The Home of Renaissance Art and Ancient Ruins: Our Guide to Rome

Published

8 September, 2022

Edited

29 September, 2022

Popular since, well, the Roman times, the ancient city of Rome is shrouded in myth and legend. Built upon layer after layer of history and culture, the city’s ancient cobblestone streets, crumbling ruins and Baroque fountains speak of a rich and textured past. With so much to see and do, it can be tempting to try and pack as much into your visit as possible. However, we’d advise against doing this; instead, pick a few things you want to see and take your time exploring. Rome wasn’t built in a day and you definitely can’t see it all in one (or even 100).

Renaissance art, ancient ruins and exquisite food - when in Rome...

From personalised city tours with an expert guide and pasta-making classes with a local nonna to booking you into the city's best bars and restaurants, we know exactly what it takes to make your getaway incredible. Simply let us know what you'd like to see and do and we can create a tailored itinerary for you. For a bit of inspiration, here are some of our favourite spots in the city. Buon viaggio!

What to see (outside) in Rome

Make the most of a warm, sunny day in Rome by heading outside to take a trip back in time through exploring the city’s famed ancient ruins and sprawling parks.

The Colosseum

Vast and towering, Rome’s magnificent Colosseum dominates the city centre. The largest amphitheatre ever built by the Romans, this colossal structure is just as impressive now as it ever was. Wander around the ancient arena, imagining the cheers of 50,000 Romans, clashes of the gladiators’ swords and roars of lions, tigers and bears which would have once filled the air.

Palatine Hill

The most famous of Rome’s seven hills, Palatine Hill is one of the most ancient parts of the city. According to the legend, the cave where Romulus and Remus were raised by a wolf was located on the hill. Although you may not find the cave, you will find plenty of incredible ruins to explore and, once you make it to the top you’ll be rewarded with spectacular panoramic views of the city. Pack a picnic and spend an afternoon enjoying the lush greenery and relative peace of Palatine Hill.

Villa Doria Pamphili

Located just outside the ancient city walls, Villa Doria Pamphili is Rome’s largest landscaped public park and is a glorious spot to spend a sunny afternoon. Take a wander through the park and discover an array of secret gardens, baroque statues, little chapels and even a series of tiny waterfalls.

What to see (inside) Rome

Although the summers are hot and dry in Rome, the winters tend to be cool and sometimes wet. Luckily, there’s plenty to do indoors too; meaning a trip to the Eternal City should always be on the cards, no matter the season.

Galleria Borghese

Packed to the rafters with works from some of the world’s most celebrated Old Masters, a trip to the Galleria Borghese should be on every art lover’s list. Housed in the Villa Borghese, an elegant mansion nestled in the middle of a park, spend a happy afternoon marvelling at breathtakingly lifelike sculptures by Bernini and Canova, as well as masterpieces by Titian, Rubens and Raphael. If the weather’s looking good, then a stroll through the gorgeous Villa Borghese gardens is a great way to finish the day.

The Pantheon

Originally a Roman temple, the Pantheon is still enjoying its second life as a Catholic church. Although its towering size and majestic architecture are indeed impressive, the truly jaw-dropping aspect of the building is its giant dome. To this day, it is the largest unsupported dome in the entire world - an accolade to the ingenuity of Roman engineering.

Centrale Montemartini

Another incredible spot for art lovers (spoiler alert: Rome is full of them), Centrale Montemartini is well worth spending a day exploring. Housed in a former power plant, you can enjoy the contrast of ancient statues, busts and friezes set against a stark industrial background.

Where to shop

Although more famous for its history and art, Rome is still an excellent city for shopping. From the latest designer labels to sprawling markets selling everything from fresh produce to antiques, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for in this vast, eclectic metropolis.

Monti

If you’re searching for artisanal products, independent designers and quirky boutiques, then the neighbourhood of Monti is the spot for you. Brimming with tiny shops, temporary pop-ups and lots of cute little restaurants, there’s plenty to explore in this often overlooked area.

Via dei Coronari

Those in the market for art and antiques should head to Via dei Coronari for a leisurely browse. The street is lined with quaint little stores, selling everything from statues to shirts and has a distinctly local feel about it.

Via Condotti

For designer labels, Via Condotti, near the grand Piazza di Spagna, is a great choice. Overlooking the famous Spanish Steps, you’ll find outposts from some of the world’s most prestigious fashion houses scattered along this elegant street.

Via del Pellegrino

Filled with pretty little boutiques, art galleries, traditional osteria, lovely old bookshops and cool coffee bars, Via del Pellegrino is well worth a visit. Located just off the famous Campo dei Fiori, spend a happy afternoon browsing books and sipping on coffee on this eclectic, charming street.

Where to eat in Rome

Where better to experience the world-renowned flavours of Italy than the stunning and architecturally mesmerizing city of Rome. As the largest city in Italy, Rome has thousands of amazing restaurants to delight your taste-buds.

Whether you are looking for a light meal in-between roaming through Rome or a three-course meal with wine pairings, Rome is home to a spectacular selection of Michelin featured restaurants; each with their own unique take on delicious Italian classics and Roman flavours.

Pierluigi

Located in the heart of Rome, Pierluigi’s has welcomed many famous names over the years. This exquisite fish restaurant has both indoor and outdoor dining, an extensive wine cellar and a gorgeous American-style cocktail bar for a pre-dinner drink.

Giulietta

Prepare to be charmed by Giulietta’s quirky yet cosy decor and relaxed atmosphere. Described as ‘your living room in the heart of Rome’, spend your evening relaxing on one of their artfully mismatched armchairs and tucking into a menu filled with fresh local flavours and delicious wines.

Per Me

Those seeking cutting edge cuisine will find their quest well rewarded by trail-blazing Chef Giulio Terrinoni and his team at Per Me. Although one of Rome’s most celebrated restaurants, Per Me lacks any of the ostentatiousness or showiness which usually come with such a high accolade. Instead, you’ll find this incredible yet understated restaurant in a somewhat hidden location, stealing diner’s hearts with a combination of impeccable service, excellent seafood dishes and Giulio’s obvious passion for his art.

Where to drink in Rome

Whether you're a cocktail connaisseur or a fan of the classic Italian wine, you can be sure to find the perfect bar within the city of Rome. Head to one of the renowned rooftop bars in the city to enjoy the captivating night view of Rome with paired with a delicious cocktail in hand.

Settimo Roman Cuisine & Terrace

​Sip on creative cocktails and enjoy the magnificent views from Settimo Roman Cuisine & Terrace, on the 7th floor of Sofitel Roma Villa Borghese. With striking modern surrounds and set just on the edge of the beautiful Villa Borghese park, this is a wonderfully stylish spot to spend an evening.

Jerry Thomas Speakeasy

Routinely featuring as one of the world’s best bars, the Jerry Thomas Speakeasy is a hot-bed of cocktail experimentation and late-night Roman culture. The first secret bar in Italy, you’ll need to locate the password hidden on the homepage of their site before you can enter; but the sultry 1920’s style decor and incredible drinks you’ll find inside are more than worth it.

Minerva Roof Garden

Designed by architect, Paolo Portoghesi, Minerva Roof Garden offers breathtaking views over the ancient city of Rome. Located right next to the gargantuan Pantheon, you’ll be able to enjoy history and wine simultaneously - a definite win-win in our books.

The Roof Garden & Bar

The Roof Garden & Bar, on the terrace of the prestigious Raphael Hotel, has to be one of the most gorgeous spots in the entire city. Sip champagne and enjoy panoramic views in this flower-filled hideaway.

The onefinestay experience

At onefinestay, we offer our guests an exclusive and comprehensive range of concierge services. Tailored to your exact requirements, these services can help to make your stay as carefree and memorable as it should be. From private chef services and in-home spa treatments to the arranging of private museum tours, your personal Travel Advisor will guide you through all your available options. We organise everything before your arrival, so all you need to do is simply turn up and enjoy.

Captivated by Rome?

SPEAK TO ONE OF OUR TRAVEL ADVISORS TO BEGIN PLANNING YOUR CITY BREAK TO ROME TODAY. WE’LL FIND THE PERFECT HOME FOR YOU AND CRAFT THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME.