Rome, known as the Eternal City, has attracted visitors for over 2,000 years. It is one of the most magnificent and romantic cities in the world, boasting an attractive mix of grandiose sights — the likes of the Colosseum, Roman Pantheon and Forum — and bustling city life. Life is sweet: the cake is there for eating. Italian designer shopping, smooth ice cream, frothy cappuccino, tasty pasta and pizza, and exquisite wines to name but a few things that draw in over 4.2 million tourists in search of a taste of the Italian "dolce vita" every year.
Euro, €1 = 100 cents
Fire brigade: 115
La Città Metropolitana
Shops in Rome are normally open 9pm–1pm and 3–8pm. Department stores are usually open 24/7.
2.86 million (2019)
Tourist Information Center
Via Giovanni Giolitti, 34, Rome
(Inside the Roma Termini railway station)
Phone: +39 06 0608
Opening hours: Sun–Fri 8am–6:45pm, Sat 9:30am–6:45pm
For more information about sights, accommodation, city transport, and up-to-date listings visit the official website:
Where should one begin to summarise the history of the Eternal City? A good date might be 21 April 753 B.C., when Romulus founded the city after murdering his twin brother Remus. During the following centuries, Rome grew into a powerful empire, peaking during the rule of Marcus Aurelius in 161-180 A.D.
Like the ancient city, today's Rome is built on seven hills: Capitolino, Palatino, Quirinale, Viminale, Esquilino, Celio, and Aventino. The central area is called Campo Marzio, named after the Roman God of war, and was the ancient army’s training grounds. This is where many of the famous sights are located. Other well-known areas are Trastevere, on the other side of the Tiber river, and Monti. Little Pigneto is considered to be the most typically Roman neighbourhood.
Download our free, in-depth pdf guide for up-to-date tourist and general information on Rome, including the best places to stay, where to eat, drink, and party, as well as main attractions and must-have experiences in the Eternal City.
Top 12 represents the list of must-see attractions when planning your trip to glorious Rome. Here you will find not only iconic landmarks, ancient ruins, and elegant squares, but also fun and unforgettable experiences like a cooking class and an evening Vespa tour around Rome.
Without further ado, here's our list of the Top 12 attractions in Rome:
Fontana di Trevi
The Vatican City
St. Peter's Basilica
Pasta Cooking Class in Rome
Vespa Tour By Night
Baths of Caracalla
The vibrant capital of Italy is a unique fusion of rich history, culture, natural beauty, and monuments. It goes much further than the usual tourist sites: delve into Rome's hidden gems that are just a few steps away from the well-trodden paths and monuments.
Here's a shortlist of Rome's tucked-away treasures that will leave you taken with the city's seemingly endless offerings.
Villa Doria Pamphili
Tor Marancia Street Art
Casina delle Civette Museum
Tempietto del Bramante
Rome is one of a kind. No other city – not even Athens, Istanbul, London or New York – has as many world-class sites as the Eternal City. Walking down Via del Fori Imperiali towards the Colosseum will impress even the most spoiled and shopping-crazed teenager. The city has so much to offer: besides the Roman heritage, there are also medieval neighbourhoods, well-designed squares, colourful markets, and the Vatican City with St. Peter’s Basilica and its incredible museums.
To help you make the most out of your visit to the city, our travel experts have created a list of the top-rated tourist attractions you simply cannot miss in Rome:
Fontana di Trevi
The Vatican City
St. Peter's Basilica
Day trip to Mount Vesuvius & Pompeii from Rome
Pasta Cooking Class in Rome
Vespa Tour By Night
Baths of Caracalla
Hadrian's Villa (Villa Adriana)
Domus Aurea – Nero’s Golden House
Teatro dell'Opera di Roma
Museo di Roma
Parco degli Acquedotti
National Etruscan Museum of Villa Giulia
San Clemente Basilica
Ara Pacis Museum
VIGAMUS - The Video Game Museum of Rome
The National Roman Museum
Sant'Agnese in Agone
The Keats–Shelley Memorial House
Museo Delle Cere Di Roma (Wax Museum)
Scuderie del Quirinale
MAXXI - National Museum of 21st Century Art
Explora: The Children's Museum of Rome
Raphael in the Villa Farnesina
Palazzo delle Esposizioni
Rome's restaurants cater to all tastes. There are American steakhouses, Lebanese meze restaurants, Vietnamese eateries, and several haute cuisine establishments celebrated in the Michelin guide. But when in Rome, do as the Romans do and choose the less extravagant restaurants and trattorias for a memorable dining experience.
The Italian word for dinner, "cena", comes from the Latin convivium, which means "live together". Eating is a social get-together which consists of at least three courses — often even at lunchtime. The Romans do not eat dinner until nine in the evening.
Rome is known for its Carbonara (made with egg, guanciale, hard cheese, and black pepper) and Amatriciana (made with guanciale, pecorino Romano and tomatoes).
Below is a list of the best places to eat in Rome, Italy:
Felice a Testaccio
Spirito di Vino
Pane e Salame
Trattoria Da Cesare al Casaletto
Ginger Sapori e Salute
Va.Do al Pigneto
Reserva Restaurante y Cocteles
Hostaria Da Cesare
BaGhetto Ristorante Kosher-Portico d'Ottavia
Rinaldi Al Quirinale
Italy is a Mecca when it comes to coffee and gelato (ice cream). The Romans know exactly which cafes to visit and don't mind going across town to reach the best.
Sant' Eustachio Il Caffè
La Casa Del Caffè Tazza D'oro
Forno Campo de' Fiori
Gelateria Della Palma
Sciascia Caffè 1919
Faro - Caffè Specialty
Antico Caffè Greco
Caffetteria del Chiostro
The Romans love to meet over aperitivo around 7:30 pm, after which they either go to a restaurant or home for dinner. The drinks need not be alcoholic. Many bars serve light snacks that are included in the price.
After 11 pm most of those looking to party head over to the Testaccio area. Named after the mountain of discarded amphoras, the area is home to many establishments, ranging from small piano bars to equally small discos. Make sure you take at least a night out to experience the bar and club scene in Rome.
Bar San Calisto
La Conventicola Degli Ultramoderni
Jerry Thomas Speakeasy
The Fiddler’s Elbow
Gregory's Jazz Club
High fashion shopping in Rome is concentrated on two streets running parallel to each other from the Spanish Steps. Via Condotti is home to Prada, Valentino, Gucci, Armani, and Max-Mara. Over on Via Borgognona, one can find the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Gianfranco Ferré, Laura Biagiotti, and Gai Mattiolo. Closer to Piazza Navona is Via dei Giubbonari and its street fashion stores McQueen and Liquid. Also nearby is Via del Governo Vecchio with its elegant vintage fashion boutiques.
When it comes to food, Rome has several notable spots. Volpetti, on Via Marmorata 47 in Testaccio, is as close to heaven as you can get. This bustling, high-paced place offers many deli options—Latini pasta from Osimo, salsiccia and spicy sandwich meats. Its speciality, however, is its cheeses, including the formaggio di fossa, matured underground. Two other delis to revel in are ancient Franchi and Castroni on Via Cola di Rienzo. Castroni offers a slightly international selection. Campo de' Fiori is the site of a daily food market that embodies the terms picturesque and colourful. Come early when the shadows are long and the morning is at its freshest. Another nice market, with more of a food hall atmosphere, is Mercato di Testaccio.
Below is a list of the best places to shop in Rome:
Galleria Alberto Sordi
Vanessa Foglia Abitart
Castel Romano Designer Outlet
Fiumicino International Airport
Rome’s main airport, Leonardo da Vinci, is located in Fiumicino, 30 kilometres (18.5 miles) from the city.
There are several ways to get into the city centre from the airport:
The Leonardo Express leaves every half hour in each direction and connects the Roma Termini station with Fiumicino airport. Tickets can be bought at machines, travel agencies, ticket desks and on the website.
You can reach Rome by train directly to the Termini railway station.
The metropolitan train FM1 links the airport with regions like Fara Sabina, Orte and Poggio Mirteto. Please note that the Metro does not stop at central station Termini.
Terravision Shuttle Bus
This bus line takes you to the central station Termini.
Address: Via dell' Aeroporto di Fiumicino 320, Rome
Phone: +39 06 65951
The city’s second airport Ciampino is situated 12.0 km southeast of central Rome and is mainly served by low-cost and charter airlines.
Some low-cost airlines have their own buses. The regular buses depart from the nearby underground station Anagnina.
A taxi ride from the airport and central Rome takes 20 minutes.
Address: Via Appia Nuova 1651, Ciampino
Best Time to Visit
Rome is a traveller's darling throughout the year. The summer brings peak visitor numbers to Rome, and some of the year's highest temperatures fall in July and August. If your visit happens to be during these two months, make sure to check that your accommodation is equipped with air conditioning.
Having said that, the best time to visit Rome is from October to April when there are fewer tourists and airline fares and accommodation tend to be lower.
Frequently Asked Questions About Rome (FAQs)
Is Rome safe?
Despite being a major European capital and one of the most visited cities in the world, Rome is a fairly safe city for travellers. However, as with most main tourist destinations, pickpocketing and scams are the biggest concerns here. So be careful with your belongings when taking public transport and around the city's main attractions, and avoid canvassers.
Is Rome expensive?
Yes, Rome is quite an expensive city to visit but slightly cheaper than other European destinations, such as London and Paris, especially when it comes to accommodation. As of today, the average cost per traveller in Rome is between €80-130 per day.
Does Rome have Uber?
Yes, the Uber app does work in Rome, and it is totally legal to take one, despite what a few taxi drivers may tell you. However, because there is no UberX or UberPOOL and only Uber Black, Uber Van, and Uber Lux, fares do tend to be higher.
For more information on how to get around in Rome, read our sections Taxi and Public Transport.
Passport / Visa
Italy can be visited visa-free for up to 90 days by citizens of Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia, Israel, UAE and most countries in America. If you are unsure whether or not you need to apply for a visa, we recommend contacting the embassy or consulate in your country. International (non-Schengen) travellers need a passport that is valid for at least 3 months after the end of their intended trip to enter the Schengen zone. Citizens of Schengen countries can travel without a passport but must have a valid ID with them during their stay.
Getting around Rome is very affordable if you use public transport. The system includes three metro lines, buses, trams and urban railway (Ferrovie Urbane).
The Termini station is the hub for Rome’s transportation network. The name of the local bus and streetcar company is ATAC. All tickets must be purchased from ATAC ticket machines, newsagents, or ticket outlets on the underground. The underground runs until midnight. Night buses stop at stations marked ”N”.
There are also different choices of travel passes for 1, 3 or 7 days that are valid on all public transportation.
Taxi stands can be found throughout the city centre. It is recommended that tourists only use licensed yellow and white taxis. An extra fee is payable per suitcase to and from the airport. There is also a surcharge at night, on public holidays, and Sundays. It is cheaper to hail a taxi in the street than get one at a taxi stand or book via telephone. Tipping at 5-10% is encouraged.
Regarding the Uber app, in Rome, the UberX and UberPOOL options are not available. You can only request an Uber Black, Uber Van, or an Uber Lux, which means nicer vehicles but also higher prices.
Another way to get around Rome is by requesting a taxi through the Mytaxi app. It works similar to Uber, but it costs less.
Phone: +39 060609
The post offices are usually open 09:00-14:30 from Monday to Friday and between 09:30–13:00 on Saturdays.
Stamps can be bought at tobacconists that either carry a blue and white "Tabacchi" sign or are simply marked by the ”T” sign.
Address: Via di Porta Angelica 23, Rome
Phone: +39 06 68801276
You recognise a pharmacy in Rome by a green sign with a cross. They are open Monday-Friday 08:30-13:00 and 15:30-19:00. On Via Nazionale 228, Via Arenula 73 and Piazza Barberini, there are pharmacies open during the night time.
Country code +39
Rome area code: 06 (also dialled in Rome)
If you call Italy from abroad, you must always dial zero in the area code (do not omit it as is the general practice when making international telephone calls), e.g. +39 06 + the number.
The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. Plugs and outlets are of type F and L.