Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (2023)

  • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (1)

Have you heard a proverb that Rome wasn´t built in a day? You will observe this reality in the Italian metropolis on almost every step of yours. In each building and every street, there are thousands of years of history breathing. Visit the most important ancient monuments and taste the Italian delicacies offered by Rome with us.

Rome, the capital of Italy, is located approximately in the middle of the Apennine peninsula, closer to the west coast. Thanks to this strategic position, it was able to become an important place in European history. One of the oldest European cities was built about 2,700 years ago and used to be the capital of the Roman Empire, the largest empire in the history of Europe. Even more than a thousand years after the fall of the Empire, it is still possible to see the ancient Rome through the preserved monuments. For history lovers, this is the best place they can visit in Europe. It is not in vain that all roads lead to Rome.

Rome offers a unique return to history

Which sights you shouldn´t miss when in Rome

Rome offers a truly amazing walk through a unique history to its visitors. A temple, church, or another interesting sight can be explored at every turn. You will definitely need about 3-4 days to visit all important sights. Some places are quite far away from each other, so it’s a good idea to plan the tour carefully. Public transport works great, so don´t worry about having a problem getting somewhere. Rome is a hearty matter, and although you will stumble over crowds of tourists everywhere, you will fall in love with it.

Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (3)Prior to your stay in Rome, consider purchasing the .This prepaid card will allow you free entry to your chosen sights and saves you a lot of time, as you don´t have to wait in lines!

Colosseum – the largest antique amphitheatre in the world

The Colosseum is the symbol of Rome itself and belongs within the most visited monuments in the world. It is the largest amphitheatre ever built in the Roman Empire. Originally served for public entertainment such as gladiator games, various theatre dramas, and public executions. Over the time, the Colosseum function changed to become a ruin. Currently, the monument is surrounded by tourists every day and remains the centre of interest. In addition to visiting the interior of the Colosseum, there is also an interesting museum dedicated to the Roman god of love Eros.

The Colosseum became the cognitive mark of Rome

Pantheon – a unique temple with a circular hole

Pantheon is one of Rome’s most visited and most ancient temples. It is characteristic with its circular ceiling dome, which has a hole in its centre – an oculus, with a diameter of 9 meters. Thanks to this opening, the natural sunlight penetrates into the temple, and at different times of the day, it is projected onto the walls of the temple. The Pantheon floor is slightly drawn up towards the centre so the rainwater can drain to the sides where the temple channels are drawn out. Until today, it is not entirely clear what was the function of the Oculus. According to some theories, it could be the eye watching the heavens, or the astronomical instrument that predicted the coming solstice. Pantheon currently shelters the tombs of prominent Italian kings and painters and is a very popular stop for many tourists.

From the front, Pantheon looks quite ordinary, but once you get inside …

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Castel Sant’Angelo – Hadrian´s Mausoleum

It is a large castle towering above the river which was meant to serve as the mausoleum of the Roman emperor Hadrian. He was one of the most important rulers in European history, leaving his footprint not even in the British Isles. The best part of the castle is the Angel Bridge, which offers beautiful views of the river and the castle. It earned its name according to the statue of an angel at the top of the building. It was the angel that was to appear to Pope Gregory the Great to tell him the end of the plague epidemic. If you are in the area of the Castel Sant’Angelo, do not miss the Piazza Navona either. In addition to some landmarks dating back to the period of the Republic, you will also find a magnificent fountain in the centre of the square. Among other things, there are remains of the Roman Forum and other important buildings of antiquity.

Roman Forum – An important archaeological site

Roman Forum is a short walk from the Colosseum itself. This is an important archaeological site that evokes the glory of the Roman Empire. On the site of the current Roman Forum was a square that was surrounded by important buildings. Various celebrations, parades, elections, courts, and various public gatherings took place here. After the Empire fell, the Roman Forum ceased to be used and individual buildings were dismantled on material that was re-used to build modern houses. Where stately temples once stood, there was a meadow with grazing goats. It was not until the beginning of the 18th century that the first excavations took place, which returned the lost glory and glamour to this place.

Archaeological excavations give an idea how old Rome could look like

Spanish Steps – a popular meeting place for tourists and locals

The Spanish Steps link an important square and the church of Santa Trinità dei Monti. It is one of the most famous staircases in the world. Prior to their construction, there was an overgrown slope that separated the church from the square itself. That is why it was necessary to unify the place and this staircase was built here in the 17th century. Today it is a very popular place for both tourists and locals. They meet here in beautiful weather, sit and chat. We definitely recommend stopping here for a moment and enjoying the atmosphere that this place offers.

Spanish Steps are a favorite meeting place

The Trevi Fountain – a baroque jewel full of superstitions

The fountain dates back to the 18th century and was built on a place where an aqueduct once stood. It connected three waterways and supplied water all over Rome. The fountain is dominated by the statue of god Neptune standing on the mule, who was the Roman god of all seas. The monument is interesting mainly by the superstitions. The most famous one says that every visitor should throw two coins into the fountain. First to fulfil his wishes and the other to come back to Rome again. Tourists thus throw there approximately 3,000 euros a day. This is a huge sum that the city subsequently uses for charity purposes or the preservation of monuments.

(Video) Top 3 Historical Monuments - Rome - Lonely Planet travel videos

The Trevi Fountain is really beautiful

Vatican – the smallest country in the world

Every visitor who visits the city of Rome should not omit the country of Vatican. It is located in the very centre of the ancient world and is the smallest country in the world. Definitely reserve the whole day for the most important site of the Catholic faith, there is really a lot to see. It is worth mentioning the Saint Peter´s Square, dominated by the Basilica of St. Peter, the most important sanctuary of the Catholic Church. Walk through the Vatican Gardens and visit the Vatican Museums Complex, which includes collections of art and antiques from around the world. Another part of the complex is the Apostolic Palace, which was decorated by the greatest artists of the Renaissance. The most famous sight is the Sistine Chapel, the ceiling of which was painted by the renowned artist Michelangelo.

View from St. Peter’s Basilica across Vatican Square

Don’t forget to taste Italian cuisine

In addition to interesting culture and monuments, Rome also offers unique gastronomy. It would be a sin to miss a visit to local restaurants and not to get a taste of the local cuisine. The most famous dishes include fish, seafood, pasta, risotto and also pizza that has made this cuisine famous throughout the world. There is no problem finding the real Italian pizzeria in Rome. We can recommend a visit to Pizza E Mozzarella, či Casa Manco.

Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (11)In the city centre and around the sights, avoid eating outside the restaurants or cafés. If you prefer your own snack, which you´d like to eat on the church stairs, it can cost you up to 500 euros in Rome.

Pizza is the most popular Italian food in the world

After a delicious meal, be sure to get a sweet dessert, such as tiramisu. The world-famous dessert comes from Tuscany and is the perfect choice to go with afternoon Italian coffee. This country is also renowned for making quality ice creams that will make your day a pleasant one. If you head out for dinner, don´t forget to try out the real Italian wine of Sangiovese and get a taste of some Italian cheeses. In short, visiting Rome will be an enriching experience for you all the way, as well as the taste.

What monuments did you enjoy in Rome? Let us know in the comments or check out this ultimate Rome bucket list.

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Eva2020-04-24T21:33:37+01:00

About the Author: Eva

Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (15)

Eva Novakova is the co-author of the blog ET Abroad. It provides mainly the production of articles she takes care of marketing and manages social media. She likes to encounters with new people and learning about different cultures and their customs. On the road, she enjoys photography and is not afraid of tasting exotic meals.

16 Comments

  1. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (16)

    Steven on aFabulousTrip 13/07/2018 at 1:33 PM - Reply

    Your pictures make me want to go there so badly. I just love the Pantheon so much and the Trevi Fountain is so amazing! I can’t wait to visit the city one day 🙂

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (17)

      Eva 18/07/2018 at 11:47 AM - Reply

      Thank you Steven for very nice comment, the Rome is very beautiful place, I hope you will see it one day 🙂

  2. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (18)

    California Globetrotter 20/07/2018 at 9:58 PM - Reply

    Would love to go back to Rome and show my husband! I’ve been twice before so it’s definitely a fav! I’d agree that you could easily spend 3-4 days there easily! Thanks for linking up with #TheWeeklyPostcard!

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (19)

      Tom 20/07/2018 at 11:08 PM - Reply

      We were in Rome twice and love to come back too 🙂 Anyway I would love to a trip around Italy and visit more…

  3. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (20)

    Katherine 21/07/2018 at 12:44 AM - Reply

    I’ve been to Rome once and would go back in a heartbeat. Although I did just love Italy as a whole, so maybe I should try somewhere new in Italy instead. There’s just so much to see and do. We didn’t even get time to go into the Colluseum, but it’s so spectacular from the outside. #TheWeeklyPostcard

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (21)

      Eva 22/07/2018 at 11:43 PM - Reply

      Hi Katherine, Italy is very beautiful counry, each visit is very nice. If you havent visit Colloseum inside I think you didnt miss anything..

  4. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (22)

    sara 21/07/2018 at 2:59 AM - Reply

    Wow, your photos of Rome are extraordinary!! Beautiful captures!! I love hanging out near the Roman Forum at sunset and watching all the lights come on. Absolutely beautiful moment in Rome. I love the colosseum, too. It’s hard to imagine how incredible it was when it was complete and covered with colors, but I think it’s beautiful just as it is, too! #TheWeeklyPostcard

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    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (23)

      Eva 22/07/2018 at 11:49 PM - Reply

      Hi Sara, thank you for your comment , I am glad you like it. Forum Romanum is very beautiful and exraordinary. As you said, I am curious how would looks the Rome on the beginning of the Rome Empire.

  5. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (24)

    Anisa 21/07/2018 at 8:25 AM - Reply

    I just love Rome, there is so much to see and the food and wine is amazing. This is a great list and I love your photos. Thanks for sharing on #TheWeeklyPostcard.

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (25)

      Eva 23/07/2018 at 12:08 AM - Reply

      Hi Anisa, thank you for nice comment, we love Rome as well, it is very beauiful city full of great monuments, great food and wine.

  6. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (26)

    Anda 22/07/2018 at 10:34 PM - Reply

    This is a very useful guide, especially for those who don’t know what a wealth of ancient monuments Rome has. You could never get bored in Rome, no matter how many times you go there. You made me miss it! #TheWeeklyPostcard

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (27)

      Eva 23/07/2018 at 12:10 AM - Reply

      Hi Anda, I totally agree with you. I can travel to Rome every year and I will be never bored. This is just basic list of the most amazing monuments in Rome but I can visit this places over and over.

  7. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (28)

    Laura 27/07/2018 at 1:42 AM - Reply

    Your pictures are terrific. I love the Trevi Fountain it looks amazing! I can’t wait to visit one day. #theweeklypostcard

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (29)

      Eva 30/07/2018 at 10:41 AM - Reply

      Hi Laura, thanks for nice comment, we are happy you like thep ictures 🙂 I believe one day when you will visit the Rome you enjoy it ! 🙂

  8. Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (30)

    Rob+Ann @TravelLatte(.net) 28/07/2018 at 12:56 AM - Reply

    Ciao guys! First, what great photos! You’ve definitely picked out some of our favorite places in Rome, and have us wanting to go back right now. The last time we were there, the Trevi Fountain was closed for renovations, so we sort of feel cheated. We’re anxious to see it flowing next time. Thanks for sharing on #TheWeeklyPostcard.

    • Rome travel guide to the best ancient monuments (31)

      Eva 30/07/2018 at 12:22 PM - Reply

      Hi Rob and Ann, thank you for your comments! We are happy you like the pictures 🙂 Yeaah, actuaaly everywhere we go, there is something under the renovation, or whatewher happened, so I think this is normal. At least you are motivaed to come back to this place again. Wish you for your next trip to see what did you miss before 🙂

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