There is an old Latin saying “Omnes viae Romam ducunt” which means “All roads lead to Rome” and it is an undeniable fact. Rome attracts millions of visitors every year as the “Eternal City” has a magical lure to make people fall in love with the city at first sight.
Rome is an enchanting city with breathtaking ancient architecture, fascinating fountains, incredible works of art and absolutely mouth watering cuisine. It is one of the best places to enjoy the Dolce Vita lifestyle by immersing yourself in the world of art, history and the finest experiences the capital has to offer.
Exploring Rome with our article will be as exciting as visiting this wonderful and magnetic city.
Let’s have a look at the 10 must-visit places in Rome which we have thoroughly selected for you.
1. Trevi Fountain
Trevi Fountain (Three street Fountain) is never a lonely place as it is the most stunning and the largest fountain in the city. There are lots of people always throwing coins into the fountain as one coin encourages you to return to Rome, two coins are for those seeking love and three coins promises you to hear the wedding bell. The coins are collected every night and given to the Italian charity called Caritas.
Gian Lorenzo Bernini was commissioned to sketch renovations to the existed fountain in 1629; the project was abandoned as the Pope died. The Roman-born architect Nicola Salvi won the project in 1732 and Giuseppe Pannini completed the fountain in 1762 after Salvi’s death. It is wonderful place which attracts tourist throughout the world as the fountain was featured in some of the most outstanding Italian films as La Dolce Vita, Roman Holiday and Three Coins in the Fountain. Your trip will never be complete without visiting this marvelous place!
2. Piazza Navona
Not far from the Trevi Fountain, you will find one more beautiful location in Rome. The Baroque square Piazza Navona is full of street artists, painters, musicians and majestic buildings which add a charming atmosphere to the scene.
The Square was built in 15th century and has become one of the most favourite touristic destinations. The most beautiful parts of the square are its three fountains: Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, Fontana Del Moro and Fontana Del Nettuno. The baroque church of Sant’Agnese in Agone provides an impressive backdrop to the square.
The next destination should definitely be on your bucket list. Colosseum is one of the most recognizable and iconic locations in the world and a symbol of mightiness of the Roman Empire. It is one of the most visited landmarks in Rome and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Colosseum deserves to be called the New Seventh Wonder of the World.
The Colosseum is known as the Flavian Amphitheatre and was commissioned in 72 AD by Emperor Vespasian and completed by his son Titus in 80 AD. This building was used to hold games, gladiator tournaments and other forms of entertainment and would regularly be attended by the Roman Emperors.
4. Pantheon di Roma
The next remarkable place to see is breathtaking Pantheon. Michelangelo is believed to have seen the building and said that it was work of angels not humans. The Pantheon is the only structure of its age and size that has successfully survived the damage of time and gravity, still intact with all its splendor and beauty.
Pantheon was commissioned by Marcus Agrippa between 25 and 27 BC and it was first built as a temple of twelve gods. The present building is believed to have been reconstructed by the emperor Hadrian between 118 and 125 AD.
The oculus, the only source of natural light in Pantheon, is a round opening in the centre of the dome. Painter Raphael and a few Italian kings are buried in the Pantheon.
5. Piazza San Pietro
St Peter’s Square located in the heart of Vatican is the best known squares in the world. It was designed by Gian Lorenzo Bernini between 1656 and 1667 with the support of Pope Alexander XII. Millions of tourists gather here to dive into the history of the Mighty Roman Empire.
The scale of the piazza is astonishing: at its largest it measures 320m by 240m. There are 284 columns and, atop the colonnades, 140 saints. The 25m obelisk in the centre was brought to Rome by Caligula from Heliopolis in Egypt.
In 1613 a fountain designed by Carlo Maderno was installed on the square, to the right of the centrally located obelisk. To maintain symmetry, Bernini decided to install an identical copy of the fountain on the left side. The fountain was created in 1677 by Carlo Fontana.
6. St Peter’s Basilica
The next Vatican highlight is St Peter’s Basilica. It is situated on Vatican Hill in the UNESCO world heritage site of Vatican City; the magnificent St Peter’s Basilica is the centre of pilgrimage and tourism attraction.
The basilica was called St Peter’s after one of Jesus’s twelve disciples known as Saint Peter, who became one of the founders of the Catholic Church and was executed in Rome and buried where the Basilica now stands.
Inside, visitors will find extremely impressive pieces of art, including St. Peter’s Baldachin, a large bronze baldachin designed by Bernini, The Pietà, a sculpture by Michelangelo and the statue of St Peter on his throne. One of the most impressive parts of the Basilica is its incredible dome. Its design was started by Michelangelo and continued by Giacomo Della Porta. Carlo Maderno finished the dome in 1614.
7. Vatican Museums
When Visiting Rome and Vatican you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to visit the Vatican Museums. It is a treasure house of classical and historical artworks which has been accumulated by popes for many centuries. Located within the confines of the Vatican state, the museums hold over 70,000 pieces of artwork.
Split into several different section, the museums include the Museo Pio-Clementino, the Museum Chiaramonti, the Museo Gregoriano Etrusco and the Museo Gregoriano Egiziano each of which contains different artworks and themes.
8. The Sistine Chapel
Sistine Chapel regarded as Michelangelo’s masterpiece is a jaw dropping attraction which is worth visiting at least once in your lifetime.
What grabs the attention in the Sistine Chapel is not only its architecture, but especially the frescoes that completely cover the walls and the ceiling. Some of the most important artists who worked in the chapel are Botticelli, Perugino, Luca and Michelangelo.
Without any doubt, The Creation of Adam is the best-known image from the Sistine Chapel. It is located in the central part of the vault and represents the story from Genesis in which God gives life to Adam.
Our full article on Sistine chapel read here.
9. Piazza di Spagna
Piazza di Spagna is one more location which appeals both tourists and locals by its vibrant atmosphere and a great example of the Roman Baroque Style. The Spanish Steps is a staircase designed in 1723 by Francesco De Sanctis, and funded by a French diplomat Stefano Gueffier.
It is a place for artists, painters and poets to visit. Today, at the top of the Spanish Steps you will find a cluster of artists painting visitor’s portraits.
During mid April-May each year the steps are decorated with pink azaleas, making for great photos.
Piazza di Spagna is a home to the city’s fanciest boutiques on Via dei Condotti, Rome’s legendary shopping street.
Rome has some wonderful modern art museums too. MAXXI (Museum of 21st Century Art) is arguably the best place to see modern and contemporary art. The building itself is a huge draw—designed by Zaha Hadid, it’s all glass, big open spaces, and staircases that seem to float in the air.
Rome is an undeniably charming city with plethora of grand architecture, picturesque squares and cosy streets and is really worth visiting.
We hope you enjoyed our selection of must see places and you will spend an absolutely wonderful time wandering around the Eternal City.