Rome has been the historic capital of Italy since the early 15th century, which makes it one of the world’s oldest cities. It has been continuously inhabited for more than 3,500 years, and it’s one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. With so many places to see, it’s hard to know where to start! Here are some of Rome’s most amazing things you need to know before visiting.
1. The Weather
The weather in Rome is typically warm. In the winter, it’s about 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit, and in the summer, it’s about 70-90 degrees Fahrenheit. The rainiest time of year is from November to March, and the sunniest time is from April to September.
The best month to visit is October because it has a good balance of sunny days and less rain than other months.
2. The Language
Italian is the official language, but you’ll find people who speak English and Spanish in tourist-heavy areas like Termini Station. The native Roman dialect is called Romeo, a mix of medieval Latin and Italian. Much to the annoyance of non-Italian speakers, Romans often use abbreviations for street names, so make sure you know where you’re going before venturing out on your own.
3. The best time to visit
Rome is a top destination for tourists in Italy, but make sure you know when to visit before booking your trip. The best time to visit the city is April through October. These months are great because the weather is sunny and warm, the Romans are not in their summer vacation mode, so they’re less busy, and it’s not as hot as the rest of Europe. Winter can be an excellent time to go if you want to avoid crowds, but it also rains often, and there’s a chance you’ll get snowed in!
4. The currency
Italy’s currency is the Euro, which is used in all countries that are part of the European Union. The Euro is divided into 100 cents, and coins come in 5, 10, 20, and 50-cent denominations as well as 1, 2, and 5 euro denominations. There are also one and 2-euro coins. In Italy, the following credit cards are accepted: MasterCard, Visa, American Express, and Diners Club. Travelers’ cheques can be converted to Euros at most banks. US dollars can be exchanged for Euros at commercial exchange bureaux, which display the sign change.
5. The history
The history of Rome is a mixture of myth, legend, and fact. It is said that the city was founded by Romulus in 753 BC after he killed his twin brother Remus in a quarrel over which one should rule. The city expanded rapidly, but it was sacked in 390 BC by the Gauls led by Brennus.
The legacy of the Romans can be seen throughout Europe and America in their law, government, language, and architecture.
6. The culture
Everything you are used to doing in your daily life will be different in Rome. The cultural norms are very different from what we have in the United States, so it is essential to learn about them before you go. For example, when greeting someone, a handshake would suffice for Americans, but Romans would expect at least a kiss on each cheek. If you need to learn how to do this, make sure you’re learning before you go or brush up on your skills.
7. The nightlife
Rome has a lot of really fantastic nightlife spots. The biggest ones are in the center of the city and include Piazza Navona, Campo de Fiori, and Via del Corso. These areas are always bustling with people and offer an experience that you’ll never forget. If you’re looking for something more out of the ordinary, head to Trastevere for a more local feel or Testaccio if you’re interested in wine tasting.
There’s no shortage of things to do in Rome by day or night, so make sure to come back to this list when you’re planning your trip!
8. The Architecture
The architecture of ancient Rome is stunning and a must-see when you visit the city. One of the most iconic structures in all of Italy, The Colosseum, was built as an amphitheater and completed in 80 AD. It is still standing today despite being damaged by earthquakes, fires, and vandalism. For a more intimate experience, take a walking tour of one of the cobbled streets that make up the old Roman city center, including colonnades and fountains.
9. The safety
Safety is an important consideration when traveling to a new country. Here are some safety tips to help you keep safe in Italy.
- Beware of pickpockets and other petty thieves who prey on tourists in large crowds, transportation hubs, and other tourist areas, such as the Spanish Steps or the Trevi Fountain.
- Watch your belongings at all times and never leave them unattended, particularly in a crowded place or if you’re using public transportation.
- Exercise caution when visiting popular tourist sites such as the Colosseum or the Vatican Museums at night because they are often frequented by thieves looking for unsuspecting tourists carrying expensive equipment like cameras or purses.
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times so that you can avoid robberies after dark
10. The art
The Pantheon is an ancient Roman temple that was dedicated to all the gods of ancient Rome. It was built in 27 BC and completed by Emperor Hadrian in 125 AD. The Pantheon was made into a church, but it still contains many features from its original design, such as the inscription above the entrance that reads Marcus Agrippa Lucii Filius. The Spanish Steps are a monumental set of steps located in the heart of the city on top of a hill near Trinità dei Monti, leading down to the Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Square). There are two museums that are not to be missed when visiting Rome: Museo Nazionale Romano and Galleria Borghese.
11. The cafes
One of the best things about living in Rome is that you are never too far from a cafe. Whether you’re looking for a coffee to start your day or want to end your evening with an espresso, there’s always somewhere nearby. Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your experience at these essential Roman institutions:
- If you need help deciding what to order, try ordering an espresso and then asking for an amaro. It’s the perfect way to sample different flavors and find one that suits your taste buds.
- If you’re new to caffeinated beverages, be warned that caffeine doesn’t affect everyone the same way. Make sure you don’t have anything important planned for later in the day before drinking too much coffee!
12. The mode of transport
Getting around in Rome is very easy as the transport system is excellent. There are taxis, buses, trains, and of course, the metro system, which allows you to use one ticket for all modes of transport. Taxis are plentiful and are an excellent alternative to buses or trains if you want a more direct route. The cost of traveling by taxi varies depending on the time of day but expect to pay between €5-8 per kilometer.
13. What to pack
The best time to visit is May through September, which is when the weather is most pleasant, and the crowds are smaller. Pack layers because it can get chilly in the evenings, but be sure to bring a jacket for those cold mornings.
Be prepared to spend a lot of time walking, so pack comfortable shoes! There are many cobblestone streets throughout the city that can be difficult to walk on if you’re wearing uncomfortable shoes. Bring plenty of cash – credit cards are not widely accepted in Italy, so you’ll want some money for taxis and food from street vendors. And always keep your wallet on you at all times, so don’t forget it or leave it in your hotel room!
14. The music
The music of Rome is both ancient and modern. It ranges from opera to rock and roll. One of the most famous composers from Rome was Ottorino Respighi, who wrote the suite Pines of Rome. This music can be heard in many different parts of the city, but there are a few places in particular where you can listen to this kind of music all day. The Villa Borghese is one location that hosts live concerts throughout the day with musicians from around the world. The Piazza Navona is another place where you can find Respighi’s music being played live in front of various cafes at all hours of the day.
15. The accommodation
Rome is a massive city with many hotels, inns, and hostels to choose from. If you’re looking for a place to stay close to Vatican City or to be near the Colosseum, you must book in advance. Remember that some more excellent hotels may require guests to show their passports before they can check-in. Remember: breakfast is only included at some of these places.
Consider staying with a family instead of booking a hotel room–this will give you a good feel for what it’s like living there!
If you’re planning on renting an apartment or house through Airbnb, be sure that they vet your accommodations first.