10 Things to Do in Rome in Fall

The orange colours, the scent of chestnuts and the postcard-perfect scenery of Rome in autumn will make you fall in love. Here's a list of the best things to do during this romantic season

Nuria Rozas

Nuria Rozas

10 min read

10 Things to Do in Rome in Fall

Enjoying the autumn season in Rome | © Michal Goszczynski

Autumn is a fantastic time to travel to Rome, its parks are dyed in ochre, orange and reddish colours, prices are generally quite cheap, and the winter cold has not yet arrived. Take note of what not to miss in the Italian capital during these months.

1. Discover the wine-growing landscapes and the best wine in Italy

A visit to Umbria| ©Rick Ligthelm
A visit to Umbria| ©Rick Ligthelm

Are you a good wine taster? A good excuse to travel in autumn is that with the beginning of this season also comes the start of the grape harvest season. You'll be able to enjoy the wine-growing landscapes and a good tasting of this drink. You'll put all your senses to the test!

An irresistible travel plan at this time of year could be to travel for a couple of days to the capital of Tuscany, Florence, and take the opportunity to explore the wine-growing region. Take note of how to get from Rome to Florence or, even better, take the worry out of it by booking a Tuscany wine tasting tour.

Escape to Umbria, Italy's green heartland

You can also take a trip to the region of Umbria, about two hours from Rome, known as the green heart of the country for its forests. You'll also enjoy its medieval hill towns and vineyards and can accompany a good wine with other gastronomic delights of the season, such as its popular truffles.

In this article I compare the best excursions you can book from Rome so you can choose the option that best suits your budget.

Book a wine tasting tour to Tuscany

2. Celebrate the traditional Halloween night in Rome

Halloween Restaurant Settings| ©Alfa
Halloween Restaurant Settings| ©Alfa

If you thought that Halloween was a celebration that only Americans were excited about, you were wrong. In fact, did you know that in ancient Rome there was a very similar festival called 'Mundus Patet', where for three days the dead were brought back to earth?

If your trip to the Eternal City coincides with Halloween, pack your costume because you'll want to soak up the true spirit of this celebration. On the night of 31 October, there are plenty of activities on offer. Some of the most fun ones are:

Experience a day of terror at the Cinecittà World amusement park

For the whole month of October, Rome's film and TV themed amusement park, Cinecittà World, located in a former film studio that, in its heyday, was the largest in Europe. Book your ticket for Cinecittà and enjoy activities, shows and Halloween-themed tours for the whole family.

Take a ghost tour of Rome

Be scared to death by the most gruesome stories told by an expert guide on this three-hour night tour through the streets of Rome. Take advantage of the date to learn about the mysteries and legends of the monuments and events that took place in the Roman squares.

Book your ticket for Cinecittà

3. Take a selfie with your favourite actor at the Roma Film Fest

Actors on the red carpet at the Roma Film Fest| ©Stefano Pietruccio
Actors on the red carpet at the Roma Film Fest| ©Stefano Pietruccio

Want to see your favourite actors up close on one of the biggest red carpets in the world? If you're travelling to the Italian capital during October, you're in luck. Every year the Rome Film Fest, one of the most important international film events, is held in Rome.

Rome, to which the master Fellini paid homage in his films, was recognised in 2015 as a Creative City of Cinema by UNESCO, making it one of the capitals of the seventh art. Since 2006 it has been organising this film festival, whose carpet has been walked by directors such as Quentin Tarantino and actors such as Tim Burton, Al Pacino, Angelina Jolie... Get ready for a day of heart-pounding action!

And if you don't get all the photos you're looking for, remember you can cheat and book your ticket for the Rome Wax Museum.

Book your ticket for the Wax Museum

4. Enjoy the seasonal produce at the flea market

Produce Market in Campo dei Fiori| ©joanne clifford
Produce Market in Campo dei Fiori| ©joanne clifford

If you like charming flea markets, I suggest you spend a morning at the market located in the Campo dei Fiori square of the same name, just a few metres from the Tiber River and the basilica of Sant'Andrea della Valle. It is one of the oldest and most authentic markets in the capital, a festival of smells, colours and flavours.

Who doesn't remember the delicious smell of roasting chestnuts? We already know that, in Italy, culture revolves around the gastronomy of Rome and other cities, especially in autumn, one of the best times to enjoy seasonal products. In this popular market you will find the typical chestnuts, porcini mushrooms, truffles, grapes, olives...

Here you will discover the best artichokes and pumpkins in the Eternal City, which occupy an important place in traditional Roman cuisine. What's more, while you shop you can enjoy live music at any time thanks to the street performers who liven up the area. And remember, Campo dei Fiori is one of the places where Rome's gastronomic tours take place.

Book a food tour of Rome

5. Get cultured with the open-air performances

Performances in Romeeuropa| ©UK in Italy
Performances in Romeeuropa| ©UK in Italy

Cultural activities resume in autumn in the capital after the summer break. Grab a pen and paper and if you're in doubt about the best time to travel to Rome, compare all the things to do in Rome in summer to help you make up your mind - check out this handy guide to the city!

There are many possibilities, but my personal favourite is definitely booking a ticket for an open-air opera concert. It takes place on the Borromini Terrace in Piazza Navona. This plan also includes a guided tour of the rooftop terrace "La Grande Bellezza" and an aperitif.

Festival of dance, theatre, music and cinema 'Romaeuropa'.

Another of the Eternal City's major artistic events in autumn is Romaeuropa, recognised as the most important Italian cultural festival and whose aim for the last three decades has been to showcase contemporary art in different disciplines to the public.

The festival takes place annually during the months of September, October and November and its programme includes film screenings, dance performances, musical and theatrical performances. Nothing is missing!

The best part? The performances are held in different parts of the city, many of them outdoors, so you can enjoy the performances with the incomparable backdrop of Rome as a backdrop.

Book your ticket for an open-air opera concert

6. Explore Rome's Botanical Gardens in the autumn light

Fontana dei Tritoni in the Botanical Gardens of Rome| ©Paolo Margari
Fontana dei Tritoni in the Botanical Gardens of Rome| ©Paolo Margari

In the heart of the city lies Rome's Botanical Gardens, between Via della Lungara and the Gianicolo hill, a place away from the chaos and from which to watch the spectacle of the changing leaves of the trees in autumn. The park, one of the largest in Italy, also preserves works of art such as the staircase of the eleven fountains and the Fountain of the Tritons, worthy of adding to the list of the best fountains in Rome and which you will surely know if you book the tour of fountains and squares in Rome. It combines nature and art perfectly!

Among its main collections, the most outstanding are the centenary monumental trees, such as the Oriental plane trees, cork oaks and Himalayan cedars, and its collection of bamboos, one of the largest in Europe. The giant bamboos will impress you! Some grow up to 30 centimetres a day. Yes, you read that right, 30 centimetres!

What I liked the most is that thanks to the scenographic reconstruction of the environments, you can take a trip with your imagination through the different continents and their nature. If, after this garden, you are still hungry for more, take note of the best parks in Rome where you can watch the change of seasons.

  • Where: Largo Cristina di Svezia, 24.
  • Opening hours: April to October, 9am-6.30pm. November to March, 9am - 5.30pm.
  • Entry fee: 13 € for adults and 10 € for children from 4 to 18 years old. Children under 4 years old are free.

Book the tour of fountains and squares of Rome

7. Take a long walk through Rome's parks

Temple of Asclepius in the gardens of Villa Borghese, Rome| ©Matt Kieffer
Temple of Asclepius in the gardens of Villa Borghese, Rome| ©Matt Kieffer

Taking a pleasant stroll through Rome' s best parks and taking in the sights is one of my favourite autumn activities and what's more... It's free!

This escape to the green lungs of the city will become a little haven of peace after an exhausting day of sightseeing. Do you want to know some of the most beautiful parks?

  • The Villa Borghese gardens: the green heart of the Italian capital and one of the largest parks in Europe, it combines art and nature with great skill! You will also be able to enter the Borghese Gallery and see its best sculptures.
  • The Orange Garden is one of Rome's most romantic gardens, ideal for watching the sunset with the unmistakable scent of orange trees! It is also home to one of Rome's best kept secrets.
  • The Park of the Aqueducts: you will be amazed by its Roman aqueducts. You will get some impressive autumn photographs.
  • Villa Torlonia. This small park keeps an (open) secret: it was the residence of the dictator Benito Mussolini.

Book a guided tour of the Borghese Gallery gardens

8. Enjoy a jazz concert in the Roman auditorium

Outside view of the Auditorium Parco della Musica| ©Matteo Rho
Outside view of the Auditorium Parco della Musica| ©Matteo Rho

It may happen that during your autumn getaway to Rome the day gets up pretty bad and your body asks you to enjoy a good plan under cover. If you are travelling in November, I have the perfect activity for you: a jazz concert at the Auditorium Parco della Musica, which will elevate your experience in the Eternal City.

Every year, the Italian capital hosts the Roma Jazz Festival, one of the most important international events dedicated to this type of music. If you want to spend a special evening in the city, I suggest you book your tickets for this concert in advance, as the event has a long tradition and sells out quickly.

9. Warm up with a good cappuccino

Sant'Eustachio Il Caffè Cafeteria| ©Michiel Jelijs
Sant'Eustachio Il Caffè Cafeteria| ©Michiel Jelijs

Coffee is one of the symbols of Italy and is a must on your Italian holiday, especially if you're travelling in autumn - you'll need it to warm you up in the colder months! One of the pleasures of the Dolce Vita is enjoying a good cappuccino and gazing out of the window at the architectural gems of the city. Sounds good, doesn't it?

Here is a list of the best cafés in Rome:

  • Sant'Eustachio Il Caffè (Piazza di S. Eustachio, 82). A small place where they use an old bean roasting machine more than 70 years old and a secret formula to make the coffees. Don't try it, because you won't be able to get them to tell you!
  • La Casa Del Caffè Tazza d'Oro (Via degli Orfani, 84). Here they use beans from the most coffee-growing places in the world, such as South and Central America.
  • Caffè Greco (Via del Condotti, 86). This is my favourite place and one of the oldest active cafés in the world. Great figures such as Goethe, Byron and Keats drank this succulent drink here, and you'll enjoy a good cappuccino in a historic bar!

10. Go shopping in Rome during Black Friday!

Black Friday shopping| ©Sam Lion
Black Friday shopping| ©Sam Lion

November is one of the most eagerly awaited events of the year, Black Friday, when you can unleash the shopaholic in you because shops have spectacular sales. It's the best time of the year to shop!

Although Milan is the fashion capital of Europe, Rome has nothing to envy, so I advise you to go shopping and bring a suitcase full of Italian clothes and souvenirs.

What is the temperature in autumn in Rome?

Visiting Rome in Autumn| ©Gabriella Clare Marino
Visiting Rome in Autumn| ©Gabriella Clare Marino
  • September: The minimum temperature is 16 degrees Celsius and the maximum is 27 degrees Celsius.
  • October: the thermometer registers temperatures between 22°C and 12°C. There are usually about 7 days of rain!
  • November: the thermometer registers lows of around 8º C and highs of 17º C. Don't forget your umbrella because it usually rains for about 9 days!

Book the Rome sightseeing bus

How to pack for your autumn trip to Rome?

Packing your suitcase| ©Craig Adderley
Packing your suitcase| ©Craig Adderley

In autumn temperatures are quite cool, so I advise you to pack warm clothes in your suitcase. Be careful! In the middle of the day, especially in September, it can get quite hot, so it's best to pack a short-sleeved T-shirt and a jacket, the most useful item of clothing. Take an umbrella and a mackintosh because it rains quite often!

What should not be missing in your suitcase?

Coat -Comfortable shoes -Scarf and gloves (especially in November and December) - Umbrella and mackintosh -Jacket

In this article you have read some autumn plans but, if you are planning to travel to Rome in another season, here are the guides to the best things to do in Rome in summer, what to see and do in Rome in spring and what to do in Rome in winter. Every season has its charm!

Book a tour of Trastevere and the Jewish Ghetto

In summary, compare the different seasons for visiting Rome

  • Winter
  • December - March
  • Weather: Freezing
  • Maximum 16º C
  • Minimum 2º C

Ideal for visiting museums

  • Spring
  • March - June
  • Climate: Temperate
  • High 27º C
  • Low 4º C

Ideal for outdoor activities

  • Summer
  • June - September
  • Climate: Hot and humid
  • Maximum 31º C
  • Minimum 14º C

Ideal for outdoor activities

  • Autumn
  • September - December
  • Climate: Temperate
  • Maximum 27º C
  • Low 6º C

Ideal for outdoor activities