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I really like visiting Rome. There is so much to see, yet it doesn’t really feel touristy to me. Maybe that’s because we always spend most of our time visiting friends and family or eating out – or a combination of the two :) But depending on the season we always spend at least one afternoon in downtown Rome and/or go to a cute lake outside of Rome (Lago di Martignano, the little one right by Lago di Bracciano). When we are there during Christmas or New Year’s we have never missed a visit to the Christmas market at Piazza Navona. You should check it out if you’re ever there. I think the market opens early December and ends early January. It’s really pretty!

Since we always have a rental car when we are in Rome, there’s the “small” issue of parking. Some years we have driven right downtown. Not a good idea, because only few people have a permit to do that. There’s nobody checking the permits, but there are cameras… And if I remember correctly, the rental company charged us something like $50 for our ticket and their fees. Ever since, we have reverted to parking close to the Castel Sant’Angelo and just walking wherever we need to go. Castel Sant’Angelo is one of the very first monuments Marco and I visited together when I started going to Rome with him. It’s such a beautiful castle. I always have to snap a few shots when we park the car there. Gorgeous!

Anyways, from there it’s maybe a 5-10 minute walk and you’re at Piazza Navona. The Christmas market there is not exactly like you know it from Germany (meaning with Gluehwein ;)) and they actually sell more Befanas than Santas from what I can tell. In case you didn’t know, Befana is the witch who bring candy to kids on January 6th in Italy. From what I understand it’s similar to Nikolaus in Germany on December 6th. Anyways, there’s also fair food, a carousel, scarves, hats, and, this being Rome, of course pretty monuments that are lit so beautifully at night. There are some pics below and more on my Facebook page. I think it’s totally worth a visit! This year we went there before buying fireworks and heading to the New Year’s party.

Castel Sant'Angelo

Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona

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