Rome is one of those cities that is full of history and adventure, a city that could easily take a lifetime to explore. For those of us who don’t have that lifetime, we need to learn to make the most of our time. Out of the seemingly countless landmarks and attractions to see in Rome, the following 12 are definite must-sees:
1. The Colosseum
A truly epic monument to the gladiatorial battles of old, the Colosseum dates back to 72 AD. The Flavian amphitheatre was built to seat an enormous audience of 50,000. The site of many grisly deaths, this historical location is a necessary stop for any history buff.
2. The Pantheon
Constructed by the Emperor Hadrian from 119 to 128 AD, the Pantheon is an architectural marvel. The temple was initially constructed as a monument for ancient deities and today serves as the resting place for the artist Raphael and Italy’s first president. The building still retains its original bronze doors.
3. The Capitoline
The Capitoline museums are housed in twin palaces and constitute the oldest public art display in the world. The collection was opened to the public in 1734 and contains famous works by Titian, Caravaggio, Tintoretto, Bernini, and Veronese.
4. Villa Borghese Gardens
With all of the excitement in the city, taking a break every now and then for a relaxing stroll can be a blessing. In the gardens, children and adults alike can walk, ride ponies, and feed the many turtles that can be found in the pond.
5. Trevi Fountain
Whether admiring the beauty of the fountain or tossing a coin in while making a wish, everyone can find something to enjoy at the Trevi fountain. Tucked away in a modest little piazza, the beautiful cascading water and gorgeous architecture are sure to entrance you.
6. Roman Forum
If you enjoy the Colosseum, the Roman Forum is a must. Located at the center of the city, the Forum contains many of Rome’s ancient government buildings and temples. If you can, take a guided tour to best enjoy all the important history that transpired on those very grounds.
7. La Bocca della Verita
In English “the mouth of truth”, this landmark is located outside of the Church of Santa Maria. Legend says that a liar will have their hand bitten off when they insert it in the mouth, a myth that is put to the test in the iconic film, “Roman Holiday”.
8. Il Gelato di San Crispino
Enjoying gelato is an essential part of any trip to Rome. Many agree that the best gelato in the city can be found at Il Gelato di San Crispino. The flavors change with the seasons ensuring every visitor has a taste of the new and delicious.
9. Via Condotti
One of the most famous shopping streets in Rome, the Via Condotti contains numerous historical buildings and boutiques. You can start at the renowned Spanish Steps and continue down the the street browsing and enjoying the hustle and bustle.
10. Pont Sant’Angelo
This beautiful bridge spanning the Tiber, adorned with ten picturesque angels designed by Bernini, not only provides the tourists with a breathtaking view of the city and water but with a wonderful testament to the last work of a truly remarkable artist.
11. Campo de’Fiori
The oldest market in all of Rome, the Campo de’Fiori is full of flowers, vegetables, and fruits during the day and a lively restaurant and bar atmosphere at night. The engaging environment hardly reminds one of the fact that many were put to death in that very place!
12. Piazza Navona
The home of Bernini’s Fountain of the Four Rivers is a beautiful place to enjoy a lovely meal and delicious Tartufo ice cream. Under the historical buildings lies the Circus Domitianus in which were held the amazing ancient Roman races. The piazza is also a wonderful location to people watch.