Rome Travel Tips
Keep in Mind...
- Il Conto, Per favore If you need the bill at a restaurant, be persistent yet pleasant in asking. Life moves slower in Roma, so asking for your check once doesn't necessarily mean it’s on the way.
- Ditch the diet This is Rome, home of fettucine, ravioli, bruschetta, cappuccino … enough said.
- Speak Italiano When in Rome, do as the Romans do and at least try to speak a little Italian. Hello is ciao, please is per favore, and thank you is grazi.
Rome, the city of seven hills, enjoyed a mythic beginning. Romulus and Remus — twin brothers who were nursed by a she-wolf and fathered by a war god — reportedly founded the Eternal City. And although historians are a little skeptical about this epic entry into the world, most travelers are absolutely certain that there is something most magical about Rome. Whether it's the mystery of nearby Vatican City or the ghosts of the Colosseum, an afternoon caffè on Piazza Navona or a piled-high plate of pasta at a trattoria, Roma is sure to enchant.
Italy's capital city, Rome is also known for a history that dates back to the eras of Octavian, Julius Caesar and Hadrian, among others. Left behind are structures like the Pantheon, the Roman Forum and dozens of churches, among other historic gems. Art enthusiasts will relish the trove of art housed at the Vatican Museums, and foodies will enjoy the splendid Italian fare, not to mention the gelato. And though its momentous past is the focus for many vacationers, Rome is also a fast-paced, modern and relevant city, with gleaming designer storefronts, sleek hotels and cutting-edge restaurants.
How To Save Money in Rome
- Buy the Roma Pass This money-saving pass gives you free or reduced admission to museums, discounts on certain exhibits, and free travel on public transportation for three days.
- Church hop Many of Rome’s little churches hold beautiful treasures — and many are free to visit.
- Visit on Sunday If you plan your trip over the last Sunday of the month, you can visit two of Rome's most popular museums — the Vatican Museums and the Musei Capitolini — for free.
Rome Culture & Customs
Trying to look like a resident isn't difficult, especially if your own wardrobe is filled with high-end designer labels. Condé Nast Traveler says: "Think brands, brands, brands — and preferably Italian: Versace, Gucci, Cavalli, or Armani." Italian women strive for a sultry look, wearing tight-fitting dresses, tops and pants, accompanied by a pair of steep heels. Men wear immaculately cut suits. On the streets, snug jeans and fitted shirts are the norm for both men and women.
In 2002, Italy traded its lira currency for the euro. Keep in mind that the exchange rate makes this already expensive city more costly for travelers from the U.S. and other countries.
Rome is overflowing with restaurants, from trattorias that cook up family recipes spanning generations to fusion restaurants that plate up the latest culinary trend. Don't miss out on Italian specialties — scampi alla griglia (grilled shrimp), carciofi alla romana (artichokes with white wine, mint and garlic) and Saltimbocca alla romana (veal with ham, cheese and sage), among other regional and country-wide specialties. Restaurants' wine lists are also not to be ignored and neither are the gelato shops.