Incredible costumes, perfect arias, a warm breeze and a regal setting is what you'll experience at the Macerata Opera Festival. The annual event takes place from mid-July through the beginning of August and draws an international crowd to this central Marche hill town. Dress up or go casual and enjoy an evening of classic opera music.

The open-air theater is called the Sferisterio, a beautiful neo-classical arena outlined with columns that boasts perfect acoustics. The festival was inaugurated in 1829 and is still going strong. Operas change annually but might include classics like Aida, La Traviata and Tosca. A few other lyrical concerts are part of the program, as well.

Another new initiative is the GustaMuseo program. If you eat in one of the participating restaurants, you'll get a discount on the Museum Card for Macerata. If you've already bought the museum card, you'll get a discount on your meal instead. See the Sferisterio website for a listing, and to buy opera tickets online.

Been there? Done that? Share your experience and tips!

Haven't visited yet? Have questions about Macerata Opera Festival? Ask them here!

Address in Macerata:

Piazza Mazzini.

Ph. (+39) 073 323 0735.

Rent a holiday home in Marche and travel like a local.