Are you a history buff who loves delving deeply into the past of Western Civilisation? If you are, Rome is the city for you – it’s got a healthy mix of historic ruins, works of art & architecture that span time, tasty and flavorful food, and vibrant city life that gives any visitor plenty to do.
Rome’s Rich History, Art, Architecture and Food
Like many ancient cities, Rome has an interesting origin story in the legend of Romulus and Remus that began on Palatine Hill in 753 BCE. Since then, the city has given the world everything from world-class art and architecture, an expansive food culture, and a wide range of cultural and regional traditions.
Since its foundation, the city has developed in breathtaking ways to include a dynamic cityscape, a breathtaking open-air museum, and iconic tourist locations such as the emphatic ruins, the Colosseum, the historic Roman Forum, The Sistine Chapel, a Vatican Necropolis tour, Villa Borghese Gardens, St. Peter’s Basilica (especially for Roman Catholic visitors) and the many fountains (such as Trevi) and masterpieces sprinkled throughout the city which have been designed by Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Raphael, and Bernini.
In addition to its art and architecture, most visitors to Rome cannot help but rave about its food culture, whether it’s at a local pizzeria or a neighborhood trattoria.
Visitors to Rome have plenty of delicious dishes to choose from, whether it’s pizza, fresh-baked bread and pasta, freshly brewed specialty coffees, and sumptuous liqueurs and wine straight from the hills of Castelli Romani.
Traveling in Rome
Considered the third most-visited city in the world with 20 million visitors a year, Rome is loved for its quaint charm, cobbled streets, immensely rich cultural heritage, and incredible offerings in terms of fashion offerings and modern nightlife.
If you’re looking for an extra special and unique experience, Rome has got plenty of those, whether it be enrolling in Gladiator school, taking an Italian cooking class where you can interact with the locals, recreate the film Roman Holiday by taking a night ride on a Vespa, or visiting the Roman catacombs.
Saving Money in Rome
While traveling in Rome, you will also notice that it is not the most affordable of travel locations – this is why it is imperative to find ways to travel to this beautiful city and save money while you do so. Some of the money-saving hacks to travel to Rome on a tight budget include:
Buy a Roma City Pass
This all-inclusive city pass is available for 48 hour or 72 hour periods, and each includes different perks. The 48 hour pass provides you with free entry to one attraction (out of a total of 50), and the 72 hour pass gives you the chance to have free entry to two different attractions.
In addition, each pass also includes unlimited metro, bus, and tram travel and a €2 discount on all other attractions. If you would prefer to purchase the OMNIA pass instead, it includes a Hop on Hop off Tour of Rome as well as entry to the Vatican Museums and St Peter’s Basilica.
Use Public Transport
Instead of touring the city using the taxi system, why not travel using Rome’s ATAC bus and metro service. At a flat rate cost, these tickets are valid for 100 minutes from the point at which they are stamped. You can also opt for a 24 hour pass (cost is €7 per day), a 48 hour pass (€12.50 a day), a three-day pass (total cost is €18), or a week’s pass (at €24).
Basking in an Italian Aperitivo
If you enjoy a mid-day treat, consider having a small drink before dinner – or, as Italians call it, an aperitivo. Thankfully, there are several places throughout Rome that offer light snacks with drinks from 7 PM to 9 PM. Among the top spots for an aperitivo in Rome is Freni e Frizione, Momart Café, and Rec23.
Enjoy the Free Sights of Rome
Across the city, there are many sites to visit and experiences to have that come at no cost to the visitor. These include: throwing a coin for good luck at Trevi Fountain, relaxing along the Spanish Steps, walking through the Pantheon (one of Rome’s most well-preserved monuments), enjoying the city’s many free concerts between June and September at Estate Romana, and even taking advantage of the many “free days” at Roman state-owned museums such as the Borghese Gallery and the Vatican Museums.
One of the places most beloved in Rome – and one that also has a free day – is the Colosseum. Also known as the Flavian Amphitheater, the Colosseum is made entirely of sand concrete and, at its height, could host up to 70,000 spectators. Each year, over 5 million people visit this site – and many typically decide to use luggage storage in Rome before visiting so as to avoid hauling their material all along the tough floor terrain.
Visit During Off-Season
Another way to avoid the tremendous costs of traveling to Rome is to travel during the off-peak season or off-season (these include April to mid-June, September through to October, or November through March). Not only will this guarantee cheaper airfare, but you might also luck out and find hotel discounts as well.