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Rome in Spring – What to Expect, Weather, Best Things to Do & More!

Planning to visit Rome in spring but aren’t sure what to expect? You’ve come to the right place! In this article I have outlined everything you need to know to plan the perfect spring visit to Rome.

The Eternal City is one of the most popular destinations in Italy, and rightly so. Every cobbled street is imbued with ancient history, waiting for travellers to come visit it.

Rome is also home to delicious cuisine, beautiful architecture and friendly locals. It’s a gorgeous city that you can visit at any time of year, but spring time in Rome is the best.

I spent a few months living in Rome, and can confirm that the spring months, when the days start getting warmer and longer, are the perfect time to visit Rome.

In this guide you will find all my top tips for a perfect spring trip to Rome. Including what weather you can expect, any spring holidays to plan for, the best things to do in Rome in spring, what to pack and more.

So without further ado, let’s dive in and start planning the best spring in Rome trip!

Chilling by the Colosseum in Rome

Chilling by the Colosseum in Rome

Weather in Rome in spring

Weather at this time of year in Rome is mild.

As the Roman winter fades away you can expect sunny weather, with temperatures in April averaging at 14°C, while May sees higher temperatures, rising to around 20°C. 

It won’t be as hot as Rome in summer, but it can actually get pretty nice in May, with highs of 24°C being quite common.

It’s an idyllic time of year to spend exploring the city. Days are generally marked by sunny weather, with only a few showers.

Watching the sunset over the Vatican and Ponte Sant'Angelo from Ponte Umberto in Rome

Watching the sunset over the Vatican and Ponte Sant’Angelo from Ponte Umberto in Rome

Tips for visiting Rome in spring, what to expect:

Before we dive into the best things to do in Rome in spring, I wanted to share with you some useful tips on making the most of Rome during the spring months.

How to get around Rome in spring

When it comes to sightseeing, apart from the actual tourist sights themselves, the next most important thing you should plan is how to get around.

Luckily, spring is a gorgeous time of year in Rome. It’s not too hot yet (just wait ‘till summer…) and the weather is perfect for strolling around and getting to places on foot.

Walking around the historic centre is particularly easy, with distances that aren’t too taxing on your feet.

However, if you want to explore a little further afield, or just want to get between places as quickly as possible, you have options.

The beautiful Trevi fountain in Rome

The beautiful Trevi fountain in Rome

One of these includes e-scooters, such as Lime. These are good for short distances, but I would recommend avoiding Rome’s cobbled lanes – you’ll be in for a pretty bumpy ride if you take a scooter along one of these!

Scooter (as in a moped) sharing service Cooltra is a more comprehensive way to get around. If you can drive a scooter, that is. Again, it’s good for short distances.

Rome’s public transport is pretty good and can take you almost everywhere you want to go, so you may think there’s no need to get around via scooter.

And it’s fine to use, though maybe not on particularly warm days (I’m talking late spring), as it can get rather sweaty on both buses and the metro.

Plus, when it’s nice weather, you may just want to stick in the sunshine rather than being cooped up on public transport with loads of other passengers.

Scootering around Rome - that's the Colosseum behind us!

Scootering around Rome – that’s the Colosseum behind us!

Packing suggestions for Rome in Spring

I’d recommend light, airy clothing. It’s starting to get pretty warm in the Italian capital this time of year, so having clothing that’s able to be as cooling in the daytime as it is warm in the evening is a good idea.

A sweater or light jacket is a good idea for cooler weather in spring. A wide brimmed hat is not only the perfect Rome Instagram photo prop, but great for giving you some shade, too!

If you’re planning on hitting up churches or sites in the Vatican, then you’ll need to cover up. The rules for these places are no shoulders, stomachs, or legs above the knee on show.

For this, avoid revealing clothing or pack a shawl or light scarf that you can easily whip on when you visit a religious building.

Walking along Ponte Sant' Angelo in Rome, with Castel Sant' Angelo in the background

Walking along Ponte Sant’ Angelo in Rome, with Castel Sant’ Angelo in the background

Events and holidays to plan around

Easter week is a busy time of year in Rome. Before this, you could choose to be in town for Carnival, which falls in late February or early March.

It won’t be a huge event like Carnival in Venice, but it’s still a fun festivity also in Rome. People dress up in costumes, bakeries serve traditional sweet treats, and there’s a lot of festivities to be had in the city streets.

Easter weekend is a big deal. Expect religious parades and masses taking place across the city’s churches. The day after Easter, called Pasquetta (literally “Little Easter”), is a public holiday when most things will be closed.

It’s a family day: people head outside, enjoying picnics in the city’s parks, or days spent lounging at the beach. 

Liberation Day (25th April) is another national holiday when a lot of businesses in the capital will be closed. There are often events put on throughout the city to commemorate the date.

Wandering along the cute cobbled streets of Rome, Italy

Rome tours to join

Having lived in Rome, I can say it’s a fairly easy city to wander around and discover alone. However, even if you visit in shoulder season, the touristy areas can be very chaotic, with tourist traps waiting at every corner.

If you want to relax during your Rome spring trip, and have someone else take care of the planning hassle, plus have a local guide teach you about the beauties of Rome, here are some of the most popular Rome tours.

Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel: Tour – This popular tour is a must if you want to visit the Vatican Museum. Having a local guide explain what you’re seeing is key to understanding this unique place.

Click here to book your Vatican Museum & Sistine Chapel tour!

Rome: Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill Priority Tickets – You don’t want to spend hours queueing under the sun, so make sure to purchase priority tickets to the Colosseum!

Click here to book your Colosseum tickets and skip the line!

Rome: Street Food Tour with Local Guide – Italians take food very seriously, and the best way to discover true Roman cuisine is with a local!

Check out prices and availability for a Rome street food tour here!

Rome: 3-Hour Bike Tour – If you don’t fancy walking, this bike tour will take you to discover all the highlights of Rome on two wheels!

Click here to book your Rome bike tour!

View over the Roman Forum and the Colosseum from the Campidoglio

View over the Roman Forum and the Colosseum from the Campidoglio

Best things to do in Rome in spring

Have aperitivo & enjoy the sunset at a rooftop terrace

One of the best ways to spend time in Rome in spring is to head to a rooftop terrace for an aperitivo with a city view. There’s nothing quite like relaxing, drink in hand, with the ancient city unfolding below you.

One great example is the AcquaRoof Terrazza Molinari, a small rooftop bar with an excellent view across the rooftops. And despite the awesome view, the prices are surprisingly affordable.

View over Rome from AcquaRoof Terrazza Molinari

View over Rome from AcquaRoof Terrazza Molinari

Eat delicious gelato 

As the weather warms up in Rome in spring, it’s obviously the time to start sampling gelato.

My personal favourite is Gelateria della Palma – and it will be your favourite if you like your eating establishments to come with a whole lot of choice. This place boasts over 100 flavours of gelato!

And once you’ve made your decision, the gelateria is well placed to stroll around, gelato in hand, to see the Pantheon and Rome’s other top historical sights.

Exploring the Pantheon in Rome

Exploring the Pantheon in Rome

Chill at some of the parks in Rome 

Where better to soak up the beautiful spring air in Rome than in one of its many city parks?

While you may be thinking that the city is all about ancient sites and Renaissance churches, there’s actually a lot of green urban spaces in Rome to discover, too. 

One of these is Terrazza del Pincio – great for views and people-watching. There’s also the Giardino degli Aranci (the “Orange Garden”) up on the Aventine Hill, one of the famous seven hills of Rome.

Another great spot for Rome skyline views is the Belvedere del Gianicolo, which is situated on Janiculum Hill. Take a picnic, find a spot and enjoy the vistas.

Enjoying the sunset over Rome from Giardino degli Aranci

Enjoying the sunset over Rome from Giardino degli Aranci

Visit the Vatican and the Vatican Gardens

Spring is an ideal time of year to visit the Vatican Gardens – and the Vatican in general. The tourist crowds of Italian summer aren’t here yet, for one thing, so it won’t be anywhere near as busy.

In the gardens, you’ll be able to see the rich green pines and cedar trees, next to the rainbow of spring blooms in the flowerbeds. You can really appreciate the changing of the seasons in this historical garden.

One thing to note is even if there aren’t as many tourists as in summer, you should still book entrance online beforehand, so that you can skip the huge queue that is always present.

Click here to purchase your Vatican Museum & Sistine Chapel Entrance!

The Basilica di San Pietro and main square of the Vatican in Rome

The Basilica di San Pietro and main square of the Vatican in Rome

Explore the famous sights of Rome

Visiting attractions like the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, the Roman Forum and Piazza Navona should be feature on every Italy itinerary and bucket list regardless of the season.

I couldn’t put together a guide to the best things to do in Rome, whatever the season, and not include them. That said, spring is an especially good time to sightsee in Rome.

It’s not too hot yet, meaning you can easily walk around the city without sweating too much, and take in the sights. The summer crowds aren’t here yet either, so you can see the attractions without having to queue as long.

However, if you want to avoid queueing make sure to purchase skip-the-line entrance to all the attractions you want to visit beforehand.

Click here to purchase your priority tickets to the Colosseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill!

Admiring the view over the Fori Romani in Rome

Admiring the view over the Fori Romani in Rome

Explore Villa Borghese

Arguably the best park (and definitely the biggest) in Rome is Villa Borghese. This is a classic hotspot to chill out and take a break from Rome’s busy streets.

When spring arrives, the park bursts into bloom, with blossom and flowers taking centre stage – and all to the soundtrack of birdsong.

If that wasn’t enough, this lovely park also features some amazing views out over the Rome skyline, including the Piazza del Popolo.

Wandering around the gardens of Villa Borghese in Rome

Wandering around the gardens of Villa Borghese in Rome

View of Piazza del Popolo from Villa Borghese

View of Piazza del Popolo from Villa Borghese

Enjoy a meal outdoors

While winter is far too cold, and summer is super hot, spring is a perfect happy medium of weather and temperatures to enjoy eating al fresco. This is like a national pastime in Italy, and nowhere more so than in Rome.

In the city’s many piazzas you’ll find a whole load of restaurants flanking the open spaces, all with terrace seating, making for the perfect place to sit for a while, enjoy a bite to eat, and simply watch life go by with a refreshing drink (or a coffee). 

One great example is Osteria da Fortunata. Situated on Piazza della Cancelleria, close to Campo dei’ Fiori, it’s an easygoing spot with affordable drinks and handmade pasta dishes made using organic, local ingredients.

The market in Campo dei Fiori in Rome

The market in Campo dei Fiori in Rome

Sunset over the rooftops of Rome from Up Sunset Bar

Sunset over the rooftops of Rome from Up Sunset Bar

See the beautiful flowers at the Spanish Steps

The Spanish Steps are a must-see landmark on every Rome itinerary at any time of year, but in spring they become an even more beautiful destination.

Every year, for the last 60 years, spring has been marked in the city by the arrival of the azaleas on the Spanish steps. 

Called Mostra delle Azalee, the steps see 3,000 azaleas burst into a carpet of purple, and which celebrate the arrival of spring. This occurs from mid to late April all the way through to the first week of May.

Prior to being transported to the Spanish Steps, the azaleas spend the year being cultivated and cared for at the capital’s plant nurseries.

For the last 100 years or so, thousands of azaleas have been cultivated here, and they are returned each year after decorating the steps.

It’s part of a larger, city-wide Festa della Primavera or “Spring Festival”. This sees concerts, exhibitions and other events take place around various venues in Rome. 

Wandering up the famous Spanish Steps towards Trinità dei Monti in Rome

Wandering up the famous Spanish Steps towards Trinità dei Monti in Rome

Taste Italian Easter food 

Easter food in Italy is a huge tradition, and of course, in Rome that’s no different. Throughout Rome in spring you’ll be able to find plenty of interesting things to eat.

Let’s start with the sweet stuff. Colomba is Easter cake, and although it’s traditional to the Lombardy region, you can find it in Rome, too. Similar to panettone, it’s flavoured with lemon and topped with almonds and sugar.

The name translates to “dove”, which makes sense given the shape of the cake. Uova di Pasqua are Italian chocolate eggs, sometimes with little treats hidden inside, that are enjoyed at this time of year.

Wrapped in colourful foil, these are an adopted tradition, but no less delicious – especially when brought from one of Rome’s traditional chocolatiers, such as the venerable Moriondo e Gariglio.

In terms of savoury things to eat, you should opt to seek out seasonal food such as carciofi alla romana. These artichokes are stuffed with herbs and cooked to tender perfection. 

Eating spaghetti carbonara in Rome

Eating spaghetti carbonara in Rome

Explore the streets of Trastevere at night 

And if you’re looking for ways to spend an evening in Rome in spring, look no further than Trastevere. It’s an ideal spot to head to if you like your evenings lively.

Wandering around the cobbled streets of Trastevere is a highlight on any Italy itinerary. There are plenty of bars and trattorias to choose from where you can grab an aperitivo or dinner.

Just be sure to book ahead where you can – it can get very busy, and no one wants to be stuck in a queue outside while they’re hungry!

Trastevere is also a popular stop on many Rome by night tours. If you don’t fancy wandering around alone at night, you can join one and have a local guide show you all the best spots!

View over Castel Sant'Angelo and the Tiber River at night

View over Castel Sant’Angelo and the Tiber River at night

Should you visit Rome in spring?

Absolutely! In my opinion, spring is by far the best time to visit Rome. It’s obviously busier than autumn and winter, but it won’t be as bad as the summer tourist crowds.

Thanks to the more clement weather you can enjoy spending time outdoors, walking through the cobbled streets of Rome, taking in all the amazing historical sights that poets and artists have written about over the centuries.

You might still risk some bad weather days, but the balance with less crowds and cheaper prices of shoulder season makes it worth it.

Exploring Piazza Navona in Rome

Exploring Piazza Navona in Rome

Where to stay in Rome in spring

There are lots of amazing places to stay in Rome. You could choose a hotel near the Pantheon, or one near the Colosseum, or any of these cozy Rome AirBnbs.

However if you’re visiting in spring, here are my top picks for every budget. 

Budget: Palladini HostelThis hostel is super central, close to the train station and all the action of Rome, with spacious dorms and a lively atmosphere.

Click here to book your stay at Palladini Hostel!

Mid-range: Tridente Rooms – The rooms of this bnb are simple but spacious, and it’s right next to Villa Borghese, my favourite park in Rome.

Check out prices and availability at Tridente Rooms here!

Luxury: Hotel Eden – Dorchester Collection – Perfect if you want to treat yourself, this hotel is beautifully decorated and very conveniently located in the centre of Rome.

Don’t miss out, book your stay at Hotel Eden here!

The beautiful facade of the Trevi fountain in Rome

The beautiful facade of the Trevi fountain in Rome

 

Final thoughts on visiting Rome in spring

There you have it, the ultimate guide to visiting Rome in spring! Have you ever spent spring in Rome before? How did you find it? Let me know in the comments below!

Having lived in Milan, Sardinia and Rome, as well as having travelled extensively across Italy also to other destinations like Cinque Terre, Tuscany, Trentino, Matera and Sicily, I can confidently say that spring in Rome is one of the most incredible things you will ever experience.

Rome is always a wonderful experience, but seeing it come alive after the cold winter months, can make it all the more special. As the days start becoming warmer and longer, it gives you the opportunity to properly enjoy the city.

I hope you find my Rome spring guide useful in planning your own trip to Rome in spring! If you have any questions, just let me know in the comments below.

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