Ancient Rome is often regarded as one of the most fascinating tourist destinations in the world due to its rich history and culture. From ancient ruins and monuments to iconic Italian cuisine and amazing Italian art, there’s plenty to explore in Rome. If you’re planning a trip to Rome, here are some of the best places to visit to make the most of your time in this captivating city.
Colosseum: Rome’s original and iconic Roman amphitheatre, the Colosseum, is the oldest and most recognizable landmark in the city. Words alone can’t describe the grandeur of this iconic structure which was built in AD 80 to entertain Romans with gladiatorial and animal shows. Explore the levels that once hosted these events and take in the history of this ancient monument.
Roman Forum: No trip to Rome is complete without visiting the Roman Forum, the original heart of Rome. Founded in 753 BC, the Forum was the center of the city and featured grand temples, courthouses, and government buildings. Today it is still possible to explore the ruins of many of these edifices and imagine what Rome was like thousands of years ago.
Trevi Fountain: One of Rome’s most iconic fountains and arguably one of the most romantic places in the city, the Trevi Fountain is a must-see. According to legend, throwing a coin in the fountain guarantees a return to Rome, so why not make a wish while you’re there? Standing 18 meters high, the fountain is a beautiful work of art and a symbol of Italy.
St. Peter’s Basilica: Situated in the heart of Vatican City, St. Peter’s Basilica is one of the most revered churches in the world. Built in the 16th century and topped with a breath-taking dome, it is a major pilgrimage site for many Christians and is known for its baroque architecture and impressive artworks.
Vatican Museums: Home to thousands of works of art from some of the greatest artists in history, the Vatican Museums are a must-visit for art lovers. From ancient sculptures to Renaissance masterpieces and modern works, you can explore the history of art and gain an appreciation for the variety of styles.
Circo Massimo: Just outside the heart of Rome is the legendary Circo Massimo, an oval track that was once used for chariot races and public entertainment. Today, it is still possible to explore the stadium and soak in the atmosphere of its rich history. There are many spots along the sides of the track to take in sweeping views of the city and the surrounding countryside.
Catacombs Of St. Callixtus
If you want to gain an insight into the early life of Christians in Rome, check out the Catacombs Of St. Callixtus. This complex network of underground tunnels contains the remains of 16 popes, 9 saints, and tens of thousands of Christian martyrs, and a visit to this historic site is an emotionally overwhelming experience.
Basilica Di Santa Maria Maggiore
Basilica Di Santa Maria Maggiore is one of Rome’s most beautiful churches, covered with gorgeous mosaics and artworks. It is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and features a stunning interior with intricate ceilings and enchanting interiors. Don’t forget to explore the basilica’s impressive cloisters, which are some of the best in Rome.
The Capitoline Museums are home to the best collection of Roman and Italian art in the world. Located on the top of the Capitoline Hill, the museum is split into two palazzos and contains works from Ancient Rome, Renaissance and Baroque periods, as well as modern art. It is also worth a visit for its spectacular views across the city.
Gardens Of Villa Borghese
Located in the northern part of Rome, the Gardens of Villa Borghese is the perfect spot to relax and take in the beauty of the city. The gardens are filled with lush greenery, sculptures and monuments, and picnic areas, making it the perfect place to spend a peaceful afternoon in the sun.
Santa Costanza is a 4th century mausoleum in Rome, which was once believed to be the burial chamber of the Roman Emperor Constantine’s daughter, Constantina. The structure is unique and extraordinary, featuring a gorgeous rotunda with artworks and frescos. Explore this beautiful building and find out why it is one of the main attractions in Rome’s historic center.
Be sure to visit Palazzo Venezia, the 15th century palace which was once used by Rome’s powerful popes. Today, it is home to an art gallery and a museum, where you can view paintings, sculptures, and other works of art. The palace itself is worth a visit for its stunning artwork, frescoes, and impressive sculptures.
Mouth Of Truth
The Mouth Of Truth is an iconic Roman sculpture located in the portico of the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. The sculpture, which dates back to the 1st century, is said to tell the truth when someone places their hand in its mouth. Whether you believe the legend or not, it is worth a visit to snap a photo in front of this iconic landmark.