the New Year in hand, a barrage of colorful fireworks lit up the sky. Sometimes the sky is so bright, you might have to look away!

Villa Borghese is another popular place to celebrate the last evening of the year with classical music and a traditional Italian meal.

Other great places to go to include the Quirinal Palace, where they host their own fireworks’ display, and the Piazza di Spagna. This is a recommended spot to watch the main fireworks from.

The locals welcome the new year with a glass of the finest spumante or prosecco coupled with a big New Year’s Eve dinner or what the Romans call, a cenone. You could gorge on this lavish dinner either at one of the many restaurants in Rome or at a friend’s house.

10 Best Ways to Ring in the New Year in Rome

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Kick off NYE celebrations at La Festa di Roma

#1 Rome New Year Eve
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Image Courtesy : Ipologica
Culture Street-Party Local's Favourite

Take part in the ‘La Festa di Roma 2020,’ an all-day free-for-all extravaganza that lasts from 31st December (9:00 PM ) till 1st January (9:00 PM). This year’s theme is ‘Nature’ and is set to host over 100 performances involving 1000 artists from 46 countries.


Watch the fireworks on Circus Maximus

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Fireworks Outdoor Night View

If you attend the festival at Circus Maximus, be prepared to be thrilled by the midnight fireworks. After the countdown to the New Year, fireworks sponsored by Acea, begin. For a clear view of the fireworks’, you can either go to the terrace of the Gianicolo or climb atop the Pincian Hill.


Attend a New Year's concert gala

#3 Rome New Year Eve
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Opera Concert Entertainment
from €39

Bid farewell to 2021 with live music from some of the most famous operas and music by Strauss, Mozart, Verdi, Puccini and others.


Head to Centro Storico for an outdoor musical concert

#4 Rome New Year Eve
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Outdoor Concert Fireworks

Centro Storico is one of the best places to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Rome. A musical concert is held at the piazza in front of the Quirinale, off Via Nazionale. Lasting till 11:00 PM, it is followed by a wonderful midnight fireworks display. Every year, the president of Italy also makes an appearance here.


Be a part of the Papal Vespers and Te Deum at St. Peter’s Basilica

#5 Rome New Year Eve
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Tradition Religious Basilica

At the celebration of the Papal Vespers at St. Peter’s Basilica, witness Pope Francis express his gratitude for the many ways in which Rome’s residents have worked to promote the common good of the city over the past year. The celebration will conclude with the traditional song of Te Deum.


Ring in the new year with locals at Trastevere

#6 Rome New Year Eve
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Food Local-style Relaxed

If you are looking for a quiet and relaxed New Year’s Eve, make sure you stay in Trastevere. Soak in the atmosphere created by the locals while gorging on a delicious traditional dinner made up of Silvestro lentils, carrots and pieces of cotechino (a large spiced sausage) or zampone (stuffed pig’s trotter).


Party the night away at Palazzo Brancaccio

#7 Rome New Year Eve
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Image Courtesy : Palazzo Brancaccio
Dinner Open-bar Party
from €50

Spend New Year’s Eve at one of the most exclusive places located at the heart of the Eternal City. Palazzo Brancaccio (Brancaccio Palace) proposes a glamourous evening with dinner, midnight toast, open bar and a DJ set.


Sprint your way into the New Year with We Run Rome

#8 Rome New Year Eve
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Outdoor Marathon Healthy
from €15

Nothing better than a good run to ring in the New Year’s? Join the 8th edition of the We Run Rome marathon which takes place on 31st December from 2PM to 6PM. The 10-km race starts and finishes at the Baths of Caracalla area and is a fun way for marathon lovers to celebrate New Year’s Eve, a healthy way around! To register, visit.


Find a good spot for the New Year Parade at Piazza del Popolo

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Parade Family-oriented Marching Bands

Head to the Piazza del Popolo to enjoy the 13th edition of the New Year Parade where some of America's best-known high school marching bands join forces with renowned Italian musical folk groups to stage a free, family-orientated parade in central Rome on 1st January to celebrate New Year's Day.


Dance till you drop at the Amore Festival

#10 Rome New Year Eve
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Image Courtesy : Capodanno Amore
Music festival EDM Indoor/Outdoor
from €35

If EDM is your groove, party at Amore Festival, Italy’s premiere New Year’s Eve electronic music festival. Held in Fiera di Roma, Amore features top international DJs as well as new and emerging artists and brings state-of-the art lights and sound to each of its multiple indoor and outdoor stages.

New Year Parties and Events In Rome

New Year Parties and Events In Rome
1. The Three Tenors

Enjoy this New Year's Eve concert inside the beautiful Caravita Church with one of Rome’s most talented opera performers. The Three Tenors carol the best Christmas songs over this two-hour long event which will start at 9:00 PM on 31st December. For further information, visit.

Image Courtesy : Romewise
New Year Parties and Events In Rome
2. Shari Vari

Near Piazza Navona is Shari Vari, which has been one of Rome’s coolest clubs since its inception in 2010. The unique name Shari Vari comes from ‘Sharing and Variety’. On New Year’s Eve, enjoy their buffet dinner and access to the club before and after midnight. Visit for more information.

Image Courtesy : Romeing
New Year Parties and Events In Rome
3. Swan Lake

Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake is must-watch in anyone’s lifetime but catching a show on New Year’s Eve makes it an extraordinary experience. Head to the Costanza Theater, one of Rome's official opera halls, to watch this beautiful ballet. For tickets, visit.

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New Year Parties and Events In Rome
4. Rome Gospel Festival

Be enthralled by the beauty and splendor of classical and contemporary Gospel music. Catch a New Year's Eve special by Danell Daymon & Greater Works, an award-winning ministry, been in existence for seven years. For tickets visit here.

Image Courtesy : Romeing
New Year Parties and Events In Rome
5. Cosmo Festival

For some guaranteed New Year fun, party at the Cosmo Festival and dance to the grooves of electronic, house and techno music. Held at Piazza Guglielmo Marconi, this festival boasts of legendary lineups, such as Tale of Us, Loco Dice, Chirs Liebing and Nina Kraviz. For tickets, visit.

Image Courtesy : Resident Advisor

New Year Traditions in Rome

Throwing out the past : At the stroke of midnight, people toss out things of the past, the ones they don’t need anymore - like kitchenware, appliances, and clothes, onto the street. While it’s not so much of a practice today, beware while walking the streets. You never know when a local decides to revive his culture!

A lavish cenone : Have a satisfying big New Year's dinner, called cenone, at someone’s place or a restaurant is a popular tradition in Rome.

Gorge on Lentils : One of the most important dishes in the traditional Italian New Year’s Eve meal are a plate of lentils, meant to bring luck for the coming year.

The red underwear tradition : Quite easy to be part of, wear red underwear like the Romans on New Year’s Eve. This tradition is based on the belief that the color red can ward off sickness.

Tuffo nel Tevere : Tuffo nel Tevere is a popular spectacle on New Year’s Day where daredevil divers take a 17-metre plunge off Ponte Cavour into the icy waters of the Tiber.

Where to eat in Rome on New Year’s Eve

Located near Piazza Navona and Campo dei Fiori, Ditirambo is the restaurant to go to on New Year’s if you want excellent quality food and wine at a reasonable price.

Osteria dell'Ingegno
Want to party and gorge on delicious food at the same time? Osteria offers you both. You can access Piazza del Popolo and Piazza Venezia, both of which will have music and fireworks.

If you are looking for a more tranquil New Year's Eve, Marzapane proves to be a wonderful choice. Their food is elegant and spectacular, and most importantly, affordable.

i Clementini
Enjoy i Clementini’s set cenone (big New Year's dinner, which is a tradition) under 100€ per person. Do try their fried shrimp and calamari.

Casa Bleve
If you want a high-quality dinner with fantastic wine, Casa Bleve is known for their vast wine cellar. Located right behind the Pantheon, you can easily join in the outdoor festivities after dinner.

Getting Around Rome On New Year’s Eve


On 31st December, Rome's metro will be running until 3:30 AM (2020). The metro stops close to Colosseum and Circus Maximus may close early (9:00 PM - 9:30PM) for security purposes.


Buses are the most frequent mode of transport on New Year’s eve.If you decide to hop on a bus, the biggest bus depots are located at Piazza Venezia, which is in front of the Termini station. In fact, this station is the main hub of Metro, as lines A (orange) and B (blue) intersect there. You will also find commuter trains as long as you are traveling within city limits.


Once you land at the Fiumicino International Airport, you can either catch a train or a bus. Take a train to one of the two main railway stations, Roma Termini (in the historic center) and Roma Tiburtina (just outside the walls).


You can also avail taxis through the MyTaxi app. UberX and UberPool are also available but they will cost you significantly more. Either way, book in advance as it’s almost impossible to hail a taxi on New Year’s Eve.

On New Year’s Day, Rome's public transportation begins running at 8am.

Where to Stay in Rome during New Year’s

  • Rome Cavalieri, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts : Ring in 2020 at this delightful hotel, enjoying their lavish New Year’s feast, luxurious spa treatments, and the stunning view of the midnight fireworks.
  • Rome Life Hotel : Spend a quiet New Year’s at this hotel located just minutes from the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, and Roman Forum.
  • Hotel Ponte Sisto : With access to their terrace, celebrate the New Year with your family at this 4-star hotel. The hotel provides a relaxing ambience with high-quality service.
  • The Independent Hotel : With great accessibility to the main city, rooftop bar, and all-night entertainment, this hotel is the perfect place to stay at for your New Year’s.
  • Hotel Lodi : Another great place to watch Rome’s fireworks from, Hotel Lodi offers their guests the opportunity to unwind and simply enjoy.

Tips For Those Traveling To Rome During New Year’s

Dress for the weather : Although Rome is not excessively cold around New Year’s, it does rain frequently and it can get quite windy. So carry a raincoat and a jacket. Other essentials include a hat, gloves, scarf, and waterproof shoes in order to stay cozy and comfortable.

Pope’s Mass : To attend the Pope’s Mass on New Year’s Day, you must order the invitation cards well in advance.

Pope’s Mass : To attend the Pope’s Mass on New Year’s Day, you must order the invitation cards well in advance.

Museums : Almost all museums are closed on 1 January. The following are the exceptions: Capitoline Museums, Markets of Trajan, Ara Pacis, Museo di Roma in Piazza Navona, Museo di Roma in Trastevere, Museo Napoleonico, and Museum of Ancient Sculpture Giovanni Barracco.

Circus Maximus : On New Year’s Eve, you can attend the free concert at the Circus Maximus. The party, which includes smaller concerts, theater plays, and live dance shows, continues in the streets and along the Tiber river.

Early reservations : No matter where you decide to eat or party, make an early reservation. Reserve your rooms early as well because the prices will increase as December closes in.

Avoiding the crowds : Reach early to secure a fair viewing spot and stick around after the fireworks’ display is over. That way you can avoid the first rush of people who head to the stations to get back home.


Where do the best NYE fireworks take place in Rome?

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Will the metro in Rome be running on New Year’s Eve?

Is the metro ride free on New Year’s Eve?

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Are attractions and museums in Rome open on New Year’s Eve?

Which attractions are open on the 1st of January?

Do taxis run on New Year’s Eve in Rome?