Top 19 Things To Do In Rome This 2016

Planning a trip to the eternal city of Italy? Boasting of historical legacies, haunting sights, architectural marvels and artistic riches, here’s a list of the top 19 things you should do while in Rome. Afterall, when in Rome, do as the Romans do!

1. Explore Vatican Museums:

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A beautiful sight to behold, take a guided tour of the world renowned Vatican Museums. The Museums contain stunning masterpieces of sculptures, paintings, tapestries, frescos and other works of art collected through the ages by the various popes. Divided into various sections, Pinacoteca, Miniature Mosaics, Raphael’s Room, Sistine Chapel, Gregorian Egyptian Museum and Belvedere Palace are the ones you should definitely visit.

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2. Bask In The Tuscan Sun:

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Take a break from the hustle bustle of Rome and go on a Tuscan holiday. Located in central Italy, Tuscany region will win you over with its gorgeous landscapes and quaint diners run by friendly farmers.  While there, do visit the famous Val D’Orcia region as well as the historic hill towns of Montepulciano and Pienza, the charming medieval town of San Gimignano and the serene vineyards of Montalcino.

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3. Rome In A Day:

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Only for a short duration in Rome? Then you should cover the major attractions- the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, the intriguing ruins of the Roman Forum and the historical Palatine Hill.

The intimidating and stunning Colosseum was built in 70 A.D. and back then, was the site for sporting events and celebrations. The magnificent Trevi Fountain is to be seen to be believed! Designed by Italian architect Nicola Salvi, it is the largest Baroque fountain in the city.

4. Hang Out In Emperor Caesar Augustus’ Home:

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Caesar Augustus became the first emperor of the Roman Empire after his uncle Julius Caesar died. Under his rule, the Roman Empire became stable and flourished peacefully. Recently opened to visitors, tour the abode of this brilliant Emperor and his wife, Empress Livia. Within the palatial home you will find beautiful 2000 year-old frescoes and mosaics. 

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5. Crypts and Catacombs Of Rome:

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Explore the mysterious crypts and catacombs of Rome. Go down to the burial chambers where long winding passages unfold millennia of history. While on it, do check out the mesmerizing Capuchin Crypt and Museum and the historical Basilica San Clemente. This basilica has a beautiful interior. But it is known more for its three historical layers- the 12th century basilica was built on top of a well-preserved 4th century church. Much of what Rome has to offer is buried underground. Don’t you want to discover the underside of the city?

6. Be Intrigued By The Sistine Chapel:

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The stunning and enchanting Sistine Chapel is in the Vatican City, located within the Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the Pope. The artist behind the beautiful frescos and murals is none other than Michelangelo. He began to work on the paintings for Pope Julius II in the year 1508. You will find Michelangelo’s famous art creations- the Creation of Adam and the Last Judgment here. While in Rome, do make it a point to visit this marvellous structure. 

7. Pompeii Excursion:

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The ash preserved ruins of Pompeii are a must visit while on a trip to Italy. In the year 79 A.D., Mount Vesuvius, a volcano near the Bay of Naples in Italy, erupted and buried this ancient Roman city under a thick carpet of volcanic ash. In the year 1748, a group of explorers discovered this site and were surprised to find that the town was more or less intact. While in Rome, go on a one day excursion to the excavated ruins of Pompeii and also see the still-active Mt. Vesuvius volcano that brought this bustling Roman town to its terrible end.

8. Papal Audience:

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Meet Pope Francis at the Vatican City- a truly humbling and divine experience. Held every Wednesday (depending on whether the Pope is in Rome), Papal Audience gives pilgrims and visitors a chance to see and meet the Pope and receive blessings.  The Audience with the Pope also includes small teachings and readings done mainly in Italian. But depending on the visiting groups, English, German, Spanish, Polish, French and other languages are also used.  

9. St. Peter’s Basilica Exploration:

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Located within the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church- Vatican City, the Papal Basilica of St. Peter or simply St. Peter's Basilica is an Italian Renaissance church. The largest church in the world, it has a 211.5 meter long nave along with the world’s largest dome measuring 42 meters in diameter. Did you know that the magnificent structure was built over a span of 100 years by the greatest Italian architects of the era?

10. Orvieto Escapades:

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The hill town of Orvieto is one of the most striking and tranquil towns in central Italy. Located less than 90 minutes from Rome, the town sits majestically atop a huge volcanic rock, high above the valley and plains of Umbria. While in the town, it is hard to miss the imposing Orvieto Cathedral which probably has the liveliest facade in Italy! A visit to this rustic town is incomplete without sipping on its famous wine.

11. Travel Around Tivoli:

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Situated on the Aniene River in the Monti Tiburtini hills, the ancient Italian town of Tivoli is located around 30 kilometres from Rome. Full of summer retreats of the rich and the famous, the main attractions within the town are the palaces Villa d'Este and Villa Hadrian. If you are an architecture buff, a visit to the Temple of the Sibyl will leave you impressed. While in Rome, do plan a day tour to this picturesque town.  

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12. Explore The Ruins Of Ostia Antica:

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Located in the meadows by the Tiber River, Ostia was the harbour city of ancient Rome. Extremely well planned back then, visitors get to know more about this archaeological site on guided tours. Sprawling over 10,000 acres, the ruins of the city are very well preserved and you will also get to see fascinating mosaics and impressive frescos.

13. See The 7 Wonders Of Ancient Rome:

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Did you know that Rome has 7 ancient wonders?! The list consists of marvellous structures such as the Aqueducts of Rome, the Via Appia (Roman Roads), the Bathouses Of Caracalla, the Circus Maximus, the Colosseum, the Trajan’s Forum and the Pantheon. Do explore these on a guided tour so that you’ll get to know more about the history of and stories related to these mesmerizing ancient wonders.     

14. Explore Ancient Rome:

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Ever wondered how Rome must have looked 2000 years ago? From the crumbling ruins to the architectural remains- rediscover this ancient city’s centre. The Capitoline Hill for example would be a delightful place to visit. Of Rome's seven hills, the Campidoglio (Capitoline Hill) is the most sacred. The hill is where the city's first and holiest temples stood back in the day.  

15. Be Awe-Inspired By The Magnificent Churches Of Rome:

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Roman churches are magnificent to say the least, and many of them contain awe inspiring arts by artists like Michelangelo, Bernini and Borromini. If you are an art buff, you should explore churches such as Santa Maria Maggiore, Basilica Di San Giovanni In Laterano and Basilica Santa Maria Degli Angeli E Dei Martiri.

16. Off The Beaten Path Attractions:

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Have you already covered the famous attractions and monuments in Rome? It’s time to get off the beaten path and explore attractions such as the Rose Garden, Piazza Cavalieri Di Malta (keyhole), Isola Tiberina, Campidoglio, Orange Garden , S. Maria In Cosmedin (mouth Of Truth), Teatro Marcello and Piazza Venezia. Trivia about the Piazza Cavalieri Di Malta: this ornate square is famous for its keyhole set in the main door. If you peep through it, you’ll see the dome of St Peter’s Basilica. Visit this and some other extraordinary places on your trip to Rome.

17. Explore the Jewish Ghetto On Foot:

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One of the most popular attractions in Rome, the Jewish Ghetto is one of the most ancient neighbourhoods in the city. The Jews first came to Rome in 160 B.C to ask for protection from the Romans against the Syrian King Antiochus. This small group then settled down in the city and created the first Jewish community. Years later, when Titus destroyed the Temple of Jerusalem, he took many Jews as slaves with him to Rome. The Jews already living in Rome then paid a ransom to free their brothers and thus the Jewish community increased in size. Take in the history and culture as you explore the area on foot.

18. Segway All The Way!

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The entire city of Rome is like an open museum. How about you explore it on a Segway? Definitely a fantastic way to check out the major attractions of the city.

19. Rome For Families:

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Are you in town with your kids? How about you take them to places that will fascinate them as well? Like visiting a place where you can make pasta with them or maybe go ice cream tasting with them to the oldest ice cream parlour in Rome. You can even have a memorable picnic in the green heart of Rome. Sounds like the perfect way to explore Rome with your family.

All set to explore Rome like a boss?! Happy travelling to you.


Traveler, writer, reader, bathroom singer, trekker, dreamer, a superhero in the making! Trying to be a good Samaritan because we need more of those. Afraid of roller coasters and flying insects! Living life, one mistake at a time.