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Fun Things to do in Rome

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city guide

Beginning in the eighth century B.C., Ancient Rome grew from a small town on central Italys Tiber River into an empire that at its peak encompassed most of continental Europe, Britain, much of western Asia, northern Africa and the Mediterranean islands. Among the many legacies of Roman dominance are the widespread use of the Romance languages (Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Romanian) derived from Latin, the modern Western alphabet and calendar and the emergence of Christianity as a major world religion.

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Best time to go

The best things to do in Romethose famous artistic, archaeological and architectural treasures you see in every guidebookare a year-round draw, but how you enjoy them will be dictated by your choice of season. During the colder months you may have to contend with some bitter weather, but crowds will be decidedly thinner (and some of the citys best hotels will be at a discount). Some may find hordes in the summer heat unbearable, but the fine weather brings a plethora of splendid outdoor events, not to mention the opportunity to sit outside and enjoy the citys finest restaurants and bars. No matter what season you choose, there are plenty of things to do to make the most of your visit.

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Fun city facts and activities

    What isnt there to do in Rome? The Italian capital is one of the worlds most famous cities, maybe even historys most famous, so finding a veritable treasure trove of excitement and attractions here is no great shock. It would be weirder if Rome wasnt home to vast archaeological treasures, iconic art collections and cultural heritage on every corner. Still, the Eternal City doesnt disappoint, and the best things to do in Rome are some of the very best on the planet.

    History headlines but does not dominate. Partygoers will find all sorts of excitement in the citys clubs, rooftop bars and wider nightlife, while bargain hunters can look forward to some of the most fascinating markets on the continent. Also, did someone say gelato? Yeah, plenty of that as well. There is no end of things to do in Rome, but these are the best of the best.
City facts

Neighborhoods to explore

    Monti
    Trastevere
    Prati
    Testaccio
    Pigneto
    Centocelle
    Ostiense
    Garbatella
Neighborhoods

Restaurants
Food Specialties

    We all know the saying when in Rome, do as the Romans, but to do as the Romans, one must eat as the Romans do. Thats good news for visitors because the best restaurants in Rome are some of the best on the planet, not to mention some of the most romantic. The menus in Rome are a celebration of flavours and ingredients that invoke images of tradition, delicious, delicious images at that. There are so many things to do in Rome that trying to tick them all off is nigh on impossible task, but you might as well try. Thatll take plenty of sustenance, so get that appetite ready for something special.
Restaurants
Events

Rome Offbeat activities

Free or cheap things to do

1. Go on a guided tour of the Jewish Ghetto: Get a behind-the-scenes look at the Jewish Ghetto, one of the oldest areas of Rome and explore its rich history with a knowledgeable guide.

2. Visit the citys catacombs: Explore the citys underground burial chambers and uncover the secrets of the early Christian population.

3. Take a cooking class: Learn how to make traditional Roman dishes and taste your own creations.

4. Visit the abandoned amusement park: Wander through the abandoned amusement park near the Appian Way and explore a unique piece of Romes history.

5. Take a graffiti tour: Discover the street art of Rome and learn about the culture and history behind it.

6. Go on a street food tour: Sample all the best street food Rome has to offer and learn about the citys culinary culture.

7. Take a tour of the

Offbeat activites
Kid friendly

Fun things to do in with kids

Free or cheap things to do

1- Visit the impressive Colosseum with a kid-friendly guide
The Colosseum always makes an impression on children and it is a wonderful place to visit as a family.
The best Colosseum tickets to get are those including the underground (with the lift used to bring up the animals usually a highlight for kids!) and the top tier, from where you get stunning views.

2- Explore the Roman Forum and the Palatine hill including where Roman kids used to play marbles!
The Roman Forum and the Palatine hill lie beside the Colosseum and are a wonderful place to explore with kids.
Go in spring for the best experience and make sure you get all the way up to the Palatine Hill: kids tend to love it here as if feels a little bit like a park, with lots of open spaces, and the massive ruins of the Emperors Palace and the view over Rome never fail to impress!

3- Look at the sky from inside the Pantheon
The Pantheon is an ancient temple now turned church with something special: a massive hole in the roof (by design, it is called oculus)!
Kids and adults are left to wonder what happens when it rains but even on a dry day you can engage your children in trying to figure it out!

4- Catch a view from the top of the Vittoriano
The Vittoriano is a strange looking building overlooking Piazza Venezia and locals refer to it with a nickname that highlights its peculiarity: we call it the typewriter (English speakers often say wedding cake)
The building is unmissable and has something special: a wonderful terrace with glorious views over Rome.

5- See the she-wolf on the Campidoglio hill Romes kid friendly animal symbol
The symbol of Rome is a she-wolf feeding two children: Romes founder Romolo and his brother Remo.
You can see her depicted in many parts of Rome but the best place to get acquainted with her is on the Campidoglio hill: challenge your kids to spot her (she is outside, free for all to see)!

6- Cross and international border entering Vatican City
The Vatican is a state within a State and entering St Peters square effectively means crossing an international border!
There is no border control as such between Rome and the Vatican but the Vatican City is an independent State and they have their own stamps, euro and security, the Swiss Guards.

7- Take an open-bus tour of the Vatican Gardens
At the back of St Petes Basilica lie the stunning Vatican Gardens, vast and immaculately kept.
The gardens are only open to visitors via guided tours and they are not a place for kids to run around.

8-Climb St Peters dome the most exciting place in Rome for kids who love high places
Older kids and fit parents may love the climb up to St Peters dome.
Not for the faint of heart or if you are at all prone to claustrophobia, the climb rewards your effort with probably the most beautiful view over Rome you can get.

9-Spy St Peters dome from a keyhole
If you prefer to see the dome for afar, take the easier climb to the top of the Aventine hill.
Here lies a small square with a large black door protecting the institute of the Maltese Knights. Get the kids to spy through the keyhole and enjoy their delighted surprise. The keyhole frames the dome perfectly!

10- Throw a coin into the Trevi Fountain
Do you want to come back to Rome? Then you simply must throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain: tradition says if you do so, you are sure to return to the Eternal city, something sure worth a penny!

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City data and FAQ 

Is it worth it going to Rome?
It's the kind of place you either love or hate and most inevitably love it. Rome is a city with layers of history, where next to ancient archeological sites you will find modern state-of-the-art buildings. For as touristy as it is, the Italian capital has very much remained true to itself.

Why is Rome so popular?
Rome, the Eternal City, brims with ancient history, from the Colosseum to the port of Ostia Antica to majestic Vatican City and the Sistine Chapel. Because of its history, art, architecture, and beauty and perhaps its gelato and pasta! Rome is one of our most popular cities.

How many days in Rome is enough?
Four or seven days. To add context, if you are doing a multi-city Italian journey, you should allocate at least 4 days to Rome if you arrive early on day 1 and leave late on day 4. Otherwise, consider 5 days. Ideally, you'll have 3 completely full days dedicated to Rome additional to your arrival and departure day.

Is Rome walkable city?
Very shortly, yes, it is. Walking in Rome is like walking in a very busy open-air museum.

What is a typical breakfast in Rome?
A typical breakfast for a Roman looks like a quick coffee and a pastry, eaten standing at the bar. A frothy cappuccino and a warm cornetto is the most common combination. Italian cornetti are sweeter than French croissants and come vuoto (plain) or filled with jam, custard or Nutella.

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