April 25 each year in Italy marks Italy’s Liberation Day from 23 years of fascist dictatorship and 5 years of war. It’s a national holiday observed all over the country. April in Rome tends to be sunny and warm, so most locals take the holiday as an opportunity to venture out for a picnic outside or have lunch al fresco.
History of April 25 in Italy
April 25 is the symbolic date selected by the National Liberation Committee in 1946 to commemorate the end to fascist rule in all of Italy. Major cities like Bologna, Milan, Turin, Genoa, and Venice were all liberated by late April 1946, while Rome was actually liberated and under Allied control since June of 1944.
Just a few months later in 1946 on June 2, the population of Italy held a referendum and elected to abolish the monarchy and become a republic instead.
What to expect on April 25 in Rome
As with any national holiday, expect many businesses and restaurants that would normally be open to take the day off. Banks and schools are closed as well as other government agencies to observe the holiday. In the center of Rome, monuments and museums will be regularly open.
Expect diverted bus routes due to various manifestations, including a parade by the Italian ANPI organization (National Association of Italian Partisans, or Associazione Nazionale Partigiani d’Italia) which was formed from the original participants of the Italian resistance. Their parade route begins at Via G. Genocchi and terminates near Piramide. Additionally, a special ceremony will take place at the Altare della Patria in Piazza Venezia, so expect road closures and traffic in the area.
Many local Romans take advantage of the national holiday to get out and about, especially if the weather is nice (which April tends to promise). It’s a great opportunity to head to any of Rome’s nearby beaches or parks and integrate with the locals. Alternatively, there are always interesting exhibitions taking place in the city.
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