Plan the Perfect Summer Itinerary in Rome

Although some say summer is a testing time to go to Rome while the inner city temperatures soar, there is so much to see and do and participate in, that it’s worth braving the heat. The weather instills a lazy lethargy in everyone so it’s a different atmosphere than if you went just two months earlier as many locals have fled their hometown to the cooler beaches at the sea. To make the most of these hazy months, we’ve put together a summer itinerary of things to do and places to go when in Rome in the summer season. Just take it slow, there’s no need to rush, piano, piano... as they say! First thing’s first; buy an open top bus tour ticket so you can explore the city at your leisure. None of this marching onwards business, let the bus do the work as you sit back, relax and take in the sights (don't forget the suncream). We’ve tailored this itinerary so you can cruise around town while taking in the most iconic monuments and landmarks in Rome, while allowing you the best of both worlds, you can hop off at the best spots along the way making your tour of Rome even easier. Morning (9am-11am) Stop number one must be Campo de Fiori. An old bustling square at the hub of commercial and street culture both past and present, it hosts a daily market every morning of exotic fruit and veg, cheeses, flowers, pasta, souvenirs and everything else under the sun. Literally. However, Campo de Fiori has both a wealthy and murky past. In the Middle Ages it was a place of execution where ‘heretics’ were tortured to their death. You can even see the statue of Giordani Bruno the monk - facing the Vatican in defiance - erected in celebration of the right to free speech. You’ll also notice the fountain in the square which dates back to 1590, brought in to supply the neighbourhood with fresh water and named Fontana della Terrina because of its resemblance to a terrine. Midday (12pm-3pm) After a few hours of browsing the stalls and dining on some fresh fruit for a late brunch – don’t forget to prop yourself up at a café for a shot of espresso, mandatory fuel for the day – hop back on the bus and head to the Vatican City for a walk through the Museums as it's the perfect time to avoid the crowds as tourists stop for lunch. Don't forget to flash your OMNIA and Rome Card (most recommended!) to skip to the front of the queue and wave goodbye to standing in line, too. Admire over 9 miles of world famous art, sculptures, tapestries and frescoes by the masters such as Michelangelo’s The Last Judgement, the portraits of the Popes, the hall of sculptures and much more. Mid-afternoon (4pm-6pm) Just around the corner is Saint Peter’s Basilica. Here you can seek refuge from the hot sun and walk inside this marble monument for free. Discover the holy shrine of the Catholic community and you can appreciate just why this basilica is so sacred. The original construction started in 1506 and there is blinding evidence of Baroque inspiration and Byzantine architecture from a series of artists who worked on it over the years. Passing through the hands of Michelangelo and Bernini to name a few, the church is famed for its imposing structure – including the baldachin, the piazza of colonnades and even the crypt below ground. What’s the most impressive though is the dome. Included in the entry is the opportunity to ascend into the inner dome and walk around the perimeter, but what’s more breath-taking is the main dome climb where you can stand at 136.6 m high (having climbed the 551 steps) for the most spectacular views of Rome. Unparalleled, trust us. Sunset (7pm-9pm) After all that excitement, what better way to wind down your day than to find an aperitivo in the Trastevere district for a refreshment and a sit down. If you want to try your luck at squeezing in another attraction before you call it a day, the Villa Borghese Gallery and the Coliseum shut at 7.30pm - so if you make a run for it you might be able to tick another one off the list. However, as the sun sets and the temperatures drop there’s a cold Peroni or Chianti with your name on it, not to mention a whole array of nibbles and light-bites to tide you over until dinner.... Remember the saying, piano, piano... Trastevere will open your eyes to a true sense of Rome in the summer. Decorated with outdoor tables spilling onto the piazzas, men in their suit jackets and women in skirts walk hand in hand as everyone from the best dressed to the holidaymakers love this pocket district. Nightfall (9pm-bedtime) If you stay in the area (and we recommend you do) you must head down to the banks of the river where big clubs and bars in the city and surrounding area have relocated from July until September. With big name DJs inconspicuously entertaining through the night, you can wander through themed bars, sheisha cafes, man-made beaches – there’s a real sense of the contemporary, young cosmopolitan life contrasting the backdrop of Ancient Rome, Castel Sant’Angelo and the iconic St Peter’s Basilica. Why not make the most of your trip in the summer with an OMNIA Vatican & Rome Card - with this you can save both time and money on your adventure helping you skip the lines (a blessing in the heat!) and well as giving you free entry into Rome's top attractions - including a bus tour ticket! Where's the catch? There isn't one...

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