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July in Italy: Holidays, Festivals, and Other Events

Siena Palio

July is the time for music, and there are tons of festivals throughout Italy this month to keep all kinds of music lovers happy. Some of the best are highlighted below.

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July in Italy: Holidays, Festivals, and Other Events

Siena Palio

July 2 – Palio Horse Race, Siena

The first of two runnings of Siena’s Palio takes place on 2 July — tickets for this event (as well as hotels in the area) are very hard to come by if you haven’t planned well in advance.

Mid-July – Festa del Redentore, Venice

In Venice, the Festa del Redentore (Festival of the Redeemer) in mid-July celebrates the Feast of the Redeemer and the end of the plague in 1577 with the opening of the Thanksgiving Bridge to Giudecca and a major fireworks display over Piazza San Marco.

Mid-July – Jazz and More in Umbria

Umbria Jazz, probably the most important jazz event in Europe takes place in mid-July in Perugia. Concurrently, Spoleto hosts the Festival Dei Due Mondi (Festival of Two Worlds), one of the world’s best known and longest running summer music, arts, and theater festival.

Summer Music Festivals in Italy

The arena in Verona
Verona’s Roman-era Arena is a popular place for summer performances

The following music festivals typically take place throughout the month of July, if not the entire summer.

Opera in Verona

If you’ve never seen Verona’s arena, which easily rivals Rome’s Colosseum, July is the perfect time to visit. The annual Verona Opera Festival, which runs throughout the summer, is in full swing in July.

Music in Rome

The capital has numerous concerts in July. The Teatro dell’Opera di Roma offers the opera-archeology combo at the Baths of Caracalla. Meanwhile, Rock in Roma features concerts from Italian and international rock and rap artists at various locations in the city, primarily at the Ippodromo delle Capannelle, but also at the Circus Maximus and the Auditorium Parco della Musica. The latter also hosts its own festival – Roma Summer Fest.

On the smaller, more alternative scale is the Incontra Il Mondo (Encounter the World) festival set among the Roman pines of the Villa Ada park. Here you can see acts ranging from reggae to metal, depending on the night.

Torino Estate Reale, Torino (Turin)

Classical music, ballet, theater, and other sophisticated performances make up the Torino Estate Reale, a music festival that takes place in Torino (Turin) at the Piazzetta Reale.  This festival is part of a grander collection of performances grouped under the heading of Palchi Reali (Royal Stages), which puts on shows at various royal residences around the Piemonte region.

Puccini Festival, Tuscany

The long-running Festival Puccini, held in Torre del Lago and Viareggio, is considered one of Italy’s most refined opera events. It celebrates the works of Tuscan son Giacomo Puccini (born in Lucca in 1858). Concerts begin on 6 July and run through August.

Saldi – Summer Sales

If you love to shop, July is a great time to be in Italy. The much-anticipated summer sales (saldi) usually begin around the first week of July and go until mid-August — or until shoppers and shop owners have cleared out last season’s goods.

During the first week of sales, items will be immediately discounted from between 30 to 50 percent off the original price, with discounts getting deeper with each passing week so as to move the old merchandise and get ready for the new. Just about every place with something to sell, from small boutiques to designer outlets, gets in on the saldi bandwagon in order to capture shoppers’ attention.

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