Tips and advice
Megan Hills

10 Reasons Why You Should Visit Rome at Least Once in Your Life

Still undecided on the Italian capital? Here's why you should visit Rome

If your extensive travel guides and the promise of affordable flight tickets haven't swayed you yet, there's a number of reasons why you should visit Rome on your next big holiday. From the culture to the food, here's some things that may just tip you over the edge.

The pasta

Take a leaf out of Joey Tribbiani's book and bring your stretchy eating pants - you're going to need them. Rome is renowned for its hearty pasta dishes and as the birthplace of carbonara, a piping hot plate of the stuff is exactly what the doctor ordered. If you're feeling really adventurous, try quinto quarto - you'll have to check our Roman food guide to find out exactly what you'll be getting yourself into.

La Louve Capitoline #lupacapitolina #romulus #remus #rome #italy

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The culture

The Vatican aside, every inch of Rome brims with culture. From the outstanding Capitoline Museums, to the Museum of Rome, to the Borghese Gallery, the hardest part will be narrowing which cultural hotspots to make a priority.

The history

As one of the oldest cities in the world, Rome has seen empires rise and fall and endures and still stands to tell its tales. From the bloody gladiator battles in the Colosseum to the crumbling remains of the Roman Forum, it's sometimes hard to believe that the skyscrapers of the 21st century coexist in the same city.

In honour of #NationalIceCreamDay yesterday 🍦

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The gelato

There's nothing better than a rich cup of gelato after a hot summer's day spent pounding the pavement, and luckily you won't have to go far in Rome. With a gelateria on every block selling everything from ultra chocolatey flavours to more unusual black cherry goods, this sweet treat is impossible to resist.

Visitando la basílica de San Pedro #basilica #sanpedro #sanpietro #vaticano

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The spirituality

As the heart of the Catholic church, Rome brims with hundreds of churches spanning from the landmarks like St Peter's Basilica to quiet little chapels tucked down side streets. Naturally, the Vatican City is a must for anybody interested in the religious traditions, art and history.

The Pope

Even if you're not a practicing Catholic, there's something deeply emotional about watching hopeful people fill St. Peter's Square waiting for the Pope making a public blessing. While you're unlikely to see him flitting around in his Popemobile, he does occasionally conduct public masses though you'll have to book your free tickets way in advance.

The art

Rome is absolutely lazy with creative talent - both of the new masters and the old. However it's the old world works that most people flock to see, whether you're taking in the remnants of ancient Rome's sculptures at the Capitoline Museums or seeing Botticelli's works in the Vatican City. One thing remains though - Michelangelo's ceiling frescoes at the Sistine Chapel have to be seen to be believed.

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The piazzas

At night, the trattorias and bars dotting some of Rome's biggest squares come alive with people spilling out onto the street and music filling the air. The laidback atmosphere is infectious and it's worth making time for a night out, especially with a glass of wine in hand.

The location

If you're not the kind of traveller to settle in one spot, Rome is a great jumping off point to get to the rest of the country. As one of the best connected cities in Italy, there's more cultural excursions to be had over in Florence and Pompeii while a number of beaches are easily accessible for a sunny day trip.

The fashion

You'll see some of the best dressed people in the world in Rome, from men dressed in slick tailored suits to women gliding by in sleek dresses. It's undeniable that Italy has great style and has served as the birthplace for great designers like Donatella Versace, Emilio Pucci and Giorgia Armani - though it's worth keeping an eye on the independent boutiques for lush leatherwork and classy outfits.

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