Uncover Top 10 Places to Visit in Rome for the Best Trip!

Rome is Italy’s capital city, known for its historical and religious monuments worldwide, attracting millions of visitors every year!

From iconic structures like the Colosseum to the religious Vatican City, there are many places to visit in Rome to fulfill your historical fantasies.

Visitors planning to escape on vacation in the City of Rome must know all about the most popular attractions to have a memorable experience.

Whether you are a history buff, art enthusiast, or simply looking for new adventures, this article covering the top 10 attractions in Rome has it all for you! 

1. The Colosseum

Colosseum rome
Image: Colosseum Rome Italy Stock photos by Vecteezy

The Colosseum Rome is one of the most historical attractions in the city, standing tall for almost 2,000 years!

It is a vast Flavian amphitheater that could accommodate around 50,000 visitors at once and was a popular spot for celebrating 100-day festivals.

This elliptical marvel covers 6 acres of land and was commissioned by Emperor Vespasian in 72 AD and completed in 80 AD by his son Titus. 

It is known for its deadly gladiator battles on the arena floor, which served as Rome’s entertainment center with its mysterious underground chambers

Six million visitors from around the world journey to immerse themselves in the glorious Roman history at this monument.

The Roman Empire was also known for its stunning column architecture, and the Colosseum symbolizes its thriving architectural beauty in Rome! 

Entry Fee: €44 (with Roman Forum & Palatine Hill access)
Timings: 8.30 am to an hour before sunset time. 
Exploration time needed: 1 hour
Address: Piazza del Colosseo, 1, 00184 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions 
Closest Public Transport: Colosseo Metro Station, a 3-minute walk. 

2. Vatican Museum & Sistine Chapel 

Vatican Museum
Image: Italy, 2020 Stock photos by Vecteezy

A haven for pilgrims worldwide, the Vatican City is not entirely a part of Rome, but the holy city is never excluded when visitors say they are visiting Rome.

The Vatican Museums are the most visited in Rome, known for their brilliant artistic wonders by Raphael, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, and other Renaissance masters!

It houses over 8,000 centuries-old art and religious artifacts that belonged to the Popes, beginning with Pope Julius II from the 16th century.

The most popular chapel, the Sistine Chapel, is a part of the Vatican Museum, and it is the sacred Papal Conclave space.

The chapel’s walls and ceiling are adorned with over 500 religious frescos, among which Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam is the most popular.

Visiting the marvelous Sistine Chapel is a must if you enjoy seeing divine art!

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3. St. Peter’s Basilica

St. Peter’s Basilica
Image: Saint Peter’s Basilica Stock photos by Vecteezy

If you want to see the Pope in Rome, St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican City is your best option!

St. Peter’s Basilica is the most religious place in Rome, attracting over 10 million visitors for its spiritual significance.

World-famous architects, including Michelangelo, designed its Baroque architectural dome, and the interior mosaics and sculptures make it more lively.

St. Peter’s Baldachin by Bernini at the altar, a bronze carved canopy-like structure covered with angels, the court of arms, and twisted columns.

You can’t forget to see the famous Michelangelo La Pieta sculpture, depicting the tragic scene of Mary holding Jesus’ crucified body in her lap!  

The Basilica also houses the Papal Tombs beneath it, which is the resting place of many Popes, including the remains of St. Peter!

It is a quiet place in the bustling Vatican City and a must-visit on religious occasions to gain blessings. 

  • Entry Fee: Free! (€29 Paid access to the Dome)
  • Timings: Opens from 7 am to 7 pm from April to September and from 7 am to 6.30 pm in other months. The Basilica opens at 12.30 pm on Wednesdays. 
  • Exploration time needed: 2-3 hours
  • Address: Piazza San Pietro, 00120 Città del Vaticano, Vatican City. Choose Viale della Concillazione entrance. Get Directions
  • Closest Metro Station- Ottaviano Metro Station, 14-minute walk.

Please note: You must follow the Vatican dress code of covering your shoulders and knees while exploring Vatican City attractions. 

4. The Pantheon

The Pantheon
Image: Ancient building of Rome Stock photos by Vecteezy

The Roman Pantheon is a renovated Christian holy space previously dedicated to the Roman Gods and is filled with chapels and tombs.

Like the Colosseum, it is known for its brilliant artistry and architecture, attracting 7 million visitors yearly!

Emperor Hadrian built it in the 2nd century, with a beautiful oculus at the center of the ceiling, which holds the entire structure up. 

The Pantheon stands as a mark of the city’s rich historical and cultural heritage and is one of the most symmetrical buildings in the world.

Artists and architects must step into the quaint Pantheon rooms to admire its unique marble beauty from the inside!

5. Capitoline Museum

Capitoline Museum
Image: Rome, Italy Stock photos by Vecteezy

Standing at the top of Capitoline Hill, the Capitoline Museum takes visitors on a captivating journey of Roman art and history! 

The Museum was the first spot in the world to display paintings in an exhibition and has attracted over 500,000 tourists every year since its opening in the 1930s.

The vast collection covers Baroque and Renaissance artwork, with many Roman sculptures to display.

The most famous sculpture here is the Capitoline Wolf by Antonio del Pollaiuolo, showing the legendary myth of Remus and Romulus.

For art enthusiasts and those who want to see the city from a new perspective while exploring, the Capitoline Museum is a great place to explore!

  • Entry Fee: €33
  • Timings: 9.30 am to 7.30 pm. 
  • Exploration time needed: 2 hours
  • Address: Piazza del Campidoglio, 1, 00186 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions
  • Closest Public Transportation- Arenula/Cairoli Light rail station, a 12-minute walk away.  

6. The Trevi Fountain

The Trevi Fountain
Image: The Famous Trevi Fountain, rome, Italy. Stock photos by Vecteezy

If you still believe in magic, you must wish on a tossed coin in the Trevi Fountain on your trip to Rome!

The Trevi Fountain is a Baroque masterpiece at the heart of Rome, known to gift all its visitors eternal love.

Visitors travel from different parts of the world to admire its carved sculptures and detailed Travertine stone exterior, also used to construct the Colosseum!

At the center of the fountain is a mighty statue of Oceanos, the Roman God of the Sea, riding a magnificent chariot driven by seahorses.

The fountain is otherworldly at night, as soft lighting illuminates it on all sides.

This spot is excellent for kids and myth lovers because of its backstory and striking beauty!

You can also take a walk up the Spanish steps and explore more of Piazza Navona for some shopping, as it is very close to the Trevi fountain. 

  • Entry Fee: €44 (with Colosseum access)
  • Timings: Open 24 hours. Visit early in the morning before 9 am for the least crowd.
  • Exploration time needed: At your own pace. 90 minutes to explore the Trevi fountain, Spanish Steps, and Piazza Navona.   
  • Address: Piazza di Trevi, 00187 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions
  • Closest Public Transportation: Barberini- Fontana di Trevi Metro Station, 8-minute walk.  

7. Roman Forum & Palatine Hill

Roman Forum
Image: Roman Forum in Rome Stock photos by Vecteezy

The Roman Forum and Palatine Hill are Rome’s most important historic landmarks, standing close to the Colosseum. 

The Forum was a hub of politics and culture in the city, where elections took place, and speeches were given to the public.

It is now an archeological site, displaying Saturn, Romulus, and Julius Caesar temples!

You can also see magnificent towering arched columns paying tribute to Titus and Septimus Serves.

The Palatine Hill houses the destruction of the earliest settlements of Rome and the private living quarters of many famous Emperors!

You can also see a Palatine Museum on the hill, which is a Visitation Nun convent from the past.

The Roman Forum and Palatine Hill provide the most stunning view of the Colosseum, making it famous among photographers and history lovers.

  • Timings: 8.30 am to an hour before sunset (similar timings as the Colosseum)
  • Exploration time needed: 3 hours
  • Address:
    – Roman Forum is at Via della Salara Vecchia, 5/6, 00186 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions
    – Palatine Hill is at 00186 Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome Capital, Italy. Get Directions. 
  • Closest public transportation- Colosseo Metro Station, a 4-minute walk from the Forum and a 2-minute walk from Palatine Hill. 

8. Castel Sant’Angelo

Castel Sant'Angelo
Image: Castel Sant’Angelo Stock photos by Vecteezy

The Castel Sant’Angelo is a beautiful museum on the right bank of the Tiber River, originally constructed as a resting place for Emperor Hadrian and his family.

It is a historical spot with some of Rome’s most splendidly decorated rooms and a terrace providing the best view of Rome during sunset.

The monument attracts over a million visitors yearly and has the famous Papal apartments on the fourth floor! 

There is also a beautiful bridge for photography, guarded by ten massive angel statues on either side, which leads to the Castel. 

That’s not all! On entering the Castel, you will be taken aback by the number of weapons, artifacts, and historical artworks on display!

  • Entry Fee: €27
  • Timings: 9 am to 7.30 am, with last entry at 6.30 pm. 
  • Exploration time needed: 2-3 hours
  • Address: Lungotevere Castello, 50, 00193 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions 
  • Closest Public Transportation- Closest bus stop is Piazza Pia, which is 5 minutes away on foot.  

9. Borghese Gallery

Borghese Gallery
Image: Villa Borghese, Rome Stock photos by Vecteezy

The Borghese Gallery boasts an extensive art collection painted by the most famous Renaissance artists like Caravaggio, Bernini, and Raphael!

It is also surrounded by the most beautiful Villa Borghese gardens, the Pincio Gardens, which provides the best Vatican sunset view.

The Gallery holds a private 17th-century collection of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, which attracts more than 400,000 visitors every year!

The art collection in this Gallery consists of ancient Roman sculptures, religious paintings, intricate tapestries, and Baroque art.

The most famous painting, Deposition by Raphael and Bernini’s David and Apollo sculptures, is at the Borghese Art Gallery.

This museum is the second most famous gallery in Rome, after the Vatican Museum, and is a must-experience for all art students and pilgrims. 

  • Entry Fee: €35
  • Timings: From 9 am to 7 pm, with the last entry at 5 pm from Tuesday to Sunday. 
  • Exploration time needed: 2 hours
  • Address: Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5, 00197 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions. 
  • Closest Public Transportation-  Bioparco/Mercadante bus stop, which is 2 minutes away and Flaminio Metro Station, which is a 9-minute walk away. 

10. Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore

Santa Maria Maggiore
Image: Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome Stock photos by Vecteezy

The Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica is one of the most holy places in Rome, known to be where a blanket of snow appeared during summer in 352 AD!

It is a miraculous spot for pilgrims as Mother Mary also appeared to pilgrims in their dreams at the Basilica, after which Pope Libertus built this structure in 432 AD.

The Basilica is Rome’s second most beautiful church, with its Byzantine mosaics depicting Old Testament stories.

It is so similar in beauty to the Sistine Chapel and covered with Renaissance frescos, so it is popularly known as Rome’s second Sistine Chapel!

You can also see an ancient Egyptian obelisk and Bernini’s tomb in the Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica. 

  • Entry Fee: Free!
  • Timings: 7 am to 7 pm, with last entry at 6.30 pm. 
  • Exploration time needed: 1 hour
  • Address: P.za di Santa Maria Maggiore, 00100 Roma RM, Italy. Get Directions. 
  • Closest Public Transportation: 7-minute walk away from Roma Termini

Best Time of the Year to Visit Popular Roman Attractions 

Since these attractions are some of Rome’s most popular tourist spots, you can expect to see huge crowds here when you visit.

Rome is the least crowded in the months of January and February.

You can also expect fewer crowds than usual in the winter from November to March.

Visitors can enjoy cheap ticket prices during this off-peak season, as visitors prefer exploring in warmer weather. 

Don’t visit during Catholic holidays or festivals, as Vatican City will be most crowded on days like Christmas and holy Easter week. 

FAQs for Top 10 places to visit in Rome Italy

  1. What you shouldn’t miss in Rome?

    Some of the must-see attractions in Rome are the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Colosseum, and the Roman Pantheon. 

  2. What is the number one must-see in Rome?

    The Colosseum is one of the best places to visit in Rome; over 6 million visitors come here annually. It is a historical amphitheater with a gruesome history of gladiator fights and public executions. At present, it is famous for its architecture. 

  3. Can you see Rome in 3 days?

    You can explore the most popular attractions mentioned in this list over three days. We recommend getting a 3-day Roma Pass to save money on your trip. 

  4. Is it safe to walk around Rome at night?

    The popular areas of Rome are safe to explore at night. You can take a Rome Night Walking Tour if you feel safer in a group and discover stories of Rome’s backstreets. 

  5. When is Rome least crowded?

    Rome is the least crowded in January and February. You will also find fewer crowds from November to March. 

  6. Which Roman attractions are close to each other to plan a combined visit?

    The Colosseum is close to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, and they have combined tickets! The same goes for the Vatican Musuem, Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter’s Basilica

  7. Which attraction in Rome takes the least amount of time to see?

    You can see the Roman Pantheon in 30 minutes!

  8. Which is the least crowded attraction in Rome among the top ten?

    The Borghese Gallery and Santa Maria Maggiore are slightly less crowded than the other attractions on this list.

Image: Paologallophoto, Petr Polak, sorincolac/Getty Images

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