Christmas in Rome is a magical time filled with traditions, festivities, and a sense of joy that can be felt throughout the city. As the holiday season comes to an end, Rome bids farewell to Christmas in a grand and memorable way.
The Epiphany: The Final Celebration
The conclusion of Christmas in Rome culminates with the celebration of the Epiphany on January 6th. This religious feast marks the visit of the Three Wise Men to baby Jesus and is an important event in Roman Catholic tradition.
Piazza Navona: The Epiphany Fair
One of the highlights of how Christmas ends in Rome is the Epiphany Fair held at Piazza Navona. This historic square transforms into a bustling marketplace filled with various stalls selling sweets, toys, crafts, and other festive goodies.
The fair is particularly famous for its traditional Italian Christmas treats like panettone, torrone, and pandoro. Visitors can indulge their taste buds in these delicious delights while enjoying live performances by street artists and musicians.
La Befana: The Good Witch
A significant part of the Epiphany celebrations revolves around La Befana, a mythical character who brings gifts to children. According to Italian folklore, La Befana is an old witch who flies on her broomstick during the night of January 5th, leaving presents for well-behaved children.
In Rome, children eagerly await La Befana’s arrival as she fills their stockings with small gifts and sweets. Many families also gather together to enjoy a special meal on this day.
Taking Down Decorations
As Christmas draws to a close, it’s time to bid farewell to all the festive decorations that adorned the streets, shops, and homes. In Rome, the traditional date for taking down Christmas decorations is January 6th, after the Epiphany.
It is customary for families to gather and remove the decorations together. This process symbolizes the end of the Christmas season and the beginning of a new year. The streets of Rome gradually return to their usual charm, but the memories of Christmas linger in the hearts of its residents.
Christmas in Rome ends with a joyous celebration of the Epiphany and the charming traditions associated with it. The Epiphany Fair at Piazza Navona and the story of La Befana add a unique touch to this festive season’s culmination.
As Romans take down their decorations on January 6th, they bid farewell to Christmas with gratitude for cherished moments spent with loved ones. The spirit of Christmas continues to inspire hope and warmth long after its physical presence fades away.