10 Must-Do Experiences When in Rome
Who doesn’t dream of spending a romantic weekend in Rome, or exploring on their own steam, taking in the ancient history which whispers from every corner?
This is a city which is on an overwhelming number of bucket lists the world over, but in order to see everything, you need at least a week. You need to take your time, soak up the atmosphere and enjoy every drip of Italian culture coming your way. If you rush, you’ll miss the good stuff!
Of course, this is also a city which is so packed with historic and cultural icons that it’s hard to narrow it down. To help you, let’s check out 10 must do experiences in Rome.
The Trevi Fountain
Famed the world over, the Trevi Fountain is a number one must do in Rome. Dating back to the 1700s, the Trevi Fountain has a Baroque design which is so jaw-dropping it will blow your mind, with the god Oceanus (god of the sea) decorating the fountain with his tritons. Throw in a coin and make a wish, as it is said that if you do so, your wish will be granted, and you will return to Rome again one day. Who wouldn’t want that?
The downside? It’s hugely popular and therefore you’re going to need to queue!
Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps)
Photo by Ronald Tagra
Located close to the Spanish Embassy, the Spanish Steps date back to the 19th century and are a series of steps which are beautiful in their design, because they are surrounded by nature and flowers. You can walk up the steps and enjoy the views, as well as enjoying a coffee or an ice cream at one of the many cafes. The steps gave historic writers Byron and Balzac inspiration for their writing.
If you’re interested in Roman history then this former temple is a must visit. Now a church, the Pantheon is literally beautiful, and it dates back as far as 120 AD. This is also the burial place of Victor Emmanuel II and Umberto I, who were both former Italian Kings.
Most people visit to stand in awe at the perfect proportions of the architecture, and again, it’s worth heading there early because queues can be literally huge. Early morning should see less of a queue, so make this is your first stop on one day of your visit.
St. Peter's Basilica
One of the iconic buildings of Rome’s skyline, St Peter’s Basilica can be found in Vatican City and the good news is that it’s free! Be sure to trek to the top of the dome for stunning views but do bear in mind that it does close on Wednesday mornings.
As the center of the Roman Catholic religion, this is an iconic spot, but also a spot that you can visit no matter what your religion. The sheer wonder of the architecture and intricacy of design is something to enjoy. If you want to climb to the top, you will need to pay a small fee, but it’s worth it.
Photo by Martin Pettitt
You don’t have to be a huge history buff to enjoy the British Museum. This is one of the largest and best museums in the city and is home to a huge array of historical items which were taken from around the world during the height of the British Empire.
You can check out the Rosetta Stone, ancient Egyptian mummies, and all manner of other items which will really highlight the might of the Empire in its heyday. This is a great idea for families also, and an ideal way to hide from a shower during a rainy day
Sistine Chapel & Vatican Museums
We’ve already mentioned the Trevi Fountain in Vatican City, but the many Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel are must visits too. Again, expect huge crowds.
The Sistine Chapel houses some of the famous Michelangelo’s most treasured works, but you should certainly try and stretch your day to a tour of the various museums which encompass the chapel. This is going to take up a bulk of your time, but it is oh-so worth it! The Raphael Rooms are a particular highlight, and one not to be missed.
Another spot for gladiator battles, if you can’t summon up the energy to stand in the queues for the Colosseum, or you are so enamored by its history that you want to see more, the nearby Roman Forum is a great spot to head to. Here you’ll be able to check out various other forms of Ancient Roman architecture too, with monuments and shrines. It isn’t in the best condition, but the Arch of Septimius Severus and The Temple of Saturn are particular highlights.
Enjoy Authentic Italian Food
Where else in the world can you try authentic food as delicious as this? Nowhere! Whether you opt for seafood, pizza, lasagna, or pasta, it is one of the most mouth-watering gastronomical experiences you will ever be privy to in your life. Of course, huge tourist restaurants are likely to have inflated prices, but is it worth it? Of course!
Santa Maria Della Vittoria
Photo by: Nick Kenrick
Another free attraction, Santa Maria Della Vittoria is a great spot for architecture fans, as well as anyone who enjoyed Dan Brown’s books. The chapel featured in Angels & Demons. The architecture is stunning in baroque style, and you should definitely check out the Ecstasy of St Teresa statue, within the Cornaro Chapel too.
Basilica di San Clemente
Photo by: Nicholas Frisadi
This is another one for fans of architecture and design, as this spot dates back to the second century. The Basilica di San Clemente is actually the ruins of several temples and churches on top of each other. You’ll see a pagan temple from the 2nd century, a church dating back to the 12th century, leading down to a 4th century church, and also a shrine to the god Mithras.
This is a true history lesson and again, the architecture is really interesting to see with your own eyes.
Where will you go first?