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!