Written by Reb,
Rome is best known for its exquisite food and magnificent cultural attractions. It is a city with thousands of years worth of history and culture. First time visitors of this location are in for a treat. With the sheer amount of sounds, tastes, and people, Rome has many experiences to offer potential guests. In addition, endless sight seeing opportunities are available to you in Rome’s diverse cityscape. You could spend weeks wandering and still not have seen and sampled everything you wanted to. So the question remains, how can you plan out the perfect trip with so much food to try and so many sights to see? To lessen your travel burdens, and give you some peace of mind, this guide will tell you what foods are worth eating, and which sites are worth visiting on your trip to Rome.
5 Sights to See
Rome is home to several significant cultural and historical sites. The following are five must-see attractions to visit while in the city. There are many other worthwhile places to see, but these five, in particular, should be seen by every tourist that visits Italy.
Attraction #1 (The Colosseum)
When one thinks of Rome, they invariably think of the towering Colosseum. A marvel of its time and a cultural centerpiece of the Roman empire, this structure stands at an impressive 50 meters, and once held 50,000 spectators. Within this oval-shaped stadium, ancient people of all classes saw some of the bloodiest entertainment available at the time. Gladiator battles were especially popular among the public. In these events, slaves and criminals fought to the death in gruesome combat bouts. Other popular spectacles included animal fights, executions, and re-enacted naval battles. Nowadays, the Colosseum is much more tame. The site was newly named as one of the seven wonders of the world and acts as a cultural monument. Though the amphitheater has suffered from elemental damage, vandalism, and neglect over the centuries it still stands as an impressive symbol of a long past civilization. Today, the Colosseum is visited by millions of tourists each year, so make sure to buy tickets in advance. The lines can get pretty long!
Attraction #2 (The Forum and Palatine Hill)
After visiting the Colosseum, you should head over to the nearby Roman Forum. This cluster of buildings was at the heart of the Empire. All of Rome’s most important decisions were made on these grounds. The site contains many ruins, and while the buildings aren’t perfectly intact, you can still get a sense of what it was like to live back in early Rome. If you are interested in seeing ancient temples, markets, or important administrative buildings this site is the perfect place for a step back into the past.
A short distance from the forum is the Palatine hill. This is one of seven famous hills in Rome and said to be the founding site of the city. After a walk up this natural wonder, you can see the imperial palace of the emperor Augustus. The hill also boasts great views of the Forum and other sites. If you are interested you can overlook the Circus Maximus, a chariot racing stadium used by the ancients. Overall, if you are looking for a peaceful walk and a quiet exploration of the past these two sites are a must.
Attraction #3 (The Trevi Fountain)
The next stop on your trip through Rome would be the Trevi Fountain. Out of all the fountains in Europe, the Trevi is one of the most recognizable, and also one of the most crowded. This beautiful baroque style structure depicts Poseidon and other mythological creatures. In addition, it recently received a multimillion euro refurbishment and opened up to the public again in 2015.
While you visit the breath-taking Trevi, don’t forget to take a photo and toss a couple of coins into the fountain. Legend has it that if you toss coins over your shoulder and into the water you will come back to Rome, and have one wish granted.
Attraction #4 (The Vatican and St. Peter’s Square)
As one of the most popular pilgrimage sites in the world, and the most visited places in Italy, the Vatican and St. Peter’s Square are places you can’t miss out on. These crucial holy sites lie at the heart of the Roman Catholic Church. Surrounded by guards, the Vatican is home to the pope and other clerics and nuns of the church. Church members are the only people permitted to live on the premises, but you can visit the grounds for free. To get to this holy place, you first have to travel through St. Peter’s Square. The St. Peter’s Square functions as a gathering place for the church’s followers. Each week the pope addresses the church and gives out his blessing. Thousands of people of the Catholic faith fill the area to see him. When visiting Rome you can take part in this ceremony, but be warned, the square fills up fast and can be quite cramped.
Attraction #5 (St. Peter’s Basilica)
We end this list with St. Peter’s Basilica. This famous church is located in the middle of Vatican square. This is another perfect spot for anyone on a budget. Like the Vatican, the site is open to the public free of charge. You can visit any day of the week, except on Wednesdays. On this day the pope makes his appearance to those in the square from the balcony of the church. As a result, the building is shut down for the day. If you are interested in getting a glimpse of him, this area of Rome might interest you. In addition, for an extra fee, you can go further into the structure of the church, and climb its 500 plus stairs to the top. Whatever you decide to do in this location, you’ll be able to take in another beautiful piece of Roman history.
4 Foods to Eat,
From pizzas. to pastas, to pastries, and many other foods, Rome has a variety of familiar and foreign cuisine to offer tourists. In this food capital of the world, you can find great local eats at every corner. There are charming food stands with pizza cones, sophisticated cafe’s to get a cup of coffee, and fine dining establishments if you want to spend an extra buck. You may find yourself overwhelmed by all the food choices, but never fear! Here are four inexpensive and delicious food options for you to start with and try on your trip.
When you travel, you walk a lot, and with the Italian heat, you might need to cool down after hours of exploring. So what better way to keep your trip going than with a chilly dessert. Gelato is the perfect snack for a hot summer day. Gelato is a lot like ice-cream but is ultimately a lot more satisfying. This extra creamy hand made dessert comes in all sorts of strange and sweet flavors. For a few euros, you can enjoy a scoop of one of Europe’s most popular sweets.
2.Pizza al Taglio
Pizza al Taglio, the Italian equivalent of slice of pizza, is one of the best food investments you’ll make on your trip. Sold in large square pieces, locals and tourists all over Rome enjoy this quick and inexpensive bite to eat. Slices come in all sorts of savory flavors. You can get a basic red marinara sauce with cheese. Meat is a welcome addition to a slice, and if you are feeling a little adventurous, pumpkin toppings are a tasty option. Spice can also add more to this delectable street food. Really there are plenty of gourmet ingredients you can add to suit your tastes to this native Roman pizza.
If you are a pasta lover you are going to love this rich dish. Introduced in the 1950’s, and supposedly invented by an American, Rigatoni has been crafted to perfection in Rome. It is definitely a must try food. Try this thick creamy pasta al-dente with plenty of cheese. You won’t regret it!
Last on this food preview is another sweet dish. If you are a chocolate lover, you have to try these small but tasty pastries. Typically eaten for breakfast, Maritozzi bread buns are filled with chocolate and are the perfect way to start your morning. They are typically found in espresso bars, and cafe’s. If you want to make them a little sweeter, you can purchase them in the afternoon. Vendors typically fill them with whip-cream after breakfast. In Rome, locals usually enjoy this dessert with a cup of espresso, so you should give this combination a whirl.
Rome has much to offer its visitors, and this article is just a taste of what this city has to offer you. From the ancient Colosseum, to the winding corridors of the Vatican, to the marvels of the Trevi, to the mouth watering food, Rome has something that everyone can enjoy. A city of unrivaled beauty, adventure, and history.
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