Even crazier than the idea of a ginormous, gift-giving bunny is the fact that, on Easter, Rome actually keeps its museums and monuments open. Instead of closing them, which is usually par for the course on national holidays.
Like last year, therefore, you can look forward to lots of sites being open this Easter Sunday and Monday (including even those museums that would normally be closed Mondays). Sites open include the Colosseum, Borghese Gallery, Ara Pacis, Palazzo Massimo, Capitoline Museums, Palazzo Barberini, Galleria Corsini, and Castel Sant’Angelo (above). The exceptions: MACRO Testaccio and La Pelanda, which will remain closed.
Lots of Romans head out of the city this weekend, going home for Easter. One Rome resident who'll be around Easter weekend, though, is the Pope — and if you want to catch a glimpse of him, you have plenty of opportunities!
Today, the big Good Friday event is the Way of the Cross ("Via Crucis"). Be at the Colosseum at 9:15pm to see the Pope (and thousands of people); be aware that nearby streets will be blocked to traffic and that the Colosseo metro stop will be closed after 6:30pm. After all, just look at these crowds…
Tomorrow, the Pope will preside over the Easter Vigil at St. Peter's Basilica, starting at 9pm.
On Easter Sunday, the Pope will celebrate Mass in St. Peter's Square at 10:15am, followed by the "Urbi et Orbi" blessing from the central loggia of St. Peter's at noon.
And, just for fun, here are a couple more photos from last year's Via Crucis at the Colosseum.
Here’s some irony for you: Easter’s the most important feast in the Christian calendar — but in the home of the Pope himself, it’s also the toughest day of the year to find food. At least in restaurants in Rome.
Ironic or not, it, well, makes sense. Most Italians are at home on Easter, chowing down that feast with family. Even restaurateurs.
Whether it’s ironic or not, though, one thing’s for sure: For travelers to Rome, it’s definitely inconvenient. So find out what’s open in advance… and, since you’ll be competing for dinner slots with lots of other hungry travelers (it’s high season now, after all!), book your meals a few days ahead of time, too. Unless you don’t mind eating microwaved spaghetti and meatballs on Tourist Alley every night.
“So then, where do I book?” you say. “Which of Rome’s great restaurants are actually open on Easter? I’m so worried I won’t experience that fantasticItalianfood I’ve heard all about!”