When in Rome – or anywhere for that matter – there’s no shame in wandering along the well-beaten tourist track every once in a while – as long as you remember to stick to these two basic rules: wear comfortable shoes and be prepared to deal with crowds. To save yourself some trouble, book in advance wherever possible – you’ll save heaps of time, which can be better spent exploring.
Robyn Alexander shares her four must-see sites in Italy’s capital city.
The spectacular ruins of the largest amphitheatre ever built provide a fascinating window into what life was like in ancient Rome. Book your entry ticket and tour in advance online – there are a number of different options, so it’s worth spending a bit of time picking and choosing.
st peter’s basilica
St Peter’s Basilica, famous for its Renaissance architecture, is one of the largest churches in the world and still functions as a church today (the Pope presides over several liturgies here every year). The beautiful building is situated in the Vatican City and is a place of pilgrimage for Christians from all over the world. Again, it’s a good idea to book tickets and tours online before you go.
the trevi fountain and spanish steps
These two Roman icons, which have featured in countless films and books set in the city, are within walking distance of one another. Be warned: they will always be crowded, no matter when you go.
the vatican museums
Situated in the Vatican City and packed with priceless works of art including the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, which was painted by Michelangelo, and works by Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci and Caravaggio, the Vatican Museums are visited by millions of people every year. Save yourself some hassle and book tickets and tours online before you go.
See our August 2016 issue to discover some of Rome’s hidden gems in the trendy neighbourhood of Monti.