Rome is such a fascinating city filled with history, cultural events, beautiful architecture, and delectable cuisine. Those who choose to visit there will find their days full of adventures and excitement and no one will want to leave when it is time for their spectacular journey to end.
It can be expensive to travel anywhere in the world, but there are many ways that everyone can work within their allotted budget when they travel to Rome.
Casa per Ferie Santa Maria alle Fornaci
This affordable hotel has quite the amazing location, as it is very near the Vatican. In fact, everyone can walk to the Vatican within a minute or two! There are fifty-four rooms inside this hotel and while some are more traditional, others are considered new and have more modern furnishings. Guests will love being two minutes from the San Pietro Station, where they can catch public transportation to almost anywhere in the city. Breakfast is available to all guests at no charge and the Wi-Fi is also free.
Those who want to be practically right next door to some of the more famous attractions within Rome will love staying at the Hotel Mimosa. Guests at this hotel can walk to the Pantheon in under three minutes. This hotel has eleven rooms on the second floor of an ancient Roman building, which gives it a more authentic feel. Guests will love the recently updated rooms and the fact that everyone receives a free buffet breakfast.
Since most savvy budget travelers will stay at a hotel that offers a free breakfast, the restaurants in this section will focus on those that serve lunch and dinner.
Osteria della Suburra
This restaurant can be found close to the Colosseum within the Monti neighborhood. Most travelers avoid that area, as they believe that the prices are going to be higher than they should, but this restaurant will surprise everyone. They offer amazing dishes that include gricia, carbonara, trippa alla romana, and rigatoni alla pajata. The best place to sit is outside, but it does get crowded and smoky out there during the warmer months of the year.
Trattoria dal Cavalier Gino
This is an amazing and cheap place to dine at for lunch, but since it is right behind the Parliament, it does get crowded. Therefore, everyone will either want to grab an early lunch or wait for the crowds to dissipate and eat later, although they will still need a reservation. The bright colors add to the ambiance, as do the charming and sometimes comical waitstaff. Authentic Roman dishes are served at Gino’s including cuttlefish with peas and hare in tomato sauce, but visitors will also find regular dishes like amatriciana and carbonara.
Anyone near the Trevi Fountain will want to stop into Sora Lucia for a bite of local cuisine. While their menu is extensive, most people choose to order the daily specials, which rotate throughout the week. Everything is tasty, so it never really matters what is put in front of a diner, as it disappears immediately! The desserts that they serve are all homemade and past guests have stated that everyone must save room for at least one of them.
Things to Do
Visitors can spend weeks in Rome and still not experience or see everything that they should, but there are a few things that everyone will need and want to see when they are there. Here are the most recommended things to do within the city:
The Colosseum opened back in 80 A.D., so that approximately fifty thousand people could watch the gladiatorial fights or other performances that were held there. This amphitheater is massive with a circumference of five hundred and seventy-three yards. While there is a cost to enter the Colosseum, the price is worthwhile, as the history inside cannot be seen anywhere else in the world. Those who want to avoid standing in lines will want to purchase their tickets in advance.
The Vatican Museums
There are a few museums within Vatican City and visitors will want to enter them, so that they can appreciate all the history that is on exhibit. One museum holds a spiral staircase, while another holds the Raphael Rooms. These museums can take hours to explore, so everyone should plan their day accordingly. Of course, before leaving, people must stop to see the Sistine Chapel, as it was one of Michelangelo’s masterpieces.
The Spanish Steps
These steps are the perfect destination for those who have been roaming around the city and need a little break. Everyone can grab a cup of coffee or a gelato before sitting down on a step to watch the rest of the people that are wandering around nearby. Of course, after visitors are rejuvenated, they will need to venture over to the designer shops that are over on Via dei Condotti. Most people will spend their time window shopping there, but a few may be willing to splurge on a few of the items that they find.
Campo de’ Fiori
This area of Rome is so phenomenal that many people will go there during the day and then again at night. The atmosphere within Campo de’ Fiori is so unique at both times of the day that almost everyone wants to experience the differences for themselves. During the day, visitors can wander through the massive market, as they purchase items from the vendors. At night, the atmosphere turns electric as the bars and clubs turn on their lights and the dancing and music begins. The restaurants can be a little pricey, but visitors can save a little money by purchasing their meal before they arrive for a night on the town.
St. Peter’s Basilica
Visitors can spend as much time in this basilica as they want, and it won’t cost them a dime unless they want to climb to the top of the dome. The price to climb the five hundred and fifty-one steps or take the elevator is reasonable considering the breathtaking views that can be seen from up there.
The Pantheon used to be a Roman temple, but it currently serves as a church. Many people visit this attraction to see the architecture from the time it was constructed, which was 120 A.D. However, others find themselves paying their respects to King Victor Emmanuel II, King Umberto I, and Raphael, as their tombs are all located there.
The Trevi Fountain is one of the most sought-after attractions within Rome, mainly due to the legend that everyone wants to come true. According to the legend, anyone who throws one coin over their left shoulder using their right hand will return to Rome one day in the future. Two coins means that the person will fall in love with a gorgeous Roman and three coins means that that same person will marry that Roman. It is very busy around this fountain, due to everyone throwing in their coins. This fountain is quite extraordinary during the day, but at night it lights up to mesmerize even the most reluctant coin tosser.
Do's and Don'ts
Rome is just like any other city in the world and there are certain things that everyone will want to know before they arrive. Here are the most important do’s and don’ts that every visitor should be aware of:
- Don’t have a picture taken with any of the gladiators unless asking what the charge is first. The gladiators dress as they do to earn money, not do anyone any favors.
- Do dress appropriately as no one knows when they will be near a church or other attraction that requires long skirts, long pants, and long sleeves.
- Do take a business card with the information for the hotel that is being used for accommodations, as it can be a lifesaver at the end of the day if someone is lost or too far from the hotel to walk.
- Do greet people when entering restaurants, attractions, and shops.
- Do take a map while wandering around the city.
- Do take a water bottle to refill while wandering around the streets.
- Don’t schedule tours or plan to take public transportation on May 1st. This is when the city celebrates Labor Day, and everything is closed.
- Don’t point index and pinkie fingers at the same time as it means something vulgar in Rome.
- Do know basic Italian words for carrying on basic conversations with those who do not speak English.
- Do carry passports all the time.
- Do always carry an umbrella as rain showers are common.
- Do keep an eye on belongings as pick pockets are everywhere.
- Don’t use an ATM when the bank is closed, as issues can be resolved immediately only when banks are open.
- Do ride the Metro instead of in a cab to save money.
Money Saving Tips
There are plenty of ways to save money while visiting Rome, but here are the ones that everyone will love the most:
- Purchase a Roma Pass – These passes are normally good for forty-eight or seventy-two hours and they can save people a lot of money. In addition to free entry to a museum or two, free access to public transportation, and a map of Rome, these passes also include eighty discounts for exhibits, events, and other businesses.
- Free Entry at the Vatican Museum – The Vatican Museum offers free entry on the last Sunday of the month, so this is the perfect day for people who are trying to save money to visit. However, everyone must realize that the museum will be packed with people of the same mindset.
- Free Entertainment – All the squares, or piazzas, offer free entertainment all day long, although it is not what most people think of. These squares are the perfect place for visitors to sit and watch everyone else who is rushing by. This is an excellent way for guests to learn more about the lives of the locals and what they do during the day.
- Check Out the Free Attractions – There are plenty of free attractions within Rome and the Pantheon and the Roman Forum are two of the best.
- Take One of the Free Walking Tours – There is an amazing free walking tour that begins at the Piazza di Spagna. Anyone that takes this tour will find themselves wandering past the Angels of Bernini, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain, and Queen Margherita’s Tomb.
- Utilize the Public Water Fountains – Visitors can save a lot of money by taking their own water bottle with them and filling it up at one of the numerous public water fountains that are scattered throughout the city. Some of the water fountains are centuries old, so visitors get a little history lesson as well.
- Listen to Live Music – Live music can be heard at many of the pubs and bars throughout Rome. The nights and times vary, as do the genres, but anyone who loves music of any kind will always find someone performing when they are out on the town.
- Admire the Flowers – The Villa Borghese Gardens are always free, which is perfect for those who want to wander around a massive park in the middle of a city.
- Walk Through History –Sundays are the best days to take a stroll along the Ancient Appian Way, as no cars are allowed on that road then. This old highway was constructed in 312 B.C. and there are numerous sites to see as people are wandering along the way. Visitors will love spending time at the old Domine Quo Vadis Church, ruins of Roman monuments, and two Christian catacombs.
Travelers will love every second that they are in Rome, and they will find that their time will go by very quickly even though they do not want it to. Everyone needs to see all the fantastic sites mentioned above, even the ones that charge a fee. While people may be on a budget, those fees can easily be incorporated into anyone’s vacation, especially if they take advantage of many of the money saving options that are available.