Italian New Year’s Eve: what the italians do

Italian Christmas Traditions - Italian Side
Italian Holiday Season Traditions
December 19, 2018
Italian New Year’s Eve: what the italians do - Italian Side

Italians use to celebrate the new year’s eve in many different ways. It depends on their ages or habits.
The younger people prefer to travel and visit a foreign city where spend the most special night of the year, or they may spend the night in the squares where the local administrations are used to organize special events.
The older, instead, choose to stay at home having dinner with friends or family and watching TV.

The big dinner

The Italians who decide to spend the New Year’s Eve with family usually have a “cenone” (big dinner). They can do the countdown together and have a toast.
Television shows are broadcasted to entertain those who choose to spend this night at home. This year Matera holds the great concert organized by Rai, the Italian public television, and it will be live covered and broadcasted on the TV.
At the conclusion of the dinner people are used to play “tombola” or others Christmas games, such as “cucù” or “sette e mezzo”, while they are waiting for midnight.

The “Veglione”

Others use to celebrate the New Year with friends. They take part in a “veglione di Capodanno” (New Year’s Eve party) usually held in a club or in a private house. They wait for the midnight eating, dancing, listening live music and chatting with other people. Many restaurants and clubs organize special events for families too, so people may have fun instead of waste time cooking for the “cenone“.

The Italian Squares

As anywhere in the world, the Italian squares are the real hearts of the “waiting for New Year” celebrations. The local administrators are used to organize concerts in the biggest square of their city. In this way they may entertain both the citizens, who can not leave their home or who don’t like to take part in a “veglione“, and the tourists.
Milan, Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples, Matera attract lots of people, each of them offers great and special events.


At the end, it sounds unbelievable, there are people who don’t like to celebrate the incoming new year, don’t wait for the midnight and prefer to go to sleep early after a light dinner.

Do you have any peculiar habit or family tradition for the New Year’s Eve?

Finally, we wish you “buon anno!.