The second edition of National Bicycle Day takes place on Sunday 8 May in Rome and over 2,000 towns and cities across Italy. Organised by the ministry of environment in collaboration with the Italian Cycling Federation and local councils, the initiative is designed to encourage people to swap their cars for bicycles, even for one day, as an alternative and environmentally-friendly means of transport.

From 11.30 to 12.00 on the Campidoglio, the Bicity 2011 prizes will be awarded to eight towns which have the longest exclusive cycling and eight towns with the biggest increase in designated bicycle lanes since 2009.

There will be mini-courses in road safety, and plans for future bike-sharing projects in the capital will be unveiled. Specators can enjoy displays of bicycle virtuosity with performances from bmx and mountain bikers along Via dei Fori Imperiali from 12.00-17.00.

The event is open to all and for programme details, including a list of historic centres, archaeological sites and other areas open for cyclists, see the environment ministry