In this blog I want to share some ROME HIGHLIGHTS! I previously shared my first impressions of Rome. Now I will share EVERYTHING Bou and I went to see while in the beautiful city of Rome. Since we spent over a week in Rome, grab drinks and food, because this is going to be a very long post! Sit back and relax while I take you to the Colosseum, the Trevi fountain and Trastevere. But also to the beautiful orange tree garden, the Botanical garden and their butterfly sanctuary and so much more! Parliamo di tutte le attività che abbiamo fatto a Roma! – Let’s talk all about the activities we’ve done in Rome!
I have seen so many (beautiful) things in Rome and some things I have seen multiple times (obviously). Therefore, I definitely wanted to do a Rome highlights where I put all the must-see spots together. In short, I will just talk about a LOT of different things that you should definitely see while in Rome. I will link as much to my vlogs, so you can actually see it for yourself! Now is a great time to grab that food and get that drink. Don’t forget to sit back and relax, this list is long, but oh so great.
The first think on my Rome highlights list is Piazza Vittorio. I already mentioned that it is near to my childhood home and at a walking distance of the Termini station. Other than that, you can also get off at Pizza Vittorio Emanuele II by tram, bus or metro. Piazza Vittorio is not only a square, but kind of a city park and actually the biggest one in Italy! It even has a fountain called Trophy of Marius. The square is called after Vittorio Emanuele or Victor Emmanuel II. He was the first King of a united Italy from 1849 until 1861. Which seems important as you will find this name almost everywhere in Rome. Piazza Vittorio is often overlooked in my opinion, but definitely a great addition to my personal Rome highlights!
Next, we have the beautiful and grandiose Colosseum! I don’t think the list would be complete without mentioning this beautiful part of history and Italy! For one, the Colosseum is very popular among tourists. Secondly, it is located in the middle of Rome and you cannot miss it! Literally. A long, very long time ago, the Colosseum hosted different events such as gladiator and animal fights. Not only that, but later it became a training centre for gladiators. Today, the Colosseum is a very popular spot for tourists. However, with the coronavirus, it is not that simple anymore. If you want to enter the Colosseum, buy your tickets online, because the ticket office is closed. Unfortunately, Bou and I didn’t manage to get in, but we didn’t mind at all. I for example, walked by the Colosseum many times, and that was more than enough!
Next on the list is the Forum Romanum, better known as the Roman Forum. In a couple of vlogs I walked a specific route from the Colosseum to the Trevi Fountain. In between, I would always pass by the Roman Forum and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. If you buy a ticket for the Colosseum, you also get access to the Roman Forum. However, when you walk past the Colosseum towards the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, you can see the Roman Forum. Which I definitely did on multiple occations. I think it is very interesting if you are into archaeology and history. What is crazy is that the Roman Forum used to be the center of day-to-day life in ancient Rome.
Tomb of the unknown soldier
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is definitely on my Rome highlights. Not only because it is a big monument, but you can actually climb it! All you need is proof of no corona (QR-code) and when you are ready to brace the steps, you go! Bou and I did this and the view from up top is very beautiful. Especially the big roundabout where you can get a good look at the traffic, is terrific! So, what is the story of the unknown soldier? After the first World War in 1921 a body was chosen to be buried at this monument. Actually, a mother of a son whose body was never recovered at war chose a body among 11 death bodies. The tomb is always guarded by soldiers and if you watch my vlog, you can see them. Also, the equestrian statue, is of Vittorio Emanuele!
The most beautiful fountain of Italy and maybe even Europe has to be mentioned! Fontana di Trevi, better known as the Trevi Fountain is located in the district with the same name. The name Trevi comes from the Latin word Trivium, an intersection of three streets. Yes, you guessed it right, the fountain is located where three streets meet. If you want to throw money into the fountain, use your right hand and throw it over your left shoulder. The money in the fountain is used to subsidize a supermarket for those in need. So, yeah it is charity! Also, it is illegal to steal money from the fountain. Beware, each time I went to the Trevi Fountain, there were so many people! I don’t think there is a time the Trevi fountain isn’t crowded, so get used to the amount of people.
Another piazza you should definitely visit is Piazza Navona. This square is very pretty, you could come here to sit on the terrace for some drinks and pizza. Or you can just enjoy the square and explore. Another cool aspect of Piazza Navona is that it has fountains! Not one, but it has three fountains! They may not be as impressive and popular as the Trevi fountain, but they are beautiful! You can actually use it as a central point to any of the other highlights I mentioned. Like walking to the Saint Agnes church, visit the Roman Museum or walk to Trastevere. Also, if you visit Rome at the end of the year, they have a Christmas market at Piazza Navona!
Roman Museum or Museo di Roma
The first museum I went to was the Roman Museum. I walked from Piazza Navona and it was very easy to find. Of course, I had to show proof of no corona with my personal QR-code and entrance was €9,-. Like most museums, there was only one direction you could go in. The museum was interesting, I learned mostly about how Rome looked like before and about the different districts etc. I also learned about a lot of the highlights I talk about in this blog. Like, I got to see the model of the Trevi Fountain when it was built from 1733-1735. Not only that, but I also learned about its remodeling, but I also consumed a lot of art! Roman art, statues, paintings and there was a photography exhibit with pictures of vintage Rome! very impressive as I was exploring the city in modern day.
Giardino degli Aranci or the Orange tree garden
The Orange tree garden was recommended by our housemates. Not only that, but they mentioned a peephole that held a surprise for us before entering the garden. So, the adventurers that Bou and I are, we went there! Unfortunately, it is hard to capture what you actually see through the peephole, but I explain it in this vlog! The garden itself was very pretty as you could see olive trees as well. What was prettier than the garden, was the amazing view from the Aventine Hill! Can you see the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier on the picture? Because I can! Isn’t it amazing? Everytime I had an amazing view, I was looking for the Colosseum, actually, but unfortunately, I haven’t found it yet.
Piazza di Spagna and the Spanish steps
In between exploring Rome, one day, Bou and I found ourselves at the Spanish square. Apparently, it is one of the most popular piazza’s of Rome. In Addition, there are also the Spanish steps. Yes, it’s 135 steps up, so you can do it. At the top, you have an amazing view, so you will not regret it. On top there is also the Trinità dei Monti, a church. I think that you may even have a better view from the church! If you don’t want to climb the steps or visit the church, there are a lot of haute couture brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, Chanel and Valentino where you can shop!
I actually walked to Trastevere a couple of times and I loved walking along the Tiber River to Trastevere. Did you know that Trastevere derives from trans Tiberim, which literally means beyond the Tiber? Which is funny, because Trastevere and Piazza Navona for example are seperated by the Tiber river. It is a beautiful walk along the Tiber River from the city center towards Trastevere. What is remarkable about Trastevere are its narrow, but unique alleyways and ancient houses. The first time I went, I visited yet another fountain. It was the Fontana dell’Acqua Paola and once there you have an amazing view of the city. If you have the chance to actually go to Trastevere, go!
The Botanical Garden or Orto Botanico di Roma
While I was on my way to Fontana dell’Acqua Paola, someone actually recommended the Botanical Garden to me. So, one day I went back to Trastevere and visited the Botanical Garden, boy did I NOT regret that! The garden is amazing. There were so many plants and trees and I learned so much. I think it makes a big difference that Rome is such a different climate than the Netherlands. Therefore, the trees and flowers that grow there are so much different than back home. I, again, watched my eyes out! The entrance to the Botanical garden was €4,-, but I think they assumed I was a student. The Botanical Garden includes: a valley of ferns, a Japanese garden, bamboo groves and so much more!
Butterfly Eden, casa delle farfalle
Before going to the Botanical Garden, I did some research. I found out about Butterfly Eden. However, I wasn’t able to find it, so I asked someone and they led me right to it. I did not regret that either. The Casa delle Farfalle project is actually a research project as well as an educational project. With this project they want to share the journey of different butterflies around the world. There is no entrance fee, but they do ask for a small donation which you decide the amount of. I was in such an awe of Butterfly Eden, because I had never seen anything like it. I still can look at the pictures and video’s of the beautiful butterflies and just smile.
The Vatican City & Museum
One of our last activities was going to the Vatican City. While we were there we visited the Vatican Museum as well. The ticketoffice was closed and the only way to get tickets was online or a local tourist shop. We had the chance of getting access to the Museum as well as the Vatican Garden for about €35- each. Unfortunately, we didn’t have the time for the garden, but we did see the museum and the Sistine Chapel! Yes, it was very impressive to see the influence of Egypt in Rome actually.
For starters, I think that the Vatican Museum has a lot of Egyptian art and artifacts that belong in Egypt. You can see this in my vlog actually. The art from Italian artists were amazing to look at. Honestly, if you have two days to take in everything, do it. Some rooms have so much art that it is overwhelming. It will be on the walls, the ceiling AND the floor. You won’t even know where to look at!
The Pantheon is located at Piazza della Rotonda and is actually an ancient Roman temple. Inside, you have the Catholic Church Basilica of St. Mary. When I entered, there was a space for religious people to pray and sit. Also, it is another very important place for Italians or Romans because Vittorio Emmanuele (Victor Emanuel) is buried here. Remember, the first king of a United Italy I keep talking about? If you want to visit the Pantheon, go during the week. If you visit during the weekends, you’ll have to reserve a timeslot. Otherwise, you don’t, just proof of no corona! But beware, there are many people who want to enter too.
As you can see, I have definitely been out and about while I was in Rome. No doubt about that. I am sure I am forgetting some things, but the essentials are definitely included in the Rome highlights. What I wanted to add is that it’s best if you explore Rome by foot. The first day of exploring, I just opened maps and checked how far the Colosseum was. From there I looked at what was closeby and walked there. In between, I just soaked up the city, took video’s and pictures to share with you.
If you ever find yourself in Rome, definitely go see as many of the Rome highlights I mentioned. Have you ever been to any of the places and spots I have mentioned? Yes, No? Let a girl know in the comments. Definitely enjoy all the vlogs, pictures in the gallery! If you have any Rome-related questions, let me know too!