Lungo Il Tevere – the best summer festival in Rome
Rome is such a super city to explore as it is, and if it couldn’t get any ‘cooler,’ here’s one festival you should not miss. Since 2003, Rome has been hosting the annual summer festival, Lungo il Tevere. It’s where the banks of the famous Fiume Tevere, or Tiber River, in the heart of Rome, come to life with numerous cultural events.
You get to experience theatre, dance, and music in venues along the river; most of which are free. Numerous artisans display their one-of-a kind pieces you can take home to impress your friends, and there are plenty of places to try craft beers, international and local cuisine, and it’s a great place to meet friends for the evening. The Tiber becomes a river of culture where the heart of the city comes to life. I’ve been here a couple of times and I continue to be impressed with all that is there to see and do.
What are the dates of the Lungo il Tevere?
So when is il Lungo il Tevere? The annual Lungo il Tevere is from early June to September and you cannot miss it. It flanks the banks of the Tevere River from the bridges that are near the Trastevere area of Rome. In 2018, Il Lungo il Tevere started on June 8 and goes until early September.
One thing to keep in mind is that Romans go on vacation in August. This can be a curse and a blessing. You may find several places closed and others remain open. However, that means you are not competing with the locals to see either the Lungo il Tevere or the many monuments that you must see in Rome. I’ve been in Rome in August, and while it was scorching hot, the city appeared empty. Yes… empty. Maybe consider going in August… ?
Where is il Lungo il Tevere, exactly?
Check the map below and it’s pretty clear. You start at Piazza Trilussa just on the south side of Ponte (Bridge) Sisto and follow the Tevere River around to the end at Porta Portese. To be honest, the most lively areas are from Ponte Sisto to Ponte Palatino, but explore all of it to see everything. Below is a great map to get your bearings of the Lungo il Tevere.
While you are snooping around the artist’s kiosks and restaurants, if you can get a spot at the Lost River Lounge Bar, stop there! You are near the small rapids of the Tiber River flowing down. The Tiber was flowing quite swiftly when I was there and was a nice, lively addition to when I was meeting friends. It also created a bit of a breeze in the humid, Roman air.
What time does Il Lungo il Tevere start?
Lungo Il Tevere starts early at 5:00p and most of the cultural events, like the theater, dance… start around 9/9:30p. Romans do things late and this is no exception. I have to admit I found their hours annoying, but only on the weekend. I wanted to go there during the day on a Saturday. Not only was it closed, I was told I couldn’t even enter to take a look around. What??? Understandably, people have day jobs and do these summer festivals in the evening. It’s nothing grave, but a bit annoying.
As a caveat, this festival gets frickin’ busy at night! If you want to have a look around, sample some food and drinks, and actually get a seat, go early! From 7-9p, most Italians are dining and will come to Il Lungo il Tevere after dinner. This is when you’ll also have the attention of the vendors, whether at the restaurants or the artists’s kiosks.
Catch some cinema at il Lungo il Tevere
If you like cinema, head to Isola Tibertina to the l’Isola di Roma, which runs until September 2. This is a multi-genre event with 82 nights of film screenings and one-of-a-kind discussions with important members from the film community.
How to get to Lungo Il Tevere
Rome’s Metro Map
Rome’s Tram Network
Where to stay near il Lungo il Tevere
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