Welcome Trekkers to the eternal city of Rome, Italy - a city that has been enchanting visitors and locals alike for over 2500 years. Known as the birthplace of Renaissance art and architecture, Rome offers stunning views, delicious food, and a rich history that is palpable wherever you go. Whether you’re a history buff, an art enthusiast or just someone seeking the ultimate European vacation, Rome has something to offer everyone. From its towering Colosseum to the stunning Trevi Fountain, Rome is a city that will leave you breathless and filled with wonder.
As you stroll through the streets of this ancient city, you’ll find yourself lost in the beauty of the city’s architecture. Marvel at the incredible frescoes and mosaics that adorn many of Rome’s most famous landmarks including the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, and the Vatican Museums. Explore the ruins of the Roman Forum and imagine what life must have been like in ancient Rome as you stand in the shadow of the Colosseum.
But Rome is not just a city of the past. It is a living city with a vibrant culture that embraces both the traditional and the modern. As you wander through the charming cobblestone streets, you’ll encounter delicious trattorias and enchanting wine bars that offer the best of Italian cuisine. And when the sun sets, the city comes alive with music, laughter, and an energy that is infectious.
Whether you have a week or a month to explore the city, Rome will always leave you longing for more. So pack your bags, grab your passport, and embark on a journey that will transport you through time and leave you with memories that will last a lifetime.
Here are 10 things to do while you’re in Rome, Italy
1. Roam the Colosseum
The Colosseum of Rome is one of the most iconic landmarks in the world. Located in the heart of the Italian capital, this ancient amphitheater is a must-see destination for anyone visiting the Eternal City. The Colosseum is an architectural marvel that dates back to 80 AD, and its imposing structure still stands tall, with its imposing walls and impressive arches telling the story of Rome’s ancient history.
The Colosseum was originally built to host gladiatorial fights and other public spectacles. For centuries, the Colosseum was the center of Roman entertainment, attracting tens of thousands of spectators eager to witness deadly duels between trained warriors, gladiator-versus-wild animal battles, and even naval battles on the amphitheater’s flooded arena.
Today, visiting the Colosseum is a chance to step back in time and explore the impressive feats of engineering and architecture that allowed the amphitheater to function all those centuries ago. The Colosseum offers an unforgettable experience for visitors with intricately carved marble columns and arches, providing breathtaking views from every angle.
As you walk through the massive archways and under the towering walls, you will feel the echoes of ancient times and the pulsing energy of the crowds who came to watch history unfold. You will get lost in the stories of the brave warriors who fought to the death, the roar of the crowds, and the excitement that must have filled the air during each spectacle.
Visiting the Colosseum is an unforgettable journey into the heart of ancient Rome. Whether you’re a history buff, an architecture enthusiast, or just someone looking to experience the magic of one of the world’s most majestic historical monuments, the Colosseum of Rome is an attraction that you cannot afford to miss!
The Colosseum is a perfect attraction to visit while in Rome. The magnificent ruins of the amphitheater provide an excellent insight into the glory days of ancient Rome. The history of the Colosseum as the site of deadly gladiatorial battles adds to its allure, making it a must-visit attraction for tourists. The atmosphere in the amphitheater is truly remarkable, with visitors being transported back to ancient Rome. Overall, I would rate visiting the Colosseum with a 9 due to its historical significance, impressive ruins and the unique experience it offers.
2. Toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain
Trevi Fountain, located in Rome, is one of the most famous fountains in the world. Legend has it that if you toss a coin into the fountain over your shoulder, you will ensure a return trip to the Eternal City. The tradition is so well-known that millions of people visit the fountain every year to toss coins into the water.
The Trevi Fountain is a stunning work of art that boasts intricate details and grand scale. The fountain is over 26 meters (85 feet) tall and 49 meters (161 feet) wide, creating a dramatic and captivating sight for visitors. The fountain was designed by Italian architect Nicola Salvi and completed by Giuseppe Pannini in 1762. The famous fountain has been the backdrop to many movies over the years, including the classic film “La Dolce Vita.”
Beyond the lore and grandeur of the fountain, the surrounding area is also worth exploring. Take a stroll through the narrow streets of Rome’s historic center, and you’ll discover traditional pizzerias, boutique shops, and stunning architecture. You could even stop by the Pantheon and see one of the most magnificent buildings in Rome, with its impressive dome and centuries of history.
Trevi Fountain is an absolute must-see destination in Rome, not only to toss a coin and make a wish but to soak in the beauty and history of this iconic monument. From the bustling atmosphere to stunning architecture, Rome is a city that will continue to captivate visitors, and the Trevi Fountain is an essential part of that experience.
3. Indulge in Italian Gelato
Are you a fan of sweets? Do you have a craving for something deliciously creamy and indulgent? Then you have to try Italian gelato! And there’s no better place to do it than in Rome, where you’ll find some of the most renowned gelaterias in the world.
Gelato is an Italian-style ice cream that is made with less butterfat than traditional ice cream, resulting in a thicker, creamier texture. It’s also served at a slightly warmer temperature, which allows for the flavors to really pop on your taste buds. And, boy, do the flavors of Italian gelato really pop!
In Rome, there are an endless array of gelaterias to choose from, each with their own unique flavors and styles. Some of the most famous include Giolitti, which has been in business since 1900 and offers more than 50 flavors, including traditional Italian favorites like pistachio and stracciatella (vanilla with chocolate shavings); San Crispino, which uses all-natural ingredients and offers more unusual flavors like honey, ginger, and even champagne sorbet; and Gelateria del Teatro, which has some of the most decadent and richest gelato you’ll ever taste. And that’s just scratching the surface!
It offers a unique opportunity to experience one of Italy’s most famous treats at the place where it originated. It’s an excellent way to taste different flavors and learn about the history of gelato. Moreover, Rome has a wide variety of Gelato shops and trying out the different shops will provide an excellent chance to see the city. So if you’re visiting Rome, be sure to indulge in some Italian gelato. Whether you go for a classic flavor or one of the more adventurous choices, your sweet tooth will surely be satisfied.
4. Admire the Vatican Museums
The Vatican Museums are a must-see for any art aficionado, history buff or anyone looking for an unforgettable cultural experience. The Museums offer a treasure trove of art, sculptures, and historical artifacts that span centuries and continents, and provide visitors with an unparalleled glimpse into the rich history and culture of the Catholic Church.
Located within Vatican City, the Museums house one of the world’s most extensive collections of art, including masterpieces by Michelangelo, Raphael, and Leonardo da Vinci, to name a few. Upon arrival, visitors are greeted by the stunning spiral staircase that leads to the heart of the Museums, where they can marvel at countless art pieces and sculptures from around the world, including ancient Greek and Roman statues.
One of the highlights of the Vatican Museums is undoubtedly the Sistine Chapel, which is widely regarded as one of the greatest works of art in human history. The Chapel’s ceiling, painted by Michelangelo between 1508 and 1512, features some of the most iconic frescoes in the world, including The Creation of Adam and The Last Judgment.
In addition to the dazzling art collections, the Vatican Museums offer several other attractions that make this a unique and unforgettable experience. Visitors can explore the Egyptian and Etruscan collections, see the stunning gardens of the Vatican, and even witness some of the rarest manuscripts and maps in existence.
The Vatican Museums provide a fascinating journey through time and art and offer visitors a glimpse into the rich history of Vatican City and the Catholic Church. The museum offers visitors a chance to admire the beauty of the artworks, get lost in the rich history and learn something new about the world in general. Given the magnitude of the collection, a trip to the Vatican Museums can be enjoyable for all types of travelers, including families, history buffs, and art enthusiasts. For anyone seeking a truly unforgettable cultural experience, the Vatican Museums are an absolute must-visit destination.
5. Wander through the Pantheon
The Pantheon in Rome is one of the most iconic and stunning ancient buildings in the world. Built almost 2,000 years ago, this spherical temple has stood the test of time and remains just as majestic and awe-inspiring as the day it was built.
As you wander through the Pantheon, it’s hard not to be struck by the immense size and scale of the structure. The domed ceiling, which is the largest unsupported dome in the world, looms high overhead, giving the space a grand and reverent feeling. The intricate architecture and details of the building are truly remarkable, with marble floors, towering columns, and intricate carvings covering almost every surface.
As you explore the Pantheon, you’ll learn about the building’s rich history and get a glimpse into the ancient world of Rome. This temple was originally built as a place of worship for the gods, and over the centuries it has served many different purposes, from a church to a tomb for famous artists and figures. Today, the Pantheon is still used as a place of worship, and visitors can attend mass in the stunning space.
But the Pantheon isn’t just a temple or a church - it’s a testament to the brilliance of ancient engineering and design. The way the light filters through the oculus in the ceiling, creating a beam of light that moves throughout the room, is a true marvel of engineering. It’s a reminder that even in ancient times, people were capable of creating incredible structures that stand the test of time.
The Pantheon is a beautiful and historic building that is definitely worth experiencing. The architecture is unique and impressive, with its large dome and marble columns. Walking through the temple gives visitors a glimpse into the past and a sense of the grandeur of ancient Rome. However, some visitors may find the attraction crowded and the experience could be improved if visitors had more time and space to fully explore the temple. Overall, I think this activity would be a great addition to any Rome itinerary.
6. Climb to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica
If you’re looking for an unforgettable experience while visiting Rome, climbing to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica is a must-do. The hike up 551 steps might sound daunting, but the stunning views of the city from the Vatican’s dome make it all worth it. The ascent can be challenging, but you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views of the Eternal City from a unique perspective that few get to see.
As you make your way to the top of the dome, you’ll pass by intricate mosaics and stunning frescoes that adorn the walls of the basilica. The climb can take anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes, depending on how fast you go and how crowded it is, but once you reach the top, you’ll be rewarded with 360-degree views of Rome that will take your breath away.
From the dome, you’ll be able to see iconic landmarks, such as the Colosseum and the Roman Forum, as well as lesser-known gems, like the neighborhood of Trastevere with its winding streets and charming cafés. On a clear day, you can even see as far as the Mediterranean Sea.
The climb to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica is a unique and unforgettable experience that will make your trip to Rome even more special. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just looking for a new perspective on the city, this climb is a must-do for anyone visiting the Eternal City.
7. Explore the Catacombs
Walking through the dark and winding tunnels of the Catacombs is like taking a trip back in time, hundreds of years before the glory of the Roman Empire. The eerie silence, broken only by the occasional drip of water, makes it easy to imagine the early Christians huddled together in these cramped and musty spaces, seeking shelter from persecution.
As you explore the Catacombs, you will see thousands of graves carved into the walls, many adorned with Christian symbols and images. The air is heavy with a sense of solemnity, and visitors cannot help but feel a profound sense of reverence and respect for the people who once lived and died here.
But the Catacombs also offer a glimpse into the cultural and artistic heritage of Rome. The intricate carvings and paintings on the graves are a testament to the skill and beauty of the artisans of ancient Rome, while the art and architecture of the surrounding city provide a striking contrast to the stark simplicity of the tunnels.
The catacombs are an interesting attraction for those who are interested in history, archaeology, and architecture. The tour offers visitors a chance to learn about the burial practices and customs of the early Christians in Rome. The experience of walking through the narrow passages and seeing the tombs up close can be both eerie and fascinating. A visit to the Catacombs is an unforgettable experience that will transport you back in time and leave you with a deep appreciation for the life and history of early Christian communities in Rome.
8. Put your hand in the Bocca della Verità
If you find yourself in Rome, one experience you must not miss is putting your hand in the Bocca della Verità, also known as the Mouth of Truth. This sculpture can be found in the Santa Maria in Cosmedin church, which dates back to the 6th century.
Legend has it that the Mouth of Truth was used in ancient times to test the truthfulness of those accused of a crime. Anyone who placed their hand in the sculpture’s mouth and told a lie would have their hand bitten off. While this is certainly just a myth, it adds to the allure of the experience.
Visitors to the church can now test their own truthfulness by placing their hand in the Mouth of Truth. The sculpture itself is imposing, depicting a man’s face with a gaping mouth. The marble is weathered by time, and one can’t help but wonder about the countless people who have tested themselves over the centuries.
Putting your hand in the Mouth of Truth may seem like a trivial activity, but it’s an experience that is both thrilling and humbling. It’s a reminder of the long history of Rome, and the fact that despite the passage of time, some things remain the same. Visiting the Santa Maria in Cosmedin church to see the Mouth of Truth is an opportunity to participate in a storied tradition and to experience a small piece of Roman history firsthand.
9. Visit the Spanish Steps
The Spanish Steps in Rome, Italy is not just a sightseeing destination; it’s an experience that immerses you into the timeless culture and romantic ambiance of Italy. Your journey begins the moment you set foot on the majestic staircase that spirals upwards, revealing breathtaking views of the city and the sprawling Piazza di Spagna. It’s said that the Spanish Steps were constructed in the 1700s primarily to connect the Spanish Embassy with the Trinità dei Monti Church. However, today, it serves as a popular spot where locals and tourists alike come together to savor the beauty and magic of Rome.
Climbing the Spanish Steps is an absolute must-do when visiting Rome; the scene from the top is unparalleled, and it’s quite an accomplishment to climb all the steps to the summit. As you climb the 135-staircase, the stunning view of Rome unfolds before your eyes. It’s a perfect spot to take some memorable photos, watch the sunset over the city, or to sit back and enjoy a gelato while taking in the surrounding beauty.
At the base of the staircase, Piazza di Spagna or the “Square of Spain,” is a bustling shopping and eating square filled with chic cafes, luxury boutiques, and retail shops offering the best in Italian fashion. The plaza exudes a distinct character with the mélange of people, music, and street-art performers.
The Spanish Steps, one of the most elegant places in Rome, offers visitors an invitation to step back in time and experience the charm and romance of the Eternal City. So whether you’re searching for a relaxing spot to soak in the beauty of Rome, or you’re looking for a quick workout climbing the steps, make sure to include a visit to the Spanish Steps on your travel itinerary.
10. Walk the Appian Way
The Appian Way, or Via Appia Antica, was one of the most important roads in ancient Rome, a path that led all the way south to the heel of the Italian boot. Today, this historic road still stands as a testament to Roman engineering and architecture, lined with beautiful ruins that tell the stories of an ancient civilization.
As you walk down the tranquil path of the Appian Way, you’ll find yourself surrounded by beautiful green countryside, while the occasional traces of ancient villa or temple will pop from the lush greenery. You’ll feel the gentle breeze on your face, a welcome respite from the heat and noise of modern-day Rome.
Along the way, you’ll see the ruins of tombs, temples, and churches that are simply otherworldly. From the cobbled road itself that’s older than the history itself, to the aqueducts that still stand proud, you’ll feel like you’ve taken a plunge into a time completely different from our own.
This is the perfect opportunity to learn about the fascinating history and culture of Ancient Rome. Through your walk, you’ll come to appreciate the talent and dedication of the Romans, their architecture, art, and way of life that inspired generations of people throughout history.
So, come along and take a stroll on the Appian Way, immerse yourself in the calmness of the Italian countryside, and discover the magnificence of ancient Rome.
Rome is a city that never fails to impress its visitors. From historical landmarks, breathtaking fountains, culinary delights, and awe-inspiring art, the Eternal City is a must-visit destination for any travel enthusiast. The city’s charm and beauty are evident in every corner, and its rich history and cultural significance make it a top destination for tourists from all parts of the world.
Whether you’re exploring the ancient ruins of the Colosseum, tossing coins in the Trevi Fountain or strolling down the vibrant streets of Trastevere, Rome has something to offer for everyone. This iconic city’s mix of ancient and modern, traditional and trendy is simply incomparable.
So, pack your bags, book your tickets, and head to Rome - and get ready to fall in love with the city’s magic!