A Weekend in Rome: What to See and Where to Eat in the Eternal City
We spent a couple of days (and left our hearts forever) in the splendidly wonderful Rome. Here is a little guide of this wonderful city, whose history and beauty enchanted us!
WHAT TO SEE IN ROME
* THE COLOSSEUM, THE ROMAN FORUM AND THE IMPERIAL FORUM. A breathtakingly beautiful icon of Rome, the Colosseum is a stop you absolutely cannot miss, as are the Roman Forum and the Imperial Forum, which are some of the world’s most famous and fascinating archeological areas. To avoid the line, we suggest you purchase tickets in advance!
* THE MONTI DISTRICT. The Monti district is, in our opinion, one of the most enchanting areas of the city. Walking through the steep alleys of this district, through the historic buildings covered in vine, you can find art galleries and trendy places, but also artisanal bottegas, vintage clothing shops and typical trattorias.
* THE FOUNTAIN OF TREVI. It has been said that throwing a coin from behind over your shoulder into this legendary fountain is a guarantee that you are to return to the eternal city: whether it be true or not, we threw a coin in and we suggest you stop by and do the same!
* PIAZZA NAVONA. This elegant baroque square, between street side cafés, street artists and tourists, is one of the most loved and vibrant of the city. Hop on over and let yourself be transported away by the joyous atmosphere!
* CAMPO DE’ FIORI. A market for food, flowers and different products during the day and a meeting point in the evening, Campo de’ Fiori, from pubs to outdoor restaurants, is one of the city’s most folkloric. During our visit, between the uproar and vibrant atmosphere, we were sure not to miss the statue of Giordano Bruno, who was burned in this very square on charges of heresy.
* PIAZZA DI SPAGNA, THE FASHION STREETS AND THE TRINITA’ DEI MONTI STAIRCASE. In a single word: elegance. From the majestic palaces, the fountain of Pietro Bernini and the haute couture shops, elegance is the main characteristic of Piazza di Spagna. After a walk and some shopping through the streets, if you wish to burn off a dish of pasta or simply enjoy the fantastic view, you can climb the 135 stairs that lead up to the Basilica della Trinità dei Monti.
* THE GARDENS AT VILLA BORGHESE. If you have time, take a stroll (or enjoy a picnic) in this enormous park, which offers different attractions, including: kiosks, the zoological bio park, the Museum and Galleria Borghese, a toy library for children and the Silvano Toti Globe Theatre, the only Elizabethan theatre in Italy. What do you say, is there something there for you?
* PIAZZA SAN PIETRO AND THE MUSEUMS OF THE VATICAN. Due to time constraints, we were not able to enter the monumental Basilica of St. Peter, but if you do have the time, be patient (the line is always long) and visit it, as it sure is worth it! As for the Vatican Museums, however, by purchasing tickets online you can avoid the crowd (at least partially) and let yourself be enchanted by one of the largest collections of art in the world.
WHERE TO EAT IN ROME
* TRADITIONAL DISHES AT TRATTORIA VECCHIA ROMA. Lovers of home cooked meals? This is the place for you! In this restaurant, which has been open for about a hundred years, you can enjoy traditional Roman dishes, the bucatini ‘cacio and pepe’ to oxtail. If you do stop here you have to try the house specialty: the bucatini ‘amatriciana flambè’!
* LIGHT DISHES AT GINA EAT & DRINK. For a light lunch break, we suggest you try ‘Gina’, a small – but lovely – bistrot near Piazza di Spagna. Here you’ll find abundant salads and original sandwiches. At Gina you can also purchase a ‘picnic basket’ for an unforgettable lunch in the gardens of Villa Borghese!
* A SNACK AT PANELLA. Panella, a chic bar/bakery, is the perfect place at any time: coffee (try the ‘Panellino’) with a croissant in the morning, rice balls and stuffed rustic at lunch and cocktails and salty delights in the evening!
* VEGETARIAN DISHES AT IL MARGUTTA RISTORANTE. Rome is not famous for its vegetarian restaurants, but if you fancy a ‘cruelty-free’ dinner this restaurant/art gallery is for you. Here, among traditional Roman dishes, you can find more innovative options, like ginger-infused tofu, breaded meatballs made with goat cheese or tagliolini pasta with broccoli, raisins and almonds.
* SNACK OR APERITIVO AT ROSATI. For a coffee (with a sweet bite) or a gourmet aperitivo, I highly suggest this historic bar, located right on the Piazza del Popolo. Let yourself be seduced by the sweet or salty treats!
* THE GELATO AT GIOLITTI. Whether it be summer or winter, you can’t visit Rome and not try this historic ice cream shop! Small word of advice: try the ‘Gnutella’ taste!
The list of places to visit and eat at in Rome is pretty much infinite, and unfortunately a weekend simply wasn’t enough to try them all. Other than an (unmissable) visit to the Giardino degli Aranci, here is a list of restaurants that were suggested to us, but that we unfortunately didn’t have a chance to try:
What do you say, are you going to book a ticket to the wonderful Eternal City?
Read the original article on Conosco un Posto. This English version was translated by Kelsey Rivett.