Liberation Day (Anniversario della Liberazione or Festa della Liberazione) is a national holiday in Italy commemorating the liberation of the country by Allied forces and the Italian resistance at the conclusion of WWII. It is observed on April 25th.
The celebration is meant to honor all those who perished during the war, from troops fighting on the front lines to civilians who died as a result of the conflict. During the war, it is estimated that about half a million Italians died.
The lives of those who battled Mussolini’s army as well as the Nazis as partisans in the Italian Resistance are particularly celebrated.
The liberation also marked the end of Italy’s 23-year fascist reign.
The day is commemorated with celebrations in places all around Italy. Marching bands, political rallies, and music concerts could all be part of the festivities.
Since 1946, it has been a national holiday in Italy.
The singing of the traditional ballad ‘Bella Ciao,’ about a partisan who died for Italian freedom and whose only wish was to be buried in the mountains under the shade of a beautiful flower, is a popular custom.
The day begins in Rome with a ceremony at the Altare della Patria in the morning, which is attended by the Italian president. In addition, the National Partisan Association of Italy (ANPI) organizes parades across the country to commemorate the day.
Speeches, wreath-laying, and the singing of Bella Ciao, the anti-fascist resistance anthem, are common features of these ceremonies.
All state schools and offices, as well as many shops, will be closed on this day. While certain tourist destinations will remain open, municipal attractions such as museums and monuments will be closed, and public transportation may be limited.
Because Liberation Day falls within a week before the May Day holiday on May 1st, Italians have traditionally taken extra vacation days to create a holiday week during this time.