Ah, the eternal city of Rome, where history seamlessly blends with modernity, and every cobblestone tells a tale of ancient glory. As a passionate traveler and avid explorer, I’ve embarked on countless journeys, but none quite as enchanting as the timeless streets of Rome.
Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned wanderer returning to soak in the city’s allure, navigating Rome’s treasures requires a certain finesse. Fear not, fellow adventurers, for I’ve gathered a trove of expert tips that will make your life easier while visiting this city.
Do Not Go During Peak Season
This may seem like a “duh” thing to say, but it will keep you from losing your mind and not being able to enjoy the best Rome has to offer. So, don’t go during the months of June to August, the worst time being July. It’s HOT, like the surface of the sun hot.
Also, there are some hotels that still don’t have air conditioning; I promise you will need it if you travel here in the summer. Instead, consider visiting in March and April when the flowers are beginning to bloom and the weather is much nicer.
Another good time to go would be September and October when you can find some pretty fall foliage in and around the city, and the weather is cooler with fewer crowds.
Book Your Hotel in Advance
Book your accommodations well in advance of your trip. Rome is a large city and one of the busiest in the world, which means hotel rooms go quickly.
Watch Out for Pickpockets
Rome is no different than any other giant metropolis; those people are looking to score some tourism money without work.
The best tip to avoid becoming a victim of this is to keep your purse/bag at the front of your body. Do not use backpacks or anything that will be out of your line of sight. Don’t lay your bag down; always keep an arm or leg through the strap.
Download Necessary Apps
Download necessary apps such as Google Translate and make sure you install the Italian language for offline use.
The Fork is great for making restaurant reservations.
I love the Wanderlog app and have used it for complex travel worldwide. I load my points of interest, restaurants, bars, hotels, and anything else into the app, and it appears on the map. It has been invaluable and even keeps track of your reservations and tickets.
Comfortable Footwear is Key
Rome is a city best explored on foot, with its cobblestone streets and numerous attractions. Wear comfortable shoes to navigate the city’s historic sites and neighborhoods.
I have compiled a few of my favorites that go with any outfit!
Rome has an extensive public transportation system, including buses and the metro.
You can just familiarize yourself with the routes to save time and energy, especially when traveling to distant attractions.
The one-way ticket, BIT, lasts 75 minutes once you validate it and allows you unlimited transfers that can be used for the metro, buses, trams, and trains.
You can also choose a 24, 48, or 72-hour ticket, which is helpful for your short-term visit.
If you are staying a week, you may want to consider the 7-day ticket that provides unlimited public transport for 7 days at a cost of €24.
Learn Basic Italian Phrases
Whenever I travel, I try to learn at least a few phrases in the native language, things like “thank you,” “hello,” and “and please,” and learning numbers 1-10 is helpful as well.
While most Romans speak English, learning a few basic Italian phrases can enhance your experience and show respect for the local culture.
Coffee and Aperitivo Breaks
Rome is renowned for its delicious food. Take breaks to savor authentic Italian cuisine in local trattorias and enjoy the relaxed dining pace.
It is not uncommon for locals to take some time in the afternoon for a coffee or an Aperol spritz.
When in Rome…
Get Outside the Tourist Area
Venture beyond the main tourist spots to discover authentic Roman neighborhoods. This is one of my favorite things to do when visiting any city. You never know what might be around the next corner.
Trastevere, for example, offers a charming atmosphere with narrow streets and local eateries.
Never pass a church without entering it; you will be surprised by what you might find in these buildings. Just be respectful of mass services and those who are praying during your visit.
I hope these expert tips for visiting Rome assist you in enjoying what this beautiful city has to offer. Safe travels, fellow adventurers, and may your memories of Rome be as enduring as the city itself.