Rome is one of those fascinating cities which has the power to make you feel incredibly tiny and insignificant. You really can believe that this city once sat at the centre of a powerful empire. The buildings and monuments are so much grander and even more impressive than they look in all those history books. You find yourself constantly looking upward because rarely do you find a piece of history in this city at eye level or below!
We stayed in Rome for just 4 days but managed to see everything we wanted to and more. We spent the first day visiting all of the fountains – there are so many and they are all so beautiful. Every time you come to a large crossroads or a clearing in the tunnelled streets there seems to be a carved watery masterpiece to greet you. Our second day was spent at the Colosseum and surrounding ruins, and our third and fourth days at the Vatican City (the extra day because we went to see Pope Francis making his weekly public appearance – pretty cool if you are ever in Rome on a Wednesday go say hi!).
Despite the fact that we went out of season (October) the weather was still lovely and the crowds of tourists were still intense. No matter what time of year you visit Rome, be prepared to battle the crowds if you are wanting to visit the main attractions.
We were on a very tight budget so we didn’t pay for any extras, such as going inside the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican City or inside the Colosseum, but we found that it really didn’t bother us. You can go inside all of the stunning Basilica’s (Churches) for free and you can see quite a lot of the ruins and the inside of the Colosseum just from having a wonder around them.
Our hotel was right near the Termini Station and we found everything was within walking distance. We tried to figure out the bus routes on one of the days but, trust me, it is easier and faster to just walk! Besides, we never would have wondered down the quaint side streets if we had caught the bus everywhere and, despite eating nothing but pizza, pasta and pastries for four days, we still came back having lost weight from all those steps!
Rome is a stunning city with so much to offer – architecture, religion, history, food! If you have the chance, visiting this iconic city is a must. It is the perfect destination for a city break as you really don’t need longer than 3-4 days to soak up the atmosphere of this bustling metropolis.