Famed the world over for its art and architecture, the capital of Italy perfectly combines the ancient and the modern to guarantee a truly memorable city-break.
Rome, the capital of Italy, is one of Europe’s most visited cities, and it is easy to see why. The magnificent architecture of its countless monuments charts its rich culture history, spanning over two and a half thousand years from its founding in 753 BC. Combine this with the renowned vibrancy and hospitality of its residents, and you will be guaranteed the holiday of a lifetime.
Discover the origins of the city when you explore the many ancient edifices still standing today. A visit to the Roman Forum will show you the political and cultural hub of the classical capital. Step back in time and imagine yourself facing gladiatorial combat when you tour the awe-inspiring Colosseum. Look out for the live archaeological excavations, as ever more historical treasures are unearthed.
Many enjoyable hours can be spent wandering through the narrow cobbled streets. At almost every turn you will stumble upon a beautiful view or fascinating example of art and design. Many of the city’s most famous attractions are simply an integral part of the cityscape, and free to view. For example, you can spend an evening sitting on the Spanish Steps, soaking up the relaxed atmosphere, or marvel at the magnificent Trevi Fountain, with its masterfully carved statues of Roman sea gods.
Once you have worked up an appetite, you will be treated to some of the finest of Italian dishes. Whilst the whole of Italy is famous for its cuisine, that of the capital is possibly the best. Whether you chose spaghetti “ajo e ojo”, with olive oil, garlic and chilli, or a dish based on the widely-used artichoke, you will be sure to be tasting delicious local produce.
Religion is inextricably intertwined with the history of Rome. The Vatican City, the heart of the Catholic Church, lies within the city limits. Visitors are welcome to explore this walled enclave, the smallest independent state in the world. Do bear in mind the dress code when planning your visit. Shoulders and knees must be covered, otherwise you will be denied entry. Once inside, you will discover a wealth of art and treasures within some of the most iconic buildings in the western hemisphere. St Peter’s Basilica, the largest church in the world, houses masterpieces by artists such as Michelangelo and Raphael. You must not miss the world-famous frescoes adorning the Sistine Chapel.
If you plan to explore this wonderful city on foot, equip yourself with a detailed map, and make sure you plan many refreshment breaks at the charming cafés in the city’s piazzas. Alternatively, the city is well-served by both bus and Metro routes.