Monthly Archives: February 2016

THE TEN ATTRACTIONS AND MONUMENTS TO VISIT IN ROME IN A WEEK

Visiting Rome in a week will be an unforgettable experience for you. You will have time to enjoy what the eternal city has to offer to its visitors.
We suggest you the main attractions and monuments that you absolutely should not miss. They are all super-searched attractions, so we suggest you to get an online ticket before you start your visit, in order to avoid the queue and to save save time and energy for the visit!

Below are listed the 10 attractions and the main monuments to visit in Rome in a week:

 Rome in a week: don't miss the Colosseum
Colosseum

Symbol par excellence of Rome and of Italy itself, it is the most visited attraction in the city, with almost five million visitors a year.
Started by Vespasiano in 72 d.c., was inaugurated by his son Titus in 80 a.d. It could host more than 50,000 spectators who came here to watch gladiatorial or animal fights. It is the largest of the Roman monuments left until today.

The queues at the entrance are very long. We therefore advise you to buy the ticket online for priority access.

The amazing Basilica of San Pietro in RomeBasilica of Saint Peter

It is located where the emperor Constantine had a shrine erected in the year 324 in honor of Peter the Apostle, who had been crucified and buried right there.
Today’s look is due to the project of Bramante, dating back to 1506. It was built by artists such as Raphael, Antonio da San Gallo, Michelangelo. The interior, as well as the colonnade were made by Bernini. The basilica is the largest church in the world. If you want to climb on its amazing dome we suggest you get the ticket online: you will be able to skip the line!

Opening times: 1st October – 31 March every day 7.00-18.30 / 1st April – 30 September every day 7-19.00.

 The Laocoonte group at the Vatican Museums. Buy the tickets online to skip the line
The Vatican Museums

Among the most beautiful museum complexes in the world, they host an incredible collection of works of art collected by different popes over the centuries. To visit them it is possible to make different itineraries, all of which end with the Sistine Chapel. The buildings that house the Vatican Museums extend over an area of 5.5 hectares. The Pinacoteca, the Pio-Clementino Museum, the Geographical Maps Gallery, the Raffello Rooms and the Sistine Chapel are absolutely worth seeing. There are very long queues at the entrance. If you want to save time and effort, you should purchase an online ticket.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 9.00-18.00 (last admission at 4pm and exit from the rooms half an hour before closing). Full ticket € 16, reduced ticket € 8.

The Pantheon, one of the attractions to visit during the week in Roma
Pantheon

A temple dedicated to all the gods, this building, which is one the best preserved buildings of ancient Rome, was transformed into a Christian church in 608. The Pantheon was built by Agrippa in 27 b.c., as attested by the inscription on the pediment.
Both its height and the diameter of the interior measure 43.3 meters. The extraordinary dome, which is the largest stone vault ever built, is considered the most important work of classical architecture. Together with the Colosseum, the Pantheon is one of the great symbols of Rome and the best preserved ancient monument of the capital.

The Trevi fountain, an attraction of Rome not to be missed
Trevi Fountain

Among the most photographed monuments in Rome, along with the Colosseum, it is one of the symbols of Rome in the world. This splendid baroque fountain, designed by Nicola Savi in 1732, occupies almost completely the small square in which it is located. It represents the waggon of Neptune pulled by tritons with sea horses (a wild one and a docile one) that symbolize the different aspects of the sea.

azza Navona, not to be missed during your weekly visit of Rome
Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona is the window of the center of Rome with its sculptured fountains, the beautiful Baroque palaces and the outdoor cafes. The square is always crowded with tourists, street artists, street vendors. Piazza Navona has been the seat of the main market of the city for 300 years. In this square you can compare the works of two great artists of the Baroque: the fountain of the four rivers by Bernini and the Church of Sant’Agnese in Agone built by Borromini.

Piazza di Spagna, one of the most famous squares of Rome
Piazza di Spagna

This 1725 Baroque square, with its famous Trinità dei Monti staircase (recently restored), has always attracted tourists and travelers and is still today a popular meeting place. The fountain in the shape of a boat (the Barcaccia) located in the square, is the work of Pietro Bernini, father of the famous Gian Lorenzo, and represents a sinking boat. It is one of the main places of the nightlife in the historic center of Rome.

The Borghese Gallery in Rome
Museo Galleria Borghese

Located in the park of Villa Borgese, a green lung of Rome, it hosts one of the most prestigious collections of art objects in Rome. In one place you will find a concentration of works by Caravaggio, Bernini, Botticelli and Raphael, and the famous statue of Canova portraying Paolina Borghese as the winning Venus. We recommend you to buy an online ticket for priority access.

Opening times: closed on Monday, Tuesday to Sunday from 8.30 to 19.30 closed on January 1, December 25. The entry is allowed up to half an hour before the closing time.
Full ticket €11,00(9,00 + 2,00 of mandatory booking), reduced ticket €6,50 (4,50 + 2,00 of mandatory booking). The cost of the entrance ticket could be increased.

The Vittoriano, one of the main monuments of Rome
Piazza Venezia

Connected to the Colosseum through the monumental Via dei Fori Imperiali is perhaps the most important crossroad of the city. On its sides there are Palazzo Venezia, the first large Renaissance building in Rome and the Vittoriano, a monument built since in 1885 to celebrate the unity of Italy. Inaugurated in 1911 it was then dedicated to the unknown soldier.
Online tickets are recommended to avoid long lines.

The Capitolini Museums in the piazza del Campidoglio of Rome
Capitolini Museums

They constitute a public gallery of the world’s oldest sculptures. Created by Pope Sixtus IV in 1471, they were enriched by successive popes as new statues were brought to light. The museums occupy the Palazzo Nuovo and the Palazzo dei Conservatori, both located on Piazza del Campidoglio.

Opening times: open every day 9.30-19.30, on the 24 and 31 December 9.30-14. The ticket office closes an hour earlier. Closed on January 1st, May 1st, December 31st. Full ticket € 14, reduced ticket € 12

PARTICIPATE IN THE AUDIENCE OF POPE FRANCIS

If you have decided to visit Rome in 3 days (but not during the weekend) and you are faithful to Pope Francis, do not miss the opportunity to attend his weekly audience. It takes place on Wednesday at 10.30 am in St. Peter’s Square or in the Paul VI Audience Hall, also known as the Sala Nervi. Whenever possible, Pope Francis visits the whole square with the popemobile starting from under the Arco delle Campane, making several stops to greet and embrace the people around.

By booking the tickets with Getyourguide you can also add to the Pope Francis audience a guided tour that will introduce you to the fascinating stories of the papacy and the artists who have contributed to making the Vatican City one of the greatest beauties in the world.
For the tour, which lasts 4 hours, both a smartphone and paper vouchers are accepted and it is possible to cancel until the day before to receive a full refund.

By booking the tour:

  • You will be asked to book and confirm the participation in the hearing
  • You will receive tickets comfortably and you will have the best seats
  • Before the beginning of the Pope’s speech you will be provided with all the necessary information and explanations related to the event
  • You will be given headphones to follow carefully all the speech by Pope Francis
  • You will take part in the papal audience accompanied by the tour staff

Notes:
The tour ends at the beginning of the hearing and the duration of the hearing may vary
It is necessary to wear appropriate clothing (knees, shoulders and back should be covered)
People in wheelchairs or those with reduced mobility must be accompanied or assisted by someone.

Roman Divinities – The Names and Their Characteristics

The Temple of Venus Genitrice, the Temple of Minerva, the Temple of Vesta (all in the Roman Forum) are just some of the sacred buildings devoted to the Roman divinities that you can admire when visiting Rome. The whole city was dotted with temples and sacred places to go to pray to the gods to solve social, personal issues, thank them or make the necessary sacrifices.
The Roman pantheon was mainly made up of divinities of ancient Italic origins, which, after the influence of other peoples, assimilated foreign gods, especially Greek ones.

But how were these Roman deities?
Like the Greek ones, they were imagined in human semblance and with life habits similar to those of men with personal stories that often clashed with them not only in love affairs, but also in warlike affairs.
They obviously had over-the-top qualities and powers, but also the characteristic defects of men. They frequently argued and were jealous of each other.

Below you will find a small list of the major Roman divinities, so that you will be able to be prepared when you visit Rome.

JUPITER

King of Heaven and the founder of all gods. Juno’s brother and husband was famous for his extramarital adventures from which many heroes were born, such as Hercules, demigods and some monsters. His symbols were the lightning and the eagle (symbol, among other things, also of Rome).
Greek form: Zeus

NEPTUNE

God of the sea and the earthquakes, was the brother of Jupiter and Pluto. Married to the Anfitrite nymph, lived in an underwater palace. He had four children from her, including Triton and Cimopolea. He was also the father of many more or less monstrous creatures, such as the legendary cyclops and the legendary Pegasus. His symbols were the trident and the horse, created by himself by the foam of the waves.
Greek Form: Poseidon

PLUTON

Brother of Jupiter and Neptune, he was never welcome on the Olympus, so that he did not even have a throne in the gods’ residence. He controlled the Hells, where he lived. In Roman times it also became the divinity of metals, precious stones and everything that is under ground. He kidnappedr Proserpina, daughter of Ceres, and made her his bride. His symbol was the helm of Terror.
Greek form: Ade

MARS

God of war, son of Jupiter and Juno, in the Roman era he was very important. He was given the name of Ultore, the Avenger. Protector of the Empire, he lost his ferocious character, typical of the Greek form, to assume a more rigid and demanding personality. He was the lover of Venus, father of Phobos and Deimos. His symbols were the boar and the bloody spear.
Greek Form: Ares

VULCAN

Juni’s son, when he was newly born was thrown down from the Olympus by his mother because he did not look good. God of fire, craftsmen and blacksmiths, he was married to Venus. His symbols were the anvil and the quail (which bounces along strangely, just like him).
Greek Form: Hephaestus

APOLLO

Diana’s twin was the god of music, poetry, medicine, archery, and bachelors. As the sister represented the moon, he was attributed to the sun.
Greek Form: Apollo

MERCURY

God of wayfarers, travelers, thieves, and messengers. He was the courier of the gods, son of Jupiter and Maia. His symbols were the the helmet. the winged sandals and the caduceo.
Greek Form: Ermes

BACCUS

Originally he was a demigod, son of Jupiter and a mortal, Semele, but after inventing the wine he was promoted to divinity by taking the throne of Vesta. He was the god of wine and festivities. The symbols were the tiger, the leopard, the grape and the thyrsus, a spear topped by a pine cone.
Greek Form: Dionysus

JUNO

Wife and sister of Jupiter, she was the goddess of women, marriage, maternity and fertility. Jupiter gave her a son, Mars, and a daughter, Iuventas, a goddess of youth. Her symbols were the peacock and the cow (a maternal animal).
Greek Form: Era

CERERE

Goddess of Agriculture, sister of Juno and Vesta. Mother of Proserpina, her symbols were poppy and barley.
Greek form: Demetra

VESTA

Goddess of the household and home, gave up his throne on the Olympus to Bacco. She was a virgin and very humble goddess. In the Roman period, a group of priests who devoted themselves to the goddess took on a great deal of importance, thanks to the creation of the Order of the Vestals. Its symbol was a crane.
Greek Form: Estia

MINERVA

She was the goddess of wisdom and minor arts. She was not much loved by the Romans, because she was the protector of the Greeks, their rivals. She was a virgin goddess born of Jupiter’s mind. Its symbol was the owl.
Greek form: Athens

VENUS

Goddess of love born out of the blood of Uranus and the sea foam. She was given a wife to Vulcan, but it was well known that she was in love with Mars. From the union of the two, Phobos and Deimos were born, Fear and Terror. Her symbols were the dove and the magic belt that made anyone fall in love with her.
Greek Form: Aphrodite

DIANA

Goddess of hunting, of virgin girls and of childbirth, later of the moon. She never married or had children. She was the twin of Apollo, the sons of Leto and Jupiter. At her service she had some aides, the so-called Hunters of Artemis, virgin girls under her protection.
Greek form: Artemis

You may also be interested

Visiting Rome in 3 days – Our recommended itinerary 
Visiting Rome in 2 days with children – Where to go and what to do 
Trips outside of Rome – What to see and where to go
The Colosseum – What is it like?
The itinerari of films set in Rome

THE ITINERARY OF MOVIES SET IN ROME

 

 

THE TREVI FOUNTAIN

Immortalized by Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg in the film by Fellini “La dolce vita”, the Trevi Fountain is one of the main attractions of Rome and should be an essential stop on your itinerary in the capital. If you want to visit Rome in 3 days or if you only have one weekend, you can not leave without having seen it and thrown your coin into the water to be able to come back!

The Trevi Fountain is a very large sculptural complex, so much so that it occupies almost the entire square.
It was created by Nicola Salvi in 1732 and completed in 1762 by Giuseppe Pannini.
Made with travertine, marble, plaster, stucco and metals, it represents Ocean on a cart pulled by two horses (a wild one and another docile, that represent the different moods of the sea), which in turn are guided by tritons.

The fountain, today as when it was built, is fed by one of the oldest aqueducts in Rome, the aqueduct of Acqua Virgo (Acqua Vergine), built between 19 and 22 a.C. from Agrippa. The name Trevi derives from the fact that at this point three ways converged.

On the eastern side of the Trevi Fountain there is a large vase in stone called “ace of cups” because it recalls the playing card. It is said that during the construction works, a barber, who owned his shop on the square, continued to criticize the Salvi’s project. Salvi then added the vase so as to prevent the barber from seeing the work and continuing to make his annoying criticism.

Since the aqueduct was completed on this site there has always been a fountain. In 1453 Pope Nicholas V commissioned Leon Battista Alberti to restore the water way.
In 1629, Urban VIII commissioned Bernini to design a new fountain, but it was never built.
In 1730 Pope Clement XII announced a competition to choose the best architectural projects. The Salvi’s project won the competition and two years later the works began.

The last restoration of the Trevi Fountain dates back to 2015. The cost of 2.2 million euros were financed by the Fendi fashion house and the work brought the fountain back to its former glory.

TRADITIONS RELATED TO THE TREVI FOUNTAIN

The most famous tradition is the tossing of a coin into the fountain: by doing this with closed eyes and turning on the opposite side of Palazzo Poli, one would favor a future return to the city.
The origins of this tradition are not well known. Perhaps it could derive from the ancient custom of throwing into the sacred sources obols or small gifts to propitiate the local divinity, as it happens for the wells of desires.

There is no tourist who does not know this tradition and who does not perform this ritual. The Municipality of Rome established in 2006 that all the reclaimed coins (a sum equal to about three thousand euros per day) should be destined for Caritas in Rome. In fact, around 3,000 euros are drawn every day from the fountain. All those who take the money for themselves are prosecuted criminally.

According to another tradition, when people still drank water from the fountain (and the water of Trevi, which today is used only for irrigation and to feed the fountains, was considered among the best in Rome, because it is not calcareous) girls asked their boyfriend who was leaving to drink it in a glass, that was later shattered in sign and wish of fidelity.

The Itinerary of Movies Set in Rome

There are so many movies set in Rome that have become part of our culture and have become a reference point in the collective imagination of each of us. Who does not have in mind the famous bath of Anita Eckberg in the Trevi Fountain, or the unforgettable Audrey Hepburn riding a Vespa around the Capital with Gregory Peck in the Roman Holiday movie?
In this itinerary we offer you a tour of the attractions that have been the background of some of the most beautiful movies set in Rome since the 1940s. The walk takes place in the center of Rome so we left to you the choice of the point from which to start, according to the movies and their main locations. If you have decided to visit Rome in 3 days you can choose this itinerary as an alternative to the classical tours.

The List of Some of the Most Famous Films Set in Rome

Roma città aperta (Rome Open City), among the Movies Set in Rome

Rome Open City – 1945: the Roberto Rossellini’s film, played by a great Anna Magnani, is considered one of the masterpieces of the world cinema and of neo-realism.

Set in a Rome where the Fascist regime has just fallen, he sees as protagonists a priest, a commoner and a communist engineer who are trying to resist the violence of German invaders. Many scenes have been shot in the Pigneto (like the final one where the protagonist, Pina, is killed while running behind the truck that takes away her husband captured by German soldiers, this takes place in Via Raimondo Montecuccoli). Another location is Piazza di Spagna where you can still see the pension from which a partisan, surprised by the Nazis, flees on the roofs of the Spanish embassy.

Vacanze romane, one of the movies Set in Rome

Vacanze Romane(Roma n Holidays) – 1953: Unforgettable film by William Wyler with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. Shot entirely in Rome and in the studios of Cinecittà.
Among the most famous locations where is shown the story of the beautiful Princess Anna, heir to the throne of an imaginary kingdom and the American journalist Joe, there is Via Margutta 51 (the house where Joe lives and where Anna spends a night); the Trevi Fountain (where the haircut scene is set); the Trinity Monument Stairway (where they meet Bradley with an ice cream); The Pantheon (scene at the bar with the photographer who is the journalist’s friend); The Colosseum (where the protagonists enter after the famous Vespa tour); The Mouth of Truth (where the scene of the unspeakable secret takes place); Piazza Barberini, (seat of the Embassy where Anna was a guest).

Un Americano a Roma (An American in Rome), one of the films set in Rome

Un americano a Roma: The Itinerary of Movies Set in Rome

An American in Rome – 1954: directed by Steno, is a costume satire of post-war Italy. Alberto Sordi interprets Nando Mericoni, Trastevere‘s young boy ridiculously obsessed with all that is American. The location included in the itinerary of films in Rome is that of the Colosseum. It is here that the movie begins. In fact, in the initial scene, Nando climbs the Colosseum and threatens to throw himself down if he is not alllowed to reach his dream or going to Kansas. His friends attend the scene and begin to remember the most exhilarating episodes of his young life. Unforgettable scenes are those of the spaghettis or that of road information given in a stingy English.

 

La dolce vita (The sweet life) – 1969: Directed by Federico Fellini who in this film immortalizes the image of a Italy after the end of the war, which after losing its innocence, looks to the American model, with the desire for a life of indulgence and pleasure. The novelist Marcello Rubini (Marcello Mastroianni) tells the story of Rome.
The most famous venues are the Trevi Fountain, in which Anita Ekberg enters and invites Mastroianni to dance by whispering the famous “Marcello come here!”, and Via Veneto, in the past, a symbol of celebrity nightlife. Among the other locations there is also Piazza del Popolo, where the parties attended by Mastroianni took place.

Among the famous films set in Rome there is Il talento di Mr. Ripley (Mr. Ripley’s talent)
Mr. Ripley’s talent – 1999: of the Oscar-winning director Anthony Minghella and taken from the novel by Patricia Highsmith, the film is a psychological thriller played by a great cast. Tom Ripley (Matt Damon), a brilliant but psychopathic man, meets Dickie Greenleaf (Jude Law) and his girlfriend Marge (Gwyneth Paltrow) who escaped in Italy to live with the money of Greenleaf’s father. The latter hires Ripley to bring him back home but after some time, overwhelmed by envy, Ripley ends up killing Greenleaf and assuming his identity. Among the scenes in Rome there are those set in Piazza Navona, at the Roman Forum and the Campidoglio.

Angeli e demoni (Angels and Demons), one of the films set in Rome

Angel and Demionds, set in Rome

Angels and Demons – 2009: Dan Brown’s best-selling film directed by Ron Howard and with Tom Hanks deals with the story of the brilliant professor Robert Langdon who is called to Rome by the Vatican to decipher the symbol delivered together with a threat letter. A symbol that belongs to the Illuminati, a secret society that has in its ranks scientists and artists with the sole aim of destroying the Catholic Church.
The film features some of Rome’s most characteristic places: the Church of Santa Maria della Vittoria (inside it the scene of the shootout between the murderer and the men of the Vatican Gendarmerie was shot); St. Peter’s Square (where Robert Langdon arrives inside a Lancia Delta); Piazza Navona (here there are dangerous chases between the police cars with sirens blaring and the assassin who, when reached, manages to run away leaving behind a trail of blood); Castel Sant’Angelo (within which there are shootings and chases and the area is surrounded by police and helicopters in an attempt to stop the assassin, hidden in the secret); The Pantheon (chosen as the scene of the first horrible crime. On the floor the body of the first killed Cardinal will be found).

Take part in the tour of the Dan Brown’s novel locations!

La grande bellezza (The Great Beauty), one of the last films set in Rome
The Great Beauty – 2013: directed by Paolo Sorrentino, winner of the Oscar 2014 as the best foreign film. He narrates the story of the novelist Jep Gambardella (played by Toni Servillo) who begins to meditate on his life between lounges, terraces, gardens and Roman squares. The film has been shot almost entirely in a decadent and beautiful Rome.

Amongst the breathtaking sceneries that can be seen in our itinery of films set in Rome, there are Villa Medici, Palazzo Barberini, Piazza Navona, Palazzo Pamphilj, Caracalla’s Baths.

You may also be interested

Visiting Rome in 3 days – Our recommended itinerary 
Visiting Rome in 2 days with children – Where to go and what to do 
Trips outside of Rome – What to see and where to go
The Colosseo (Colosseum) – What is it like?

Christmas in Rome – Where to go and what to do

Visiting the Christmas markets in Rome is one of the many things you can do if you are planning to spend the Christmas holidays in the capital. The eternal city is in fact wonderful in all periods of the year, but at Christmas the magic atmosphere created by the markets, the decorations of the shop windows, the lights makes it irresistible.

If you are undecided about what to see or where to go during your Christmas holiday, do not worry: below we will give you some advice to help you to enjoy your holiday without making errors.

THE FIVE THINGS TO DO IN CHRISTMAS IN ROME

 

ADMIRE THE CHRISTMAS TREE AND THE NATIVITY IN PIAZZA SAN PIETRO

Every year from a different country, the wonderful, large and luminous Christmas tree is placed in the centre of the square, next to the obelisk, creating an evocative setting in which to walk.

Moreover you shouldn’t miss in St. Peter’s Square the beautiful nativity set up near the tree, which every year makes the night special.

WATCH THE LIGHTING OF THE LUMINARIES IN VIA DEL CORSO

Among the events that start the Christmas celebrations there is the lighting of the lights in Via del Corso, which changes every year. The lighting is accompanied by the traditional concert of the musical band of the Carabinieri, which proposes classical songs of the Christmas period, but also some military marches.

VISIT THE CHRISTMAS MARKETS IN ROME

Among the Christmas markets in Rome there is the historical one in Piazza Navona, which is set up every year since the last weekend of November until the Epiphany.
The market is based on the theme of the “Befana”, of which you will be able to find figurines and images, as well as socks full of sweets or charcoal. In addition, in the stalls you can find crafts, decorations, sweets, toys, characters of the Nativity scene.
There will also be a traditional carousel and a puppet theater, the classic Nativity scene and much more.

Christmas market of piazza Mazzini
Since the end of November until the Epiphany it offers Chritmas objects and gift ideas (from pashminas to herbal products, from regional gastronomic specialties to wooden products)

Christmas craft market of Cinecittà
Here you will find on display the works of more than 30 artisans specialized in various techniques: colored fabrics, papier-mâché, ceramics, candles, soaps, metals, air chambers, leather, stones, wood and modeling pastes. it will be an opportunity to find a gift idea to put under the tree!
The square of Cinecittà hosts at Christmas stands, concerts and workshops.

SKATE ON THE SKATING TRACK OF CASTEL SANT’ANGELO

Christmas in Rome: skate at Castel Sant’Angelo
Skating together with relatives or friends in one in the breathtaking scenery of Castel Sant’Angelo will be an unforgettable experience that you should try.

SEE THE EXHIBITION OF THE 100 NATIVITY SCENES IN PIAZZA DEL POPOLO

Exhibition of 100 nativity scenes in Rome at Christmas

You will find an exhibition in the “Sale del Bramante”,, on a surface of 350 square meters, of about 200 Nativity scenes built with the most various materials (pasta, cork, clay, rice, shells, …) from all regions of Italy with a large Nativity tradition and from many countries of the world, all made in the name of peace, brotherhood and respect for the values of other religious confessions.