Haavas H1 1920 x 116 ITA
Haavas H1 1920 x 116 ITA
Haavas H1 1920 x 116 ITA
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Italy's hidden wonders open on 15-16 October for FAI Autumn Days

FAI opens historic sites across Italy on 15-16 October.

More than 700 noted Italian buildings and historic sites open their doors to the public for free on the weekend of 15-16 October as part of the Giornate FAI d'Autunno.

The annual autumn open days initiative organised by Fondo Ambiente Italiano (FAI) will allow entry into palaces, villas, castles, churches, abbeys, parks, gardens, towers, theatres and libraries in 350 locations across Italy.

Many of the participating sites are not normally open to the public or are difficult to visit.

Some of the Rome treats in store include guided tours of the Basilica di S. Croce in Gerusalemme which, according to Christian tradition, was consecrated circa 325 to house the relics of the Passion of Jesus Christ brought to Rome from the Holy Land by Empress Helena, mother of Roman Emperor Constantine I.

Other highlights include the Santo Spirito in Sassia complex, dating to eighth century and considered among the oldest hospitals in Europe; the hidden cloisters of S. Cosimato, part of the Nuovo Regina Margherita hospital in Trastevere; and the 16th-century Palazzo Firenze, once the property of the Florentine Medici dynasty and today the Italian headquarters of UNESCO.

For those who wish to take a day-trip outside the capital, there are tours of the park of Villa Gregoriana in Tivoli as well as dozens of breathtaking sites in the regions surrounding Rome.

Similar to Britain’s National Trust, FAI works to preserve and promote Italy’s cultural heritage through education, restoration and annual open day initiative which introduced in 1993.

For full details see the FAI website which lists the participating sites region by region. Visits are free but donations are encouraged.

Cover image: Complesso di Santo Spirito in Sassia, Corsie Sistine. Photo Giovanni Formosa / FAI.
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Marymount - International School Rome
Marymount - International School Rome
Marymount - International School Rome
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