12 Best Things to Do in Rome

Welcome to the “eternal city” of Rome, in the beautiful country of Italy. This miraculous old city will sweep you up and take you back to ancient times with its rich history and art. As you walk through the romantic streets of Rome, you will stumble across shambles of preserved ruins from 700 BC. Rome has an incredible and unique charm that cannot be found in any other city; it is one of the most visited cities in all of Europe, and for a good reason!

Rome is filled with life, history, art, incredible food, and excellent nightlife. There is no shortage of things to do in this beautiful city. For all types of people, whether you are an art and history lover, a foodie, or a sightseer, Rome will be sure not to disappoint. Rome cannot be seen in just a day or two; instead, a week is a more reasonable amount of time to take in the culture and immerse yourself in the Roman way of life. Below is a list of the best things to do in Rome:

Discover the Lively Neighborhood of Trastevere

Trastevere is a colorful and lively neighborhood in Rome located south of the Vatican. Trastevere is tucked along the Tiber River. It is like no other district in Rome, with a young atmosphere, restaurants on every corner, bars, and delicious gelato shops. Live music is usually played on the streets, creating a fun atmosphere at night.

The vibe of Trastevere is very young, as it is filled with a significant majority of Rome’s nightlife and close to most of Rome’s large universities. Students adore Trastevere, and so do visitors. If you are in Rome, you must grab a wine and pizza before bar hopping later into the night.  

Image: Tiber River

Enjoy a meal in Piazza Navona

If you are unfamiliar with a “piazza,” it translates to “square” in English. These squares are sprawled throughout Rome and other parts of Italy. They are open quart yards with a structure in the middle which signifies that unique square.

Rome has many impressive Piazzas; however, Piazza Navona is a favorite among many. The piazza is vibrant with its salmon-colored buildings surrounding it and stone floors. A fountain, Fontana del Moro, and a beautiful stone statue towering into the sky are in the middle of Piazza Navona. In addition, there are many tasty restaurants to choose from where you can sit on the terrace and take in the views as you enjoy an authentic Italian dish.

Embark On a Sketching Tour

Rome is sprawled with natural art right and left. You will find beauty on every street corner, full of vibrant colors, hand-carved stone, and old statues. Artists worldwide have been painting and drawing Rome for centuries, and you can too! Not only will you be able to sketch some of the most iconic landmarks in the world, but you will be able to explore different perspectives of the city.

Sketching Rome will allow you to view the city in a new light from angles you may not have noticed otherwise. The sketching tours are perfect for people who love activities and may not be the type of person who usually likes to go on a typical walking tour but still wants to get an insight into the city. There are many drawing tours available in Rome, which you can easily find and book online or at a tourism shop.

Explore the Roman Forum

The Roman Forum is one of the best spots to discover the ancient ruins of Rome. The Roman Forum is a large square filled with stone pillars and remains of old ruins, history, and descriptions to read from. It is the perfect place to get to know ancient Rome’s history and culture, and the forum’s beauty is unforgettable. It is situated between the Palatine and Capitoline hills, two of Rome’s famous seven hills. The Palatine hill is also a must-see while visiting the rest of the Roman Forum. Palatine Hill holds some remarkable remains of ruins and pillars and offers a great view of Rome.

Hike Up Gianicolo Hill

If you want to enjoy an incredible view of the eternal city, Gianicolo Hill is the perfect spot. It is a small hike, not too intense, and hands down very worth it! Once you reach the top of Gianicolo Hill, you are met with a spectacular panoramic view of all of Rome. It is the perfect place to find peace and unwind. If you bring along the best travel guitar, a nice book, or a journal, you could spend hours on Gianicolo Hill.

The view here includes Rome’s highlights, the Colosseum, Roman Forum, grand statues, and famous piazzas. The square at the top of Gianicolo has a quaint little bar and restaurant to freshen up with a nice glass of wine and an authentic dish. The hill also offers specific nights an open jazz club opens up after dark.

Take a Tour of the Colosseum

You cannot visit Rome without at least walking by the Colosseum. Arguably the most iconic staple of Rome, the Colosseum is a large amphitheater with an immense history. Pictures do not do the Colosseum justice; it is much larger and more spectacular in person. Even just walking outside the Colosseum is impressive; nonetheless, to get the whole experience, there are so many different tours you can sign up for to walk around the inside and truly learn the history.

Stroll Around the Morning Market at Campo De’ Fiori

Campo De’ Fiori is a beautiful little square off the Tiber River. It is well known for its long-lived morning markets that take place every morning from Monday through Friday. Locals love to come to the market to buy sweet-smelling flowers, spices, fresh fruit and vegetables, meats, and even home appliances. Many different stalls open up; it is the perfect place to support the locals. Many people also flock to Campo De’ Fiori for nightlife as there are many other restaurants and a great bar scene.

Visit Vatican City

Many people do not know that Vatican City is a country of its own, separate from Italy. The Vatican City holds the largest church in the world, Saint Peter’s Basilica. Saint Peter’s Basilica is a Roman Catholic Church and a must-see when in Rome. The church is renaissance style, full of gold lining and stained glass, letting light shine through onto the finely detailed paintings that reach up from the floor to the rooftop. The church is truly majestic.

Throw a Coin Into the Trevi Fountain

There has long been a myth in Rome that if you throw a coin into the Trevi Fountain, you will receive good fortune. Whether the legend is true or not, you must follow the tradition and throw a coin yourself while in Rome. It is a must.

The Trevi Fountain is a beautiful famous statue and fountain in the center of the lively Trebi district of Rome. There are many great restaurants and hotels you can find through the best hotel booking sites, and stay in close proximity to the fountain. The sculpture above the fountain is of the nautical god Neptune, his two winged horses, and his triton. The Trevi fountain has been in many films and paintings by famous artists. It is truly an iconic destination and something you cannot skip doing when visiting Rome.

Walk Up the Spanish Steps

Located in the marvelous Piazza di Spagna, the Spanish Steps of Rome hold immense significance and history. The steps have been featured in numerous films and cherished for years and years. They are the longest and widest stairs in Europe, and people come from around the world to snap pictures and admire the atmosphere. At the top of the stairs, you will find a spectacular view of the eternal city.

Admire the Art in the Sistine Chapel

Located in Vatican City lies the beautiful Sistine Chapel, named after Pope Sixtus IV. The entire inside of the chapel is full of renaissance-style paintings done by some of the most incredible artists in the world. Michelangelo painted the renowned “Creation of Adam” and “Creation of Eve”; his paintings are reason enough to take a trip to this great chapel. The enormous scale of the chapel is hard to comprehend, Michelangelo painted over five thousand square feet of paintings, and it took him five years to complete.

Enjoy Delicious Italian Food on a Roman Terrace

A big part of Italian culture is taking the time to enjoy a delicious meal. Italians love to spend time at each meal to enjoy every bite. Another important tradition is eating on a terrace, whether a patio in a piazza or a rooftop terrace; Rome does not fall short of opportunities to eat outdoors, to be able to take in the beautiful atmosphere of Rome. Enjoying a lovely pizza or pasta on a Roman terrace is an experience you will not forget.

Rome will sweep you up into ancient times and take you on a cultural journey of art, history, food and love. The city is waiting for those who are curious for adventure and a new perspective on life that the incredible eternal city gives off onto its visitors.

Author Bio: Ashley Pokorski

Ashley is a solo traveler, social media influencer, freelance writer, video creator, and regular contributor at Fidis Travel. Born and raised in Maui Hawaii, now she’s going wherever her heart desires.

Author: Vinz

Vinz is a part-time travel blogger, part-time digital marketing specialist, and full-time dreamer. He loves the photographic medium for expressing what he loves about life. He always finds himself lost during travel. But he loves unfamiliar territories and finding his way around. Aside from his taste for adventure, he loves two things while traveling - meeting new friends and food.

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