September sees Romans returning from their summer holidays and kids heading back to school, but as the Italian summer heat and tourist crowds begin to subside, the city of Rome slowly begins to buzz with things to do. While Rome's cultural calendar is not packed at this time of year, there are a few interesting events and festivals taking place in September, including Isola Del Cinema, Stadio Olimpico soccer games, and the Taste of Roma festival.
Rome Weather in September
With average temperatures ranging from the lower 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius) in the daytime down to about 60 degrees Fahrenheit (16 degrees Celsius) at night throughout most of the month, Roman weather in September might be some of the best the city experiences all year. However, temperatures start to drop as the month progresses, and nighttime lows can fall below 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) by the end of September.
- Average high: 81 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius)
- Average low: 61 degrees Fahrenheit (16 degrees Celsius)
Meanwhile, the nearby Mediterranean Sea has an average temperature of 75 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius) for the month, making it a great time to take a dip on your vacation. This is especially true since September is also one of the driest months in the city, getting just over 40 millimeters (1.5 inches) of rainfall over six days of the month.
What to Pack
Thanks to its Mediterranean climate, you won't need to pack many layers to stay comfortable during your trip to Rome in September. Bring plenty of shorts, T-shirts, pants, and long-sleeved shirts to accommodate for higher daytime temperatures and overnight lows and bring a light jacket in case the temperatures drop during a rainstorm. You'll also want to bring comfortable shoes, beachwear, and maybe even hiking gear depending on what you plan to do during your trip.
September Events in Rome
From watching movies on an outdoor screen to attending arts and crafts fairs across the city, there's no shortage of fun things to do in Rome in September. While the throngs of summer tourists may have left the city and local schoolchildren have mostly returned to their studies, you'll still find plenty of great events all month long.
- Movies at Isola Del Cinema: Widescreen movies are shown outdoors during Isola Del Cinema on Tiberina Island almost every night in the summer as part of Estate Romana, or Roman summer, which also includes concerts, theater, and other cultural events.
- Stadio Olimpico Soccer Games: The home stadium of both of Rome's soccer teams—AS Roma (crimson and gold) and SS Lazio (baby blue and white)—70,000-seat Stadio Olimpico is one of the world's most famous sports venues. Games typically occur on Sundays; tickets can be purchased online, over the phone, at the stadium, or at the teams' official stores throughout the city. All but the most diehard fans should avoid the Curva Nord and Curva Sud sections of the stadium—the realm of "ultra" fans, these areas can get frighteningly rowdy, and are definitely not suited to children.
- Gay Village Street Fair: For LGBTQ residents, visitors, and their allies, Rome's Gay Village has a celebratory street fair running from late May to early September in the Testaccio neighborhood. Music, dancing, and food and drinks booths all contribute to the festive atmosphere.
- Imperium Festival: On or close to September 1, Gay Village usually hosts the Imperium Festival with DJs, dancing, and drinking, but the event date changes year to year.
- Arts and Crafts Fairs: Several arts and crafts fairs take place in Rome in September. There is an art fair along the street of Via Margutta, an area known for its collection of hip and high-art studios that was also home to film director Federico Fellini and where parts of "Roman Holiday" were filmed. Usually the last week of September, there is another crafts fair in Via dell'Orso near Piazza Navona.
- RomaEuropa Festival: Beginning in late September, the RomaEuropa Festival features cutting-edge local and international performances of dance, theatre, music, and film, as well as visual arts installations at venues across the city.
- Taste of Roma: On the third weekend of September, sample food from some of Rome's top chefs, take Italian cooking courses, and watch live demonstrations of some of the latest culinary trends in Italy on the grounds of the Auditorium Parco della Musica in Rome's Flaminio neighborhood.
- Letture d'Estate: From June 30 through September 1 each year in the Gardens of Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome, this cultural event—roughly translated as "Summer Reading" in English—is centered around reading beside the river at Castel Sant'Angelo but also features games, music, and relaxing activities perfect for the whole family.
September Travel Tips
- Although the summer tourist crowds have gone, September is the high season for tourism in Rome. However, hotels typically offer mid-season rates for the first six days of the month.
- Since restaurants often close in August and open back up in September and it's the high season for travel, you'll find long wait times at most establishments, few of which take reservations.
- Avoid tourist restaurants and travel off the beaten paths to find local spots that won't have as long of wait times—but they will often have even more authentic Roman cuisine.
- Figs and grapes are both coming into season in September, making it a great time to sample fig gelato, fresh figs with prosciutto on pizza Bianca, or local wines.
- You'll find larger crowds and longer lines at must-see attractions in the city; consider booking skip-the-line tickets or just passing by famous landmarks instead of going inside.