Someone actually owns this balcony overlooking Piazza Navona…

Someone actually owns this balcony overlooking Piazza Navona.

Christmas Market in Piazza Navona

This year, since we ended up staying in Rome for Christmas, I couldn’t wait to take in as many sights and sounds of the season as my increasingly-large pregnant belly would allow (parking is a nightmare, therefore a simple visit can involve a lot of walking).

During the holidays, seasonal markets fill piazzas across the city. But Navona is home to one of the largest and most popular – especially because of its vast selection of artiginale (hand-crafted) nativity scenes, ornaments, and decorations. Aside from being an obvious attraction for the holiday tourists, a visit to the Christmas market in Piazza Navona is also a significant part of the holidays for many Roman families. In fact, I ran into one of my colleagues there with his family who told me a jaunt through the market on Christmas morning is part of their tradition each year.

This morning was a bit grey and dreary, but the atmosphere was nonetheless bustling and upbeat: a maze of colorful balloons, street musicians, carnival games, and ciambelle (donuts) as big as your head. ’Tis the season.

Buon Natale a tutti!