Over the Fasching weekend at the end of February, S and I made a trip to Rome, Italy. He had never been before and I only had vague memories from visiting the city in my early twenties. We were looking forward to exploring the city and soaking in all the major sights on our weekend getaway. We really lucked out with the weather and enjoyed blue skies and sun for most of our trip (yes, even in February)! In between guided tours and sightseeing on our own, we managed to fit in the biggest sights during our time in Rome. Here, I’ve put together a summary of the top sights we visited in the city that I can definitely recommend to you.
Sightseeing in Rome
The Pantheon is a former Roman temple, now a church, in Rome. It is the most influential and best-preserved building of ancient Rome and was built between A.D 118 and 125. Tip: To avoid the crowds, head to the Pantheon early in the morning shortly after it opens.
The Trevi Fountain is the largest Baroque fountain in Rome and one of the most famous fountains in the world. The elegant fountain measures 26.30m tall and 49.15m wide and is made of travertine and carrara marble. The fountain was recently restored by Italian fashion company Fendi in 2015 so the fountain is looking better than ever! Legend has it that if you throw a coin over your shoulder into the Trevi Fountain, you’ll return to Rome someday.
The Spanish Steps are a stairway composed of 135 steps dating back to the 18th century. It’s the perfect spot to sit and people watch while enjoying a scoop of gelato either day or night.
The Vatican Museums are located within Vatican City and display the prized collections of Popes through the centuries. Items include renowned classical sculptures and some of the most important masterpieces of Renaissance art in the world. Don’t miss the Sistine Chapel – truly breathtaking! Tip: If possible, try to see the Vatican Museums on a special tour before the museum opens to the public to get privileged (i.e. near empty) access to the Sistine Chapel and the collections. We went on a tour with The Roman Guy and it was far and away the best tour we took in Rome.
St. Peter’s Basilica
Known officially as the Papal Basilica of St. Peter in the Vatican, St. Peter’s Basilica is a must-see when in Rome. Considered as one of the holiest Catholic shrines and largest churches in the world, this enormous church is a sight to behold.
The Roman Forum
The Roman Forum is a rectangular area surrounded by the ruins of numerous important ancient Roman government buildings and was for centuries the centre of public Roman life. Today, the Roman Forum consists of sprawling ruins and archaeological excavations, making it easy for visitors to imagine life in ancient times.
The Colosseum is the world famous oval amphitheatre located in the centre of Rome next to the Roman Forum. It’s the largest amphitheatre ever built and serves as the design inspiration for modern day arenas and stadiums. The Colosseum was the site of gladiatorial competitions and public spectacles, drawing in crowds of up to 80,000 spectators. An absolute must-see when in Rome, the Colosseum is truly spectacular. Tip: Take a guided tour for behind the scenes info and access to the upper levels or dungeons not normally viewable to the general public.
Of course there’s still lots more to see in Rome, including the Borghese Gallery, the Jewish Ghetto, Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore, Santa Maria in Trastevere, the Testaccio neighbourhood, and more. If only we’d had more time to explore!
I’ve included a map below of my recommended sights to help you plan your own sightseeing in Rome.
What are your favourite sights in Rome? Which sights should I make sure to see during my next visit?
P.P.S. I’m reliving my trip to Rome in photos – check out my Roman holiday on Instagram @kaffeeundkuchenblog!