Rome, Italy

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If you don’t want to plan then that’s cool too, have a look at our ready made itineraries where you can pick and choose what you want to do.

So, let us begin.

Why Rome?

Rome’s history is anything but bland, in fact, it’s history defines the city today on almost every corner.

Being one of the world’s most powerful ancient empires, it has attracted people to it’s streets for millennia. To admire its breath-taking buildings and monuments, incredible works of art, small-town charm, leisurely pace of life and world-renowned cuisine.

It’s definitely a place that even seasoned travellers must visit at least once in their lifetime, although it would take a lifetime to see all that Rome has to offer.

The architecture of this city will leave you in awe. Ancient columns and ruins woven into the fabric of the city streets against the backdrop of modern buildings makes you think more about the historical aspect of what was once the capital of the Roman Empire.

Some buildings such as The Pantheon defy belief. The dome, the largest unsupported of its kind in the world, still stands today 1,300 years later. 

The city’s beautiful 2,000 year old piazzas are filled to the brim with visual records of its diverse time periods and is a brilliant way to relax and people watch whilst sipping on a double espresso.

But it’s not all just Roman remains and Piazzas, check out our TotalGuide of Things to do in Rome 2021

Rome also plays a big part in the lives of Roman Catholics too, with Vatican City, the world’s smallest state and home of the papacy since the 14th century, attracting pilgrims, tourists and art lovers in their millions each year.

The work of Michelangelo on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel is worth the entry to the Vatican Museum if for nothing else.

A visit to Rome brings you up close with monuments and constructions that influenced building practices and trends over centuries and across continents, including the Colosseum, the world’s largest amphitheatre.

The Italians are good at what they call Dolce Vita, and we as tourists embrace it by strolling through its ancient streets and basking in the city’s sunshine, whilst stopping for a gelato break on the Spanish steps or Trevi Fountain.

But Rome, like Italy in general, observes a slower pace to life. It’s quintessentially Italian to not rush about, with leisure being more valued than productivity.

Our What’s On Rome 2021 guide is packed full of the best events all year around

And then of course there is the food. Italian cuisines is beloved throughout the world with each region concocting it’s own twist on traditional dishes. To taste Rome’s famous “cucina povera” dishes, you have to eat in a traditional trattoria.

Rome is famous for its pastas including Amatriciana, Carbonara, Gricia and Cacio e Pepe and was revolutionary by inciting pizza by-the-slice or Pizza al taglio.

There is also a heavy Jewish influence in the cuisine, so you’ll find lots of artichokes, zucchini flowers and anchovies incorporated into the dishes.

For foodies looking for the finest eateries, Rome boasts 19 Michelin starred restaurants with La Pergola taking top spot not just for its 3 stars but also its unparalleled view across Rome. 

It is routinely voted the best in Rome, one of the best in Italy, and one of the best in the world.

But whatever you do, do not forget the ice cream.

From Pizza al taglio to La Pergola, don’t eat out in Rome until you’ve read our Rome Food Guide 2021

Getting to Rome

Air

Rome is home to not one but two airports. Ciampino (CIA) is closer to the city centre (17km) and will take around 20-25 minutes by bus, car or taxi. Fiumicino (FCO) also known as Leonardo da Vinci Airport is located 32km from Rome city centre and will take around 40 minutes by bus car or taxi.

Although getting taxis from the airport is expensive for solo travellers or couples, it may actually be cheaper if there are more travellers in your group. It is essential to book your transfer before you travel as ques at the airport and increased prices are common.

The cheapest options for both airports is to take the airport shuttle. A return shuttle to Rome from Fiumicino costs €9,00 per person and a return shuttle to Rome from Ciampino costs 8,00 per person.

Another option for travellers flying into Fiumicino is to book the non-stop Leonardo Express which takes around 32 minutes and costs €14 one way.

Landing in the middle of the night? Book your taxi in advance to avoid high charges on arrival

Train

Visitors arriving via train will arrive at Rome Termini Railway Station. Everyday over 800 trains arrive and depart from this station, with over 480,000 passengers daily, making it the largest train station in Italy. You can connect to Rome’s metro network from here as well as connecting via the local bus services too.

Many large European cities including London, Paris & Milan all have direct trains to Rome Termini as well as most domestic cities within Italy.

Sea

You can arrive in Rome by ferry from Barcelona, Olbia and Cagliari.

For information on getting around Rome, please check out our Getting Around Rome section

Most Popular Attractions

Rome is a multifaceted metropolis steeped in a rich history of culture. Located on the central western side of the Italian peninsula, the city was founded on the shores of the river Tiber and has an independent country, the Vatican City, within it’s borders. The city occupies a central position in Western history, as is populated with nearly as many historical and cultural attractions as it has people.

1. Pantheon

One of the most culturally significant and most well preserved buildings in Rome, the Pantheon houses the remains of several illustrious figures, including Raphael.

The origins of the Pantheon are contested, with some claiming that it was a temple dedicated to the pagan gods of Rome while others say it was the sacra privata of the original builder, Agrippa. In any case, the Pantheon is currently in use as a church, and you can even participate in Mass, held there every Sunday.

2. Colosseum

Colosseum or Coliseum is an oval amphitheatre located in the centre of the city of Rome. Often known as the Flavian Amphitheater, the Colosseum is strategically built near the Roman Forum, making it one of the most remarkably popular attractions in the country, with over 6 million people visiting it each year.

Needless to say that if you’re in Rome, you’re definitely going to see the Colosseum.

3. Roman Forum

The Roman Forum, or what they call it in Latin Forum Romanum, is an area of ruins that once used to be a shopping plaza with several important government buildings, surrounding it. This was the place where all forms of public meetings, concerts, performances, law courts and public trials in the city of Rome were held.

Elections, rallies, matches and other public events made this forum to be known as the most celebrated place in all of history. The offices that surrounded the forum gave it a touch of eliteness, at the same time a bustling place for recreation of all types. Hence it served as a major social, political and religious centre in the Roman empire.

Where to Stay

There are over 700 hotels in Rome so finding somewhere to rest your weary legs after a day exploring this majestic city won’t be hard.

Whether you’re wanting a cheap room in a hostel or bathe in a roof top bath in the essence of luxury, then we have you covered.

Budget

Located in Monti district, one of the most stimulating areas in Rome, and just 4 stops from the Spanish Steps, the New Generation Hostel Rome Center is 100 meters from Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica. It offers modern rooms with free WiFi.

The hostel offers both private rooms from £40.00 per night and shared dormitories with bunk beds from £18.00 per night.

Each unit includes lockers, a fridge, and a private or shared bathroom.

Economy

Attractively set in the Via Veneto district of Rome, The Radical Hotel Roma is situated 550 yards from Piazza Barberini and less than a mile from the Spanish Steps. With a bar, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The accommodation features a 24-hour front desk and room service.

The rooms in the hotel are fitted with a kettle. At The Radical Hotel Roma rooms are fitted with a desk and a flat-screen TV.

The accommodation offers a continental or à la carte breakfast.

PRICE

Premium

Dharma Boutique Hotel & SPA is located in Monti, one of Rome’s most popular districts. Cavour Metro Station is nearby, and Termini Train Station and the Coliseum are about 10 minutes’ walk away. The rooms offer air conditioning and free Wi-Fi.

All rooms come with private bathroom, a flat-screen TV, and wooden furniture. Guests enjoy a continental breakfast daily.

Dharma Boutique Hotel & SPA is a 19th-century building with an elegant breakfast room, and a bar open 24-hour. You can enjoy views over the rooftops of Rome from the beautiful terrace, where breakfast is served during summer.

PRICE

First

Sitting at the top of the Spanish Steps, Hotel de la Ville occupies one of the most enviable addresses in Rome. The boutique-lined Via dei Condotti shopping district is just steps away, and blockbuster sights like the Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, and Villa Borghese are all within walking distance. From its perch above Piazza di Spagna, the hotel’s rooftop bar and terraces afford postcard-perfect views over the domes and cupolas of the Eternal City.

The extravagant yet contemporary Grand Tour theme informs the décor of the hotel’s 100-plus rooms and suites, located over seven storeys and facing either Via Sistina or the hotel’s internal courtyard.

Sleek contemporary and bespoke furniture and refined fabrics and rugs play foil to chinoiserie and neoclassical elements, a nod to 17th-century trends.

Beds are king or super king-sized and sport elegant paisley Indian throws; televisions are smart (and, refreshingly, actually sync without a hitch); and bathrooms are indulgent marble oases stocked with Irene Forte Skincare products made with organic Sicilian botanicals from the Rocco Forte Hotel’s Verdura resort.

Double rooms from €430 ($524) in low season; and from €860 ($1,048) in high season. Breakfast included. Free Wi-Fi.

When to go?

The best time to visit Rome is from Mid-March to June and also from Late-October to November. These are the times when the weather is mild, and there aren’t many tourists roaming around the city.

Both times offer visitors choices to tour different parts of the city like the museums and monuments which are crowded during the peak season. If someone feels like seeing Rome in total peace, then they have to visit the city during its winter months which last between November to March.

June – August are considered the hottest time to visit the city of Rome. It also falls under the high season, when a large number of tourists flock from different countries. Everything is a little overpriced, but it is worth it if you like the nearly festive atmosphere.

September to October and April to June is the bridge between the high and low seasons. You’ll get fewer tourists during this time, with nearly empty streets, low prices but a lot less of the facilities that cater to tourists.

Most seasoned travellers go during this time, though it is not recommended for first-timers. Winter in Rome is the offseason, and it is when you’ll see the least tourists.

For more information on yearly weather charts and daily weather updates in Rome, click here