Be sure to take time to enjoy la dolce vita — even a week isn’t long enough to experience everything Roma has to offer. From historic tours through ancient Rome (Colosseum, Roman Forum) to Sunday morning shopping at the Porta Portese flea market to climb to the top of St. Peter’s Basilica, this city is bursting with things to do. You can help your chances of returning to Roma by tossing a coin in the Trevi Fountain; fate might just bring you back to the Eternal City, or so the legend goes.
Walk around the San Lorenzo District. This studenty district, just to the southeast of Stazione Termini is Rome at its most alternative. Packed with cheap eateries, lefty-leaning bars, and boutique shops, it’s a welcome break from the touristy center. Plus, it’s the home of the best chocolate in Rome – the chocolate factory at SAID – try their hot chocolate, you won’t be disappointed!
Cool off on a hot day in summer by slipping into the dark, cool air of several Roman churches to check out these amazing Caravaggio’s: The Calling of St. Matthew at San Luigi dei Francis, Madonna of Loreto in the Basilica of Sant’Agostino and The Crucifixion of St Peter and Conversion on the Way to Damascus in Santa Maria del Popolo.
Just a 15-minute drive from the city center, head to Monte Mario, Rome’s highest peak. Though it’s slightly off the beaten path for most tourists, the glistening view of the entire city is well worth an evening visit.
Head to the local area of Trastevere and take a stroll around the cobbled streets before choosing one of the many excellent local restaurants. It’s a picturesque neighborhood which has the look and feels of a traditional small Italian town, with people shopping, chatting and drinking espresso at the pavement cafes.
Legend or truth? The only female Pope in history? Not far from the Colosseum, pay a visit to the Shrine of Pope Joan (Via dei Querceti).
Head to the Capuchin Crypt (Church of Santa Maria della Concezione) to see the bones of some 4,000 dead Capuchin monks and decayed skeletons strangely arranged in the most beautiful and decorative designs.
Visit the Galleria Borghese (in Villa Borghese park) to see artworks by Caravaggio, Bernini, and Titian. Both the art and the building are extravagantly breathtaking.
Spend the day exploring the EUR zone of Rome where you’ll experience the city’s fascist architecture. Immerse yourself into ancient Roman life at the Roman Civilization Museum, get to know real, deep Italian folk culture at the Museo delle Arti e Tradizioni Popolari and finally, see a modern, square colosseum.
Take the elevator up to the National Monument of Victor Emmanuel II (in Piazza Venezia and also commonly referred to as the Wedding Cake building) and take in a stunning panoramic view of the city.
Get an amazing view of Rome through the Knights of Malta Keyhole on Aventine Hill – one of Rome’s best-kept secrets. Use the footpath Via San Sabina to Piazza Cavalieri di Malta. You’ll also get a great view of Trastevere and St Peter from the Orange Garden at Santa Sabina.
Visit San Giovanni di Laterano (or Saint John’s in Lateran) Church. San Giovanni is the first Christian Basilica built in the world and the original Papal seat until the 15th century, consecrated and dedicated to the Savior in A.D. 324.