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Rome is one of a kind. No other city — not even Athens, Istanbul, London, or New York — has as many world-class sites as the Eternal City. Walking down Via del Fori Imperiali towards the Colosseum will impress even the most spoiled and shopping-crazed teenager. The city has so much to offer: besides the Roman heritage, there are also medieval neighborhoods, well-designed squares, colorful markets, and the Vatican City with St Peter’s Basilica and its incredible museums.ColosseumBuilt under Emperor Vespasian in A.D. 70-72 and completed by his son Titus 10 years later, the Flavian Amphitheater, or the Colosseum, is a massive stone arena, which at its peak, could accommodate 80,000 spectators.
As in the movie 'Gladiator,' the Colosseum has hosted violent and brutal displays of gladiatorial combats and wild animal fights, all just for the delight of crowds. The inauguration lasted one hundred days, and approximately 9,000 animals and 2,000 gladiators were killed during the event.

Today, the Colosseum is Rome's most visited sight, which never fails to leave visitors awe-struck. Be sure to also come here at night when it looks even more magical.

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Trevi FountainDesigned by Salvi and completed by Pannini in 1762, the striking Fontana di Trevi amazes onlookers with its 26.3-meter (86 ft) height and 49.15-meter (161.3 ft) width, making it the largest Baroque fountain in the city and the most famous one in the world. Several movies, including "Roman Holiday" and Fellini's "La Dolce Vita", have certainly contributed to its fame. In 2016, Fendi chose the fountain as the stage of one of its most memorable shows ever, wherein a clear plexiglass runway stretched across the Trevi Fountain.
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Roman ForumSandwiched between the Palatine and Capitoline hills, the Forum Romanum (Roman Forum) is an open-air forum that was once the commercial, political, social, and religious hub of ancient Rome. Throughout the Imperial period, Emperors like Julius Caesar and Augusts expanded the Forum to include temples, statues, monuments, a senate house, and low courts. Today, the Forum Romanum is one of the most visited archeological sites in the world and offers fascinating insights into Roman civilisation.
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PantheonAn astonishing 2,000-year-old temple, now a church, the Pantheon is a remarkable building to visit when in Rome. Built as a temple to all gods, the Pantheon is the best-preserved marvel from ancient Rome. Its main and most fascinating feature is the design of the dome and open oculus, the only source of natural light. Tourists from around the world flock here to see what Michelangelo defined as an "angelic and not human design". The Pantheon also houses the tomb of the great painter Raphael.
The square in front of the Pantheon is called Piazza della Rotonda. It is located near Piazza Navona and Campo de Fiori, so take the opportunity to stroll around in this area, there is much to see.

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Vatican CityHeadquarters of the Roman Catholic Church and home to the Pope, the Vatican City is an ecclesiastical state and the smallest state in Europe, both in dimension and population. Though teeny tiny, the state holds 11 noteworthy museums, including the Michelangelo-decorated Sistine Chapel (perhaps the greatest gem), St Peter's Basilica, and St Peter's Square. Marvel at Vatican's treasures with your booked-ahead tour and avoid lining in notoriously slow-moving queues.
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St Peter's BasilicaThe late Renaissance St Peter's Basilica is an iconic landmark of the Vatican City, a monumental structure that the likes of Michelangelo helped bring into existence. Today, the basilica is open to visitors wishing to explore its inside naves and chapels and see works of art by great masters such as Raphael and Bernini. While here, don't miss out on climbing to the top of the dome, where the stunning view of St Peter's Square awaits you.
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Castle of the Holy AngelLocated on the right bank of the Tiber River, guarding one of Rome's oldest bridges, the Castel Sant'Angelo is an imposing cylindrical building, initially commissioned by Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for himself and his family. It was later converted into a fortress, a papal residence, and a prison. Now, it's a museum offering beautiful views of Rome.
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Piazza NavonaThe elongated Piazza Navona with its three impressive fountains, including the Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi with the Egyptian obelisk at its center, is Rome's most famous and vibrant square. Built in the 1st century AD, the square used to be a stadium for athletic competitions and could accommodate over 20,000 spectators. The backdrop of Baroque architecture, tourists, street artists, restaurants, and bars make it the perfect setting to cherish the moment.
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Spanish StepsNamed after the nearby Embassy of Spain, the Spanish Steps link Piazza di Spagna with Piazza di Trinità dei Monti. The monumental stairway is famous for being a gathering point for both tourists and locals who grab a front-row seat to the spectacle of Rome's street life after an exhausting day of shopping or sightseeing. During spring, the Spanish Steps bloom with azalea flowers, making it one of the most photogenic attractions in Rome. The steps became famous all around the world thanks, in part, to Audrey Hepburn's film "Roman Holiday" and Bob Dylan's song "When I Paint My Masterpiece".
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Pasta Cooking Class in RomeItaly does not only attract tourists with the beauty of its landscapes and mesmerizing ancient sites. Italy's exquisite cuisine and passion for all things culinary is, arguably, an even more powerful draw. And for a truly memorable experience in Rome, consider joining a cooking class. This one, in particular, will teach you how to make your own pasta by hand with the help of an expert Italian chef.Stereo Lights/Shutterstock.com
Vespa Tour by NightHop on a vintage Vespa and explore the wonders of Rome, just like Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck in the film "Roman Holiday", in this fun and memorable evening tour. It's a 3-hour sightseeing tour with a professional guide, which will take you around the Eternal City's most famous landmarks, including the Colosseum, the Mouth of the Truth, Circus Maximus, Palatine Hill, Saint Peter's Square, and the stunning Trevi Fountain. A quick stop for gelato and coffee is also included.Karl Köhler/unsplash
Day Trip to Mount Vesuvius & Pompeii from RomeExplore one of the world's most fascinating archeological sites on a day trip to Pompeii from Rome. Gain interesting insight from your expert guide into the eruption of Mount Vesuvius that buried the city of Pompeii and the surrounding area. Walk through the cobblestone streets to see the ruins of the forum, bathhouse, individual homes, and even a brothel. Plus, hike up the side of the volcano, walk along its ridge, gaze into the crater, and then enjoy dramatic views over the Bay of Naples.Christopher Ott/Unsplash
Mostra Leonardo da VinciThe Mostra Leonardo da Vinci in Rome is a fascinating exhibition that pays homage to one of history's most brilliant minds, Leonardo da Vinci. Located in the heart of Rome, this extraordinary showcase celebrates the Renaissance master's unparalleled contributions to art, science, and invention. Through a remarkable collection of his drawings, inventions, and artworks, visitors are transported into the world of da Vinci, gaining a profound appreciation for his innovative ideas and visionary concepts.
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Baths of CaracallaBuilt under the reigns of Emperors Septimius Severus and his son Caracalla, the Terme di Caracalla is what remains of once functioning ancient public baths. It is, as of today, one of the best (and largest) remaining examples of a similar structure.
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Borghese Gallery & MuseumRome falls short of Venice and Florence when it comes to art, but this gallery is an exception. The bi-level art gallery, housed in the former Villa Borghese Pinciana, displays masterpieces by renowned artists such as Botticelli, Raphael, Caravaggio, Rubens and Tiziano. The adjacent gardens are as breathtaking as the artwork showcased in the gallery.
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Hadrian's VillaOnce the temporary retreat and later home to decorated Roman Emperor Hadrian, Villa Adriana dates back millennia when it was conceived as an 'ideal city' with baths, pools, fountains and lush gardens. The structure combined elements of Greek, Roman, and Egyptian influences. Since 1999, Villa Adriana belongs on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.
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Villa d'EsteA UNESCO World Heritage Site, Villa d’Este is an unparalleled example of Renaissance architecture, located just under an hour away from the city center in Tivoli (next to Hadrian's Villa). Marvel at its fountains, terraces, and gardens, explore the building from the inside and feel like one of the many artworks featuring Villa d’Este has come alive.
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Domus Aurea — Nero’s Golden HouseIn the year 64 AD, Emperor Nero built a palace almost one mile long — stretching from Palatine Hill all the way to Oppio Hill. Some parts were covered in gold, precious stones and featured splendid decor. After Nero’s death, it was filled in with earth to obliterate the tyrant’s memory. It was accidentally rediscovered in the 15th century, and today, you can walk through 30 of Nero’s 150 underground rooms.
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Rome Opera HouseTeatro dell'Opera di Roma is an Opera House that still preserves its distinctive features of the 19th century. Since opening its doors in 1880, this historic venue has hosted numerous notable productions, including the world premiere of Puccini's iconic opera, Tosca. Its resplendent red-and-gold interiors and rich historical significance make it a captivating destination, appealing even to those not particularly drawn to opera. Note that during summer, the ravishing ruins of the Baths of Caracalla are the venue for the opera company's outdoor performances.
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Museum of RomeThe Museo di Roma, housed in the neoclassical 18th century Palazzo Braschi — the former headquarters of the National Fascist Party — receives critical acclaim for its exclusive collection. The museum holds approximately 40,000 pieces of artwork, all depicting Rome's history from the Middle Ages until the 20th century. After the Second World War, 300 families were evacuated to this location, and many of the frescoes were damaged by the fires that were lit in order to keep them warm.
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Park of the AqueductsAway from the bustle of Rome, this park area is marked by what is left of two ancient aqueducts that once carried water. Both aqueducts were built by the Romans and are worth the ride out into Rome's suburbs.
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Santa CostanzaRome is home to many astonishing churches that boggle the mind, such as the Mausoleum of St Costanza. Tucked away outside the Aurelian Walls, this 4th-century church is an example of early Christian art and architecture. Its mosaics of natural elements, such as birds, palms, and plants, along with the dome and the unusual design make it the perfect setting for couples to exchange their wedding vows.
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National Etruscan Museum of Villa GiuliaSet in what used to be the country retreat for Pope Julius III, the Etruscan museum in Rome stores some impressive artifacts of the mysterious Etruscan and pre-Roman treasures. The Sarcophagus of the Spouses depicting a reclining man and woman on its lid is the masterpiece here and a true example of art from the 6th century BC.
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Basilica of San ClementeThe Basilica of San Clemente is more than a simple church; it is a real museum that houses layers and layers of history. Behind the humble doors of this 12th-century church lie the remnants of the original basilica dating back to the 4th century, the remains of a 1st-century Roman villa, and breathtaking Byzantine mosaics beautifully adorning the ceiling.
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CinecittàExplore the secrets of the cinema through the exhibition of the story of Cinecittà. Monumental film sets and costumes worn by stars like Sophia Loren and Alberto Sordi will fascinate the visitors inside this dream factory. Inside the exhibition, you'll find an elegant restaurant, decorated like a film studio and a bookshop immersed in the big green park.
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Ara Pacis MuseumBuilt in honor of Emperor Augustus after his triumphant return from the wars in Spain and Gaul, the Museum of the Ara Pacis houses the Ara Pacis Augustae, an ancient altar dedicated to Pax, the Roman goddess of peace. Visitors can explore the well-preserved marble reliefs and intricate carvings on the Ara Pacis, offering a glimpse into ancient Roman art and symbolism.
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Aventine HillThe Aventine Hill is one of the Seven Hills on which ancient Rome was built. The real off-the-beaten-path gem offers magnificent views of the city and leads to fabulous rose gardens and impressive religious structures, including the Basilica of Santa Sabina — the oldest Roman Basilica in Rome. The highlight here is the keyhole of the Knights of Malta, where people line up to enjoy the stunning view over the Dome of Saint Peter's.Catarina Belova/Shutterstock.com
VIGAMUS — The Video Game Museum of RomeIf you love video games, you cannot miss the opportunity to visit VIGAMUS. Discover well-known characters, look back on video games' history, and explore the various interactive areas the museum has to offer.
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National Roman Museum — Palazzo MassimoFeaturing one of the world's most important archeological collections, The Museo Nazionale Romano, located across four different sites: Palazzo Massimo alle Terme, Palazzo Altemps, Therm di Diocleziano, and Crypta Balbi, displays exhibits from the pre- and early history of Rome, with a focus on archeological findings from the period of ancient Rome.
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Sant'Agnese in AgoneLocated in the beautiful Piazza Navona, Sant'Agnese in Agone is a stunning 17th-century Baroque church with frequent live music concerts. Marvel at its beautiful, fresco-adorned insides, and enjoy the sounds of 17th-century melodies.
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The Keats-Shelley HouseDedicated to the Romantic poets — Keats, Shelley, and Byron — who each stayed in Rome and died tragically young, this charming period house contains a chain of rooms lined with rare books and relics, including Keats' last resting place. There's also a gift shop, an introductory film, and a spacious terrace.
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Goethe HouseFrom 1786 to 1788, the great poet Johann Wolfgang Goethe (1749-1832) lived with other German artists in the center of Rome. Today, the museum Casa di Goethe commemorates the famous guest and his Italian journey with exhibitions and cultural events.
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Wax MuseumWhile a wax museum might not be among the Eternal City's top attractions, it will probably interest second and third-time visitors with its curious collection of well-known Italian and international figures — from former Popes and ancient Romans to Pavarotti and Winston Churchill — plus a waxworks laboratory open to guests.
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Scuderie del QuirinaleHoused in an 18th-century carriage and stable house, the Scuderie del Quirinale is now an impressive exhibition space of nearly three thousand square meters hosting regular and varied art exhibits. The complex is located right next to the Palazzo del Quirinale, where the Italian president currently resides.
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MAXXI: National Museum of 21st Century ArtMAXXI, Italy's first national museum devoted to the arts of the XXI century and designed by Zaha Hadid, is a platform open to all forms of contemporary creativity, from art to architecture, from photography to design, from fashion to cinema. A place for meetings, exchange, and collaboration.
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Explora: The Children's Museum of RomeA few hours of challenging entertainment for Rome's youngest visitors await at Explora: Il Museo dei Bambini di Roma (The Children's Museum of Rome). Here, kids will learn all about the workings of the adult world, including jobs, wages, and personal budgets. The interactive experience is both engaging and educational.
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Villa FarnesinaVilla Farnesina, considered one of the most magnificent creations of the Italian Renaissance, was built by Baldassare Peruzzi for the rich Sienese banker Agostino Chigi, called the "magnifico". He lived the splendid life of a Renaissance merchant in a setting of pomp and splendor, entertaining artists, poets, and noblemen with sumptuous banquets. The interior is richly decorated with frescoes by great masters such as Raphael, Sebastiano del Piombo, Giovanni Antonio Bazzi, known as Sodoma, and Peruzzi himself.
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Palazzo delle EsposizioniThe Palazzo delle Esposizioni is an art and cultural event venue that frequently hosts various events, ranging from film screenings to book readings and exhibitions of modern art, along with musical and theatrical performances. There is also a pleasant Italian restaurant on the rooftop.
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