Italy's Eternal City flaunts ancient ruins and fountain-studded piazzas
Italy’s capital is brimming with history – around practically every corner you’ll find a centuries-old church, a baroque fountain or a relic from Ancient Rome. The historic heart of the city (the centro storico) is simple to navigate on foot, so you can easily wander from the Pantheon to the Piazza Navona, or the Spanish Steps to the Santa Maria del Popolo Church.
Across the snaking Tiber River you’ve got Vatican City (home to the cavernous St. Peter’s Basilica, treasure-trove museums and the frescoed Sistine Chapel), plus the artsy neighbourhood of Trastevere, where cobbled lanes are lined with candlelit trattorias, ivy-draped townhouses and standing-room-only wine bars.
Pretty city parks like the Villa Borghese and Parco Savello are spot on for afternoons of relaxation – the former boasts a boating lake, sun-dappled lawns and a sculpture-filled museum, while the latter features a tree-studded terrace with standout views across the city.
Flights to Rome take around 2 hours 30 minutes.
Transfer time from Fiumicino airport to Rome is approximately 45 minutes.
Spring and autumn are the most comfortable times to visit Rome, but they can be crowded. Temperatures are usually in the low 20s – perfect for strolling and sightseeing. Summer is often sweltering (temperatures regularly creep up to 30 degrees), but is ideal for sunbathing in the city’s parks and dining al fresco in its fountain-studded piazzas. Winter is cooler and wetter, but much less busy.
British citizens do not currently require a visa to visit Italy.
When you dine out in Italy, you will generally be charged a coperto (cover charge), which is for the bread, tablecloth, cutlery, etc. Tipping in Italy is not customary, but is always appreciated.
The official language of Italy is Italian. English is widely spoken too, so getting by is easy.