If you’re lucky enough to embark on a trip through Rome, Italy’s capital, you’ll notice that the streets of the Eternal City have thousands of marvelous secrets to unravel. From beautiful architecture to stunning fountains to delicious food, everything about the city makes my heart beat faster.
I will always remember the sights that impressed me most of all during my first Roman holiday. If you are planning your first trip to Rome and your time is limited, I advise you to visit these 9 beautiful sights in Rome.
1. ROMAN FOUNTAINS
The English poet Shelley once said “the fountains in themselves are worth a journey to Rome”. It is really so – there is no other European capital, where you can find so many fountains, built in different historical periods. I recommend you to find your own favorite while exploring the city – you will see fountains of rare beauty on almost every square of Rome. I like the Turtle Fountain in Piazza Mattei and a small fountain with a pigeon on the Aventine Hill.
One of the most famous and splendid fountains of the world, Fontana di Trevi, is also located in Rome. Come here early in the morning – you will avoid hordes of tourists and imagine yourself being the heroine of the film La Dolce Vita by Federico Fellini.
This majestic Pantheon building is amazing in its austere beauty. It was first the pagan temple and then became the Christian church. Nowadays “the temple of all gods” keeps the tombs of famous Italians: the great artist Raphael is among them. Being inside, stand in the centre, look at the huge dome with the hole (the dome is not supported by any pillars!) and just think that this engineering achievement was made about 2000 years ago.
Yes, the Roman Colosseum is the most popular place of interest in Rome, yes, all tourists know about it, but I can’t help mentioning it. This monument of ancient Roman culture is worth visiting: its grandeur astonishes everybody. After seeing the Colosseum I advise you to walk among the ruins of Roman Forum. Congratulations, now you fully feel the spirit of antiquity!
4. PIAZZA NAVONA
The vibrant Piazza Navona square attracts me by its architecture – several buildings of palazzo, the Baroque church and three spectacular fountains. The architectural ensemble is often considered to be the confrontation between two great architects – Bernini and Borromini, but I think that they complement each other. It is a real pleasure to walk through this square, contemplate the details of statues of the fountains, or just sit drinking coffee and eating strawberries.
5. THE SPANISH STEPS
Do you remember this scene from Roman Holiday when Audrey Hepburn eats gelato on the stairs somewhere in Rome? Unfortunately we can’t eat anything on the Spanish Steps – it is forbidden by law. But nobody can prevent us from sitting and relaxing at these beautiful stairs. This place made Rome the most romantic city in the world for me: my boyfriend offered me his hand and heart at the top of the Spanish Steps!
6. GARDENS OF ROME
My favorite garden is called the Orange Garden and is situated on the Aventine Hill. If you find the strength to climb it, you will be rewarded. Orange trees, few people and the fantastic view of the city – it is the perfect place to escape from the bustling city centre.
7. VILLA BORGHESE
The most popular garden in Rome is likely the park of Villa Borghese. It is also easy to have a rest from crowds of tourists here, because the park is very large. Renting a boat and indolent sailing in the pond is a great idea on a sunny day.
On the way back to the city centre through Piazza del Popolo and Via del Babuino I often go to the Cafe Pompi, where you can try delicious tiramisu. Big portion costs only €4.
8. PIAZZA SAN PIETRO
Vatican City needs a special story, but even if you visit only Piazza San Pietro and St. Peter’s Basilica, you will be impressed. The biggest Christian cathedral in the world looks elegant and harmonious, and the smooth lines of the colonnade create ideal architectural forms. Get into the line (be ready, it may seem endless), enter the cathedral and climb the dome – a breathtaking view of Rome is waiting for you.
Before visiting this cozy district of Rome, walk along the embankment of the Tiber. It is deserted and mysterious: I never felt such atmosphere on the smart embankments in the centre of other European capitals.
Trastevere shows you the life of real Romans. They don’t pay any attention to tourists, and this is a great chance to try to understand Italian national character. In this district you can also have the best supper in Rome (which will be the cheapest at the same time). I like the restaurant Casetta di Trastevere, but it is just one of dozens of good restaurants.
All these wonderful sights can become the beginning for the long-lasting romance with the Eternal City. Remember the words of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: “Who has seen Italy and especially Rome can never again be unhappy deep inside.”
Have you visited stunning sights in Rome? Share your favorites in the comments below.
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