Rome is the capital of Italy and a sprawling metropolis. It’s home to some of the world’s most iconic ancient monuments, including the Colosseum, Pantheon, and Trevi Fountain. Rome is an unforgettable destination for travelers who want to experience Italy’s unique culture, history, cuisine, and amazing gelato! In this ultimate Rome travel guide, we’ll explore the best places to visit in Rome, tips for getting around the city, what to eat, where to stay, and much more.
How to Visit Rome
Rome is easily accessible by air, rail, and road. The city’s main airport is Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport (FCO), located about 24 km from the city center. From FCO, travelers can take the high-speed train to Termini Station or a taxi. If you’re traveling from within Italy, there are several options for getting to Rome. The easiest way is by train. Rome has two major railway stations: Termini and Tiburtina. There are also regular buses that connect Rome with other Italian cities like Florence, Naples, and Milan. Airports can be confusing, especially in foreign countries, so be sure to use this handy airport guide if you’re flying to the Italy capital.
How to Get Around Rome
Rome’s winding streets and cobblestone lanes make it best explored on foot. Rome weather is the best of any capital city in Europe, with temperatures rarely dropping below freezing during the winter months, mild days in spring and autumn, and hot summers. The city is full of charming squares, alleyways, and monuments that you’ll miss out on if you take public transportation. One of the best ways to get around the capital of Italy is with a walking tour. On all of our best Rome tours, you’ll be able to see all the major landmarks in a short amount of time while learning more about their history from an experienced guide.
If you’re not up for walking, there are plenty of other tour options available as well. Alternatively, travelers can use Rome’s efficient public transportation system which includes buses, trams, metros, and taxis. Metro tickets are available from the ticket machines located in each station and are valid for 75 minutes. The tram system is also a great way to get around, with its routes covering many of Rome’s main attractions. Taxis can be an expensive option but they’ll get you where you need to go quickly.
Neighborhoods of Rome
There are five unique Rome neighborhoods:
- Trastevere: This neighborhood is known for its cobblestone streets, Baroque churches, and lively nightlife. You can even take a food tour that stops here.
- Campo de’ Fiori: Located near the Pantheon, this area is home to a bustling outdoor market and some of the greatest restaurants in Rome.
- Jewish Ghetto: This historic district was once home to Rome’s Jewish population. Today it’s a vibrant area filled with cafes, galleries, and shops.
- Piazza Navona: This picturesque square is lined with Baroque fountains and is surrounded by art galleries and restaurants.
- Colosseum District: This area is home to the iconic Colosseum, as well as other ancient ruins.
While many of these neighborhoods are known for their ancient and Baroque architecture, Rome is home to many different styles. You can check out this design guide to see what piques your interest.
Food, Drink, and Nightlife
Rome is renowned for its delicious cuisine. You can find a variety of dishes, from seafood and pasta to pizza and gelato. The city’s signature dish is carbonara – a creamy sauce made with eggs, cheese, bacon, and black pepper. Use this restaurant guide to find the best choices for trying Rome food. If you’d rather cook yourself, there are plenty of markets, like the Campo de’ Fiori, for you to purchase ingredients. You can also see and do it all with a cooking and market tour.
Rome is also home to a vibrant café culture. Italians love their espresso and cappuccino, so be sure to try some while you’re in Rome. For those who prefer something stronger, bars throughout the city serve up classic Italian cocktails like Aperol Spritz and Negroni. Wine is a must-try in Rome. The area around the city is famous for its white and red wines such as Frascati, Est! Est!! Est!!! di Montefiascone, and Orvieto. You can take a Rome wine-tasting tour to try Frascati and tour a vineyard, or you can use this food and wine guide to take the planning into your own hands.
When the sun goes down in Rome, the city comes alive with nightlife. There are plenty of bars and clubs to explore in the Eternal City. Take a stroll through Trastevere for some of the liveliest spots, or use this bar guide to discover the best locations.
Rome is known for its upscale shopping, and visitors can find designer boutiques everywhere. Via dei Condotti is one of the most famous streets for luxury shopping, boasting stores like Gucci, Prada, Louis Vuitton, and Bulgari.
For a more authentic experience, head to Campo de’ Fiori or Trastevere for local artisanal products such as handmade leather goods and ceramics. The capital of Italy also has plenty of markets where you can find Italy souvenirs and unique gifts – Porta Portese market near Trastevere is one of the biggest flea markets in Europe!
Rome is a city that combines modern culture with ancient history. One of its most iconic landmarks is the Colosseum, an amphitheater built in 70 AD and used for gladiator battles and other public spectacles. Additional must-see attractions include St Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museum in Vatican City, the Pantheon (the best-preserved Roman temple), the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain (Rome’s most famous Baroque fountain), and Castel Sant’Angelo. You can get the most out of your time by taking a tour to see these locations.
No visit to Rome would be complete without exploring some of its many museums and galleries. The Capitoline Museums house a collection of ancient sculptures, while the Galleria Borghese is home to some of Rome’s most famous Renaissance artworks. For an outdoor experience, take a stroll through the Villa Borghese gardens or visit one of Rome’s many parks such as the Appian Way Park or Villa Doria Pamphili.
Rome offers a variety of accommodation options for travelers, from big international chains to hostels. Depending on your budget and preferences, you can choose from high-end five-star hotels in the city center or cozy bed & breakfasts in Rome’s beautiful neighborhoods. For more information on finding the perfect hotel in Rome, check out our guide to hotels near the capital of Italy and our list of recommended hotels.
What to See Near Rome
Rome is surrounded by some of Italy’s most popular attractions. Just a short drive or train ride away, travelers can easily travel from Rome to Pompeii. Explore the ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum, or take a day trip to Tivoli to admire its Renaissance-era villa gardens. In nearby Ostia Antica, visitors can explore the remains of an ancient Roman port city. For nature lovers, there are plenty of options near Rome including Lake Bracciano and Castel Gandolfo which offer lovely views and leisurely walks.
For those looking to explore farther afield, there are many different ways to travel from Rome to Florence, Venice, or Milan. The rolling hills of Tuscany are also within reach, with many wineries and charming towns for travelers to explore.
Roam Around Rome with Tourist Italy!
As proven by this ultimate travel guide, Rome is a captivating city, full of ancient monuments, Renaissance artworks, and delicious cuisine. Whether you’re in the capital of Italy to explore its rich history or simply to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere, Rome has something for everyone!
To make the most of your experience in this magnificent location, try a tour of Rome with us at Tourist Italy. From Colosseum tours to wine tastings, there’s no shortage of ways to experience this incredible city with Tourist Italy. Or, if you prefer to explore on your own, we offer many incredible guides to the city, like this where-to-stay guide or our itinerary for two days in Rome.