May 1st, Labor Day Celebrations – €1 Entry Fees Across Italy

On May 1st, Labor Day in Italy, businesses and schools are closed and many visitors are concerned about what to view on this day. Good news – there’s plenty to see – and it’s going to cost you far less! The Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali – the Ministry for Arts and Culture, also known as MiBAC – has recently announced some exciting news. Despite “removing” the Colosseo Combo from the year’s April Culture Week, there will – once again – be €1 entry fees to many of the State-operated museums on Labor Day. And yes, these €1 entry fees include Castel Sant’Angelo, Galleria Borghese, and many other incredible sites and museums.


This is NOT just happening in Rome. No, many sites all across Italy will have €1 entry fees. On their website, they highlight the following: the Museum “birthplace of Gabriele D’Annunzio” in Pescara, the Archaeological Park of Herakleia Policoro (MT), the Archaeological Park of the Ionian Sybaris Cassano (CS), the Royal Palace of Caserta, the Mausoleum of Theodoric at Ravenna, The National Archaeological Museum of Cividale del Friuli (UD), the Galleria Borghese in Rome, the National Gallery of Palazzo Spinola in Genoa, the Museum of Palazzo Ducale in Milan, the Galleria Nazionale delle Marche in Urbino, the Archaeological Museum of Venafro (IS ), the Egyptian Museum in Turin, Castello Svevo in Bari, the area Archelogica Nuraghe Losa Abbasanta (OR), the Accademia Gallery in Florence, the National Gallery of Umbria in Perugia, and the Accademia Gallery in Venice.

And there are many, many more opportunities for visitors and locals on May 1. In and near Rome these options include:

  • Area Archeologica del Porto di Traiano –FIUMICINO   9,30-14,00
  • Necropoli di Porto – Isola Sacra  – FIUMICINO  9,00-19,45
  • Castello di Giulio II   entries at 10.00, 12.00, 15.00 e 17.00
  • Complesso Archeologico di Malborghetto   9,00-19,30
  • Istituto Nazionale per la Grafica   9,00-19,30
  • Pantheon (free)  8,00 – 20,00
  • Villa di Livia  9,00-19,30
  • Galleria Corsini   8,30-19,30
  • Galleria d’Arte Antica – Palazzo Barberini  8,30-19,30
  • Galleria Spada  8,30-19,30
  • Museo Nazionale dell’Alto Medioevo  9,00-19,30
  • Museo della Via Ostiense  9,00-19,30
  • Museo Nazionale delle Arti e Tradizioni Popolari  9,00-19,30
  • Museo Nazionale Etrusco di Villa Giulia  8,30 – 19,30
  • Museo e Galleria Borghese   8,30-19,30
  • Museo Nazionale degli Strumenti Musicali  8,30-19,30
  • Museo Nazionale del Palazzo di Venezia  8,30-19,30
  • Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant’Angelo  9,00-19,00
  • Museo Nazionale Romano – Palazzo Massimo alle Terme  9,00-19,45
  • Museo Nazionale Preistorico ed Etnografico “L. Pigorini”  9,00-19,30
  • Parco Archeologico delle Tombe della Via Latina  9,00-19,45
  • Scavi di Ostia Antica e Museo     8,30-19,00
  • Terme di Caracalla  9,00-19,45
  • Tomba di Cecilia Metella  9,00-19,30
  • Palazzo Altemps   9,00-19,45
  • Circuito Archeologico di Roma (Anfiteatro Flavio-Colosseo, Palatino, Foro Romano, Palazzo Massimo, Palazzo Altemps, Caracalla, Crypta Balbi, Terme di Diocleziano, Cecilia Metella, Villa dei Quintili)   9,00-19,45
  • Circuito del Museo Nazionale Romano (Palazzo Massimo, Palazzo Altemps, Terme di Diocleziano, Crypta Balbi)   9,00-19,45
  • Crypta Balbi  9,00-19,45
  • Museo Nazionale Romano – Terme di Diocleziano   9,00-19,45
  • Villa d’Este – TIVOLI  8,30 -19,45
  • Area Archeologica di Villa Adriana – TIVOLI from 9,00-13,00

So even Villa D’Este and  Villa Adriana are on the list! Some of the hours are slightly different than their “normal” hours of operation – but what a great opportunity. For a complete list of ALL sites in Italy, head to the Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali website. You can also get more information by calling toll free in Italy: 800 991 199.


The Concert at Piazza Porta San Giovanni

If museums are not your passion, then you might head to the free concert at Piazza Porta San Giovanni. I’ve been and it’s quite an event. Perhaps it caters to the younger set (well, younger then me!). My wife and I were certainly the oldest folks in the crowd… and it was packed! They close the metro station at San Giovanni so you, and the hordes, ride to a nearby stop and hike in. The stage is located adjacent to the Basilica of St. John Lateran which makes for an interesting and slightly paradoxical atmosphere.

The concert event dates back to 1990 when three major labor unions in Italy (CGIL, CISL and UIL) decided to hold a concert in celebration of  the worker’s day. The concert begins about 15:00 and runs until after midnight, features as many as 40-50 acts, and attracts hundreds of thousands of people. Primarily the artists are Italian, and Italian music is the focus, but in recent years, international artists such as Iron Maiden, Alanis Morissette, and Robert Plant have performed at the event. It’s quite an event… glad we experienced it – not sure when or if I’ll be going back! Here’s their website …  and yes, it’s seems even more crowded than what you see in the video.

Concert photo from wikimedia commons


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