All roads lead to Rome! Do they? Well, they did. All secondary cities in the Roman Empire had roads connecting them to Rome. However, these cities did not have roads that connected them to each other. This shows how important the city of Rome was to the Roman Empire.
With a history spanning over 2,500 years, Rome is one of the oldest cities in the world. The story of how the majestic city was built has various different accounts. A popular and interesting account is that it was founded by Romulus, who was raised by a she-wolf.
The city was established in the 8th century BC by merging several villages together. Rome was the capital of the Roman Empire. The mighty city of Rome was ruled by various Roman emperors. It is the place where the colossal Roman Empire grew from.
With its 2,500 years of history, Rome has been a center of power, politics, culture and development since its inception. Most importantly, there are many affordable activities to do in Rome.
Affordable Activities to do in Rome
Being one of the oldest cities in the world, Rome has a lot of things to see. These vary from monuments, museums to palaces and religious buildings. The city is also known for its delicious cuisine and vibrant atmosphere.
All these facts have contributed in making Rome an attractive destination for tourists from around the globe. The city is actually the third most visited city in Europe and the fourteenth worldwide.
The city has a lot to offer. There are many activities you can enjoy. Some are expensive, some are not. To allow you to plan a nice vacation on budget, we have made you a list of the affordable activities to do in Rome:
- Visit The Colosseum
- Appreciate Ancient Monuments at The Roman Forum
- Start Your Vatican Trip at St. Peter’s Square
- Admire St. Peter’s Basilica
- Explore The Vatican Museum
- Toss a Coin (or Two) at Trevi Fountain
- Visit The Pantheon
- Relax at Piazza Novana
- Admire Art at The Church of San Luigi dei Francesi
- Stroll Around Trastevere
- Get a Panoramic View from Gianicolo Hill
- Shop at Porta Portese
- Climb the Spanish Stairs
- Check Galleria Borghese and the Borghese Gardens
- Hike the Ancient Appian Way
- Enjoy Campo de’ Fiori
- Enjoy Tranquility at Aventine Hill
- Peak from the Secret Keyhole in the Aventino
- Stop at the Capitolini Museum
- Appreciate Santa Maria della Vittoria
Visit the Colosseum
One of the affordable activities to do in Rome is visit The Colosseum. It is the city’s most iconic attraction. The Colosseum or Flavian Amphitheatre was built in 80 AD. It was inaugurated by one hundred days of continuous, bloody games, including gladiatorial combats and animal fights.
The Colosseum could accommodate up to 80,000 spectators to watch the games held at the theater that usually ended in death. These were usually attended by the Roman Emperors themselves.
The Colosseum was built as a gift to the people of Rome. They had to pay no fees to enter and their seats were arranged according to nobility. The great Amphitheater has 80 arched entrances, so spectators could enter easily as they came to watch gladiator combat, chariot race, animal fights, and odd sacrifices in the arena.
As you walk through the Colosseum galleries, you will be able to almost hear the roaring chants of the spectators cheering the gladiators in their battles.
The Colosseum is one of the most iconic landmarks not just in Rome but in the entire world. Your trip to the ancient city won’t be complete without a visit to the Colosseum. The site is open for visitors all week long from 10:30 am to 7:15 pm. However, the last admission is at 6:15 pm.
There is an entry ticket of €12 per adult. If you are going with children, there are no entry fees for kids under 18 years old. The price of the ticket makes visiting the Clolosseum one of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
The Colosseum is visited by 8 million people annually, so entry lines are usually very long. Save yourself the hassle and get a skip-the-line ticket to have a smooth entry.
The tickets purchased at the Colosseum allow you entry for two consecutive days. They also give you two entrances; one to the Colosseum and the other to the Roman Forum. The two sites are of the key landmarks of the majestic city of Rome.
Appreciate Ancient Monuments at The Roman Forum
Built 500 years before Christ, the Roman Forum was the place where religious and public life took place in ancient Rome. It is located between Piazza Venezia and the Colosseum. The forum has an interesting story of how it came to existence.
The area on which this grand monument is built was originally full of swamps. One of the first sewage systems in the world, the Cloaca Maxima, was constructed in the 6th century B.C. to drain the area by carrying water from the Forum to the River Tiber.
Under the rule of the Roman Empire, life was centered at the forum. Many edifices were located here, including the courts, temples, markets, and meeting places. After the 7th century, the buildings fell into ruins. Churches and fortresses were built amidst the ancient remains.
After the fall of the Roman Empire, the Forum was forgotten. The original monuments and ruins were buried deep under. The location of the Forum was known in the 16th century but it was not until the 20th centuries that systematic excavations brought the ancient buildings to light from under a 10-meter layer of earth and rubble.
The Roman Forum is full of historical sights. We advise you to hire a tour guide to be able to know the details about what you are looking at. However, if you prefer to tour alone, keep reading this section of the article to know about the monuments to keep an eye for.
The first point of interest is Via Sacra; this is the main street of ancient Rome. It links the Piazza del Campidoglio to the Colosseum. There is also the Arch of Titus which is a triumphal arch that was erected to memorialize the victory of Rome over Jerusalem.
Another interesting monument is the Arch of Septimius Severus. This arch was built in 203 AD to commemorate the third anniversary of Septimius Severus as the emperor.
Of great interest is the Temple of Antoninus and Faustina, being constructed in the 2nd century, the temple sets itself apart as the best preserved temple in the Roman Forum. The Curia where the Senate met to make administrative decisions is also worth a visit.
Still the most important building in the Forum is the Basilica of Maxentius and Constantine;. Even though it is mostly in ruins nowadays, its size suggests that it was a key building in the arena.
A visit to Rome would never be complete without taking the time to stop at the Roman Forum. A walk around it would give you a glimpse of what life in ancient Rome was like.
For a good experience at the Forum, make sure to wear comfortable shoes as the terrain of the arena is uneven. Dress according to the weather, the Forum can get very cold in winter. In summer, make sure to wear a hat and avoid going at noon.
If you are going there with a kid/kids, avoid taking a stroller with you as only small parts of the arena are paved. Make sure to take some small snacks to hand your kids as food is not available at the site. Picnics are also not allowed, but there won’t be a problem with handing your kids some snacks.
The trip is interesting even for kids, just make sure that they do not climb over the monuments as it is strictly prohibited.
The Roman Forum is open for visitors daily from 8:30 a.m. to an hour before sunset. The best time to go there is either right at the opening time or two hours before closing. These are the times when the crowd of visitors is less than usual.
The site is so close to the Colosseum, they both could be included in a one day trip in Rome. They are also included in one ticket only. This makes visiting both monuments one of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
The Vatican is the only state in the world that’s inside of another country. This independent state is one of the most important religious sites in the world.
Start Your Vatican Trip at St. Peter’s Square
Located in front of the Vatican state, St. Peter’s Square is an iconic place where various momentous events have taken place. The circular square is adorned with two sets of colonnades that frame it. Statues of different religious figures and previous popes are placed on the columns.
The centerpiece is an obelisk that vibrates an Egyptian vibe rather than a Roman one. This imposing obelisk was actually taken from Nero’s Circus. At the far end of the square is the St. Peter’s Basilica where papal ceremonies take place. The enormous square can be used as a starting point to your exploration trip of the Vatican.
Checking brilliant art works, people-watching, and deciding where to go can all be done at this beautiful square. Spending some time at the square is completely free which makes it one of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
Admire St. Peter’s Basilica
Originated in 349 AD, St. Peter’s Basilica is most probably the most recognizable religious building in the whole world. It was built when Constantine gave his orders to build a basilica over the tomb of St. Peter, the first Pope. That church was then torn down to make way for the current one.
St. Peter’s Basilica stands over 18,000 square yards, making it the largest church in the world. The current St. Peter’s Church has been located at the end of St. Peter’s square since 1626.
St. Peter’s Basilica is not just a church, it is visited by believers as well as non-believers. They all come to appreciate the majestic architecture of the church. The site contains many important monuments and sights not to be missed.
The first thing that would catch your eyes upon your entrance is a huge canopy at the end of the nave. The canopy, designed by the master of the Italian Baroque Gianlorenzo Bernini, is placed to highlight the main altar reserved only for the Pope.
Another key monument at the church is Michelangelo’s the Pieta. The unequaled work of art is located in the first chapel to the right of its entrance. It is Michelangelo’s most touching work as it represents the Virgin Mary holding the body of Jesus after his death in her lap with great tenderness and composure.
The Pieta was commissioned by Cardinal Jean Biléres de Lagraulas in 1498, for his own tomb. This masterpiece was completed by Michelangelo in only two years. This exceptional piece of art stays unparalleled until today.
St. Peter’s Statue on the nave inside of the Basilica. The statue built in the end of the 1200s is made of bronze and portrays St. Peter sitting on a marble chair. With his left hand he holds the keys of Heaven, his typical attribute, whilst giving a blessing with his right.
Catholic pilgrims come to the church to either touch or kiss the statue’s right feet and ask the saint for his blessing. Each year, on St. Peter’s death anniversary on June 29th, the statue is dressed and crowned with a tiara as a way to remind people of the first Pope in history.
However, the most impressive piece inside of the church is definitely its Dome. It is the biggest Dome in Rome till this day. With its exceptional height and beautiful design, the Dome of Saint Peter’s Basilica unmistakably marks the skyline of Rome.
The Dome was designed by Michelangelo as a gift to the church. However, he died before seeing it complete. The construction of the dome was completed by Giacomo Della Porta and Domenico Fontana in 1590.
You can visit St. Peter’s Basilica daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. between April and September, and every day from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. from October to March. The church is free to visit, there is no entry fee. This makes the visit one of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
Bear in mind, there is usually a long line to enter the church but it moves fast. Still, you can buy a skip the line ticket if you do not like to wait. St. Peter’s Basilica is an active church, meaning Mass services are held daily at the church. Make sure to follow the stringent dress code of the church; no short skirts, hats or bare shoulders.
However, if you, like many other tourists, would like to go trekking to the top of the dome, there is a fee. Even if you choose to climb the dome, the trip is still one of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
For 6 euros (about $7.50), you can climb the 551 steps to the summit; and for a fee of 8 euros (about $10), you can take an elevator to a terrace where you’ll climb just 323. Just note that this activity is not suitable for anyone that is claustrophobic.
Explore the Vatican Museum
The Vatican Museum houses one of the most famous attractions of the city, the Sistine Chapel. The Chapel’s construction was completed in 1481. It gained its fame for its Renaissance frescoes by Michelangelo. The museum contains many more treasures, including the spiral staircase and the Raphael Rooms.
The museum is better explored with a tour guide. A much cheaper option is to get audio guides which are around 7 euros, or read up on the museums website before visiting.
When you visit the museum, plan to be there for several hours. This is one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. The entrance fee is very affordable. The prices are €17 ($19.91) per adult and €8 ($9.37) per child.
You can also get the skip the line tickets from the museum’s official website. The museum is open Monday to Saturday from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm., with final entry at 4:00 pm. On the last Sunday of each month, the Vatican Museum lets visitors enter for free. However, that day is always very crowded.
There are a number of rules to be followed during your visit. First, Make sure to adhere to the dress code; no short skirts, shorts or bare shoulders. Second, photos are strictly not allowed. So, do not bring your camera with you. Finally, keep quiet, do not speak loudly. Only whispers are allowed.
Toss a Coin (or Two) at Trevi Fountain
Trevi Fountain or Fontana di Trevi, Rome’s largest fountain, was built in 1762. It was designed by Nicola Salvi featuring four sculptors. The fountain’s basin features many statues. Its centerpiece is a statue of the sea god Oceanus (Neptune) sculpted by Pietro Bracci.
The statue depicts Oceanus riding his chariot pulled by Tritons and taming several Hippocampus. Behind the fountain, a large baroque palace contributes much to the charm of the place.
Trevi Fountain was built by travertine stone, a mineral made of calcium carbonate formed from spring waters, especially hot springs. This is the same stone used to build the Colosseum. It is believed that the source of the stone was the city of Tivoli, around 22 miles from Rome.
In 1960, the Fountain gained unprecedented fame as it appeared in the romantic comedy La Dolce Vita. The Fountain underwent restoration by Fendi, the extravagant fashion house. Multi-million Euros were spent in restoration, and the site reopened after restoration in 2015.
Legend has it if you toss a coin in the fountain, you will return to Rome again. And if you toss two coins, you will return to Rome and fall in love with a Roman. Adding a third coin will ensure that you marry your love. Throwing coins on Trevi Fountain is very popular among tourists.
Around €1.5 million ($1.7 million) is collected every year from the attraction. The money you throw in the fountain does not go to waste. It is usually given to a Catholic charity to help Rome’s poor and homeless.
The site is usually overflowing with tourists from around the world. To avoid the crowds and have a better experience at the monument, try to go either very early in the morning or at night when the crowds disperse. The best time to visit is actually at night when lights illuminate the fountain.
The Fountain at night offers a romantic atmosphere to its visitors. One of the most romantic things to do is to propose to your partner there. It is a dream of many people. However, if you actually plan to do so, go at a time when the place is least crowded.
Trevi Fountain has no entry fees, it is one of the free activities to do in Rome. The site is open 24/7 for all visitors. Visiting the site does not take long, plan to be there for half an hour or so. And once again try to go either very early in the morning.
Visit the Pantheon
The Pantheon, built in 125 A.D. by the Romans, is the monument with the greatest number of records. It is the best preserved building, the biggest brick dome in the history of architecture, and the forerunner of all modern places of worship.
It is not a surprise to know that the Pantheon is the most imitated of all ancient buildings. The name, “the Pantheon”, means a temple for all the gods. However, the place is actually a burial place for Rome’s kings and other prominent figures. The Pantheon is definitely a must-see.
The location of the Pantheon was not chosen haphazardly. The temple is located at a legendary place in the city’s history. According to a Roman legend, it is the very place where the founder of Rome at his death was seized by an eagle and taken off into the skies with the Gods.
In the ancient Roman Empire, temples were sacred places, forbidden for the public. Only priests and vestals could enter. The Pantheon represents a true social and cultural revolution. It was the first place of worship that was open to everyone.
Once you step into this grandeur building, you will feel tiny compared to the huge surrounding. The Pantheon’s most distinctive feature is the hole in its roof, known as the Oculus. The hole is designed in the ceiling as the only source of light inside of the Pantheon.
The Pantheon has remarkably thick columns in its entrance. The columns, unlike others in Rome, are not decorative. They support the structure of the entrance. Try also to observe the peculiar round shape of the structure.
After visiting the Pantheon, do not forget to go for some gelato. There are to gelaterie located near the monument. These are Gelato Giolitti and Della Palma. Gelato is an all-natural dessert. So, stay away from any gelato flavors that have electric colors.
The site has no entrance fee which makes the visit one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. It is open on the weekdays from 8.30 am to 7.30 pm. On Sunday, the opening hours are from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm.
The site is closed on 1st January, 1st May and the 25th December. When you are visiting the Pantheon, make sure to dress modestly as it is a functioning Christian church. This usually means no bare shoulders, no short shorts or super mini-skirts.
Relax at Piazza Navona
This is another one of the affordable activities to do in Rome! For a relaxing afternoon, visit the baroque gem Piazza Navona. Built in the 15th century, it is one of the most popular squares in Rome. Piazza Navona displays the best baroque arts in Rome.
The square has four different fountains, the centerpiece is the beautiful Baroque fountain, Fontana dei Fiumi. Designed by Borromini, the fountain represents the four greatest rivers; personifying the Nile, Ganges, Danube, and Rio de la Plata. Each of these representations is accompanied by the plants and animals of their original region.
Nowadays, Piazza Navona is filled with Romans, tourists, street artists, souvenir kiosks, cafés, and during December, one of Rome’s best Christmas markets. The Square is lined with different cafes, bars, and restaurants.
There are many street vendors and artists around the square. You can go there for some coffee or gelato. For a nice spot to grab something to eat, make time to stop for lunch or dinner at Ristorante Santa Lucia. You can enjoy delicious Roman dishes.
If you are visiting in summer, try to visit the site in the evening to enjoy a refreshing breeze while enjoying a drink or a nice conversation. However, in winter, go in the afternoon so the weather is nice and warm.
Admire Art at the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi
Are you a fan of Caravaggio’s art? The Church of San Luigi dei Francesi is the attraction for you!
The Church of San Luigi dei Francesi has three masterpieces of Caravaggio. It is not just that, the church actually has one of his famous paintings, “The Calling of St. Matthew”. The other two are “Saint Matthew and the Angel” and “The Martyrdom of Saint Matthew.”
For an unprecedented experience, make sure to have some coins with you to feed the meters in front of the paintings. This will briefly illuminate the paintings so their details are clearer. The outside of the church is also fascinating. The church’s Franciscan garden has a view of the eternal city of Rome.
The church is located between the Pantheon and Piazza Navona. You can enter the church for free. Because there is no entry fee, visiting the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi is one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. The monument is open daily from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm. It then closes for lunch and reopens again at 3:00 pm till 7:00 pm. However, on Thursday, the church closes after lunch for the rest of the day.
Stroll Around Trastevere
Trastevere, a neighborhood where time freezes, is located across River Tiber. Once you cross the river, you will feel a hip and bohemian vibe. The neighborhood is one of the few places where you can experience authentic Roman life. The streets of Trastevere are narrow and cobblestoned. The district is full of boutiques that sell jewelry, perfumes, and handicrafts.
The neighborhood is full of various attractions that are worth paying a visit. The most popular is Piazzi di Santa Maria Square. It is the heart of the neighborhood. The square comprises a church and a fountain. The area around the square is the meeting place for the residents of the neighborhood. There are many restaurants and cafes in the area where you can sit and enjoy the area.
There is also Villa Farnesina, a 16th-century mansion that has many art works. The place is not very popular among tourists yet. But it is definitely worth a visit. The villa is surrounded by lovely symmetrical gardens.
The interiors of the place are decorated in Renaissance style. The site is open daily from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm, except for Sunday. There is an admission fee of €9 ($10.57). The site is perfect for a visit if you want to go somewhere that is not very crowded.
Lastly, the main attraction of the neighborhood of Trastevere is the Basilica Santa Maria. It is the oldest Marian church in Rome. The basilica has a medieval character due to the many authentic mosaics in its interior. Another ancient church in the neighborhood is the Basilica of Santa Cecilia. The church houses many 13th-century frescoes by Pietro Cavallini.
Visiting the neighborhood is a one day trip. It is very hard to do something else on the same day. The district has something to offer for all types of travelers. Whether you are traveling alone, with a lover, with friends, or with family, the neighborhood should be included in your itinerary.
Trastevere is open for tourists 24/7 with no entry fee. However, you can book a paid guided tour if you want to know historical insights about the different monuments in the neighborhood.
Get a Panoramic View from Gianicolo Hill
One cannot visit Trastevere and ignore Gianicolo Hill. It is located west of River Tiber. The hill is the highest point in Rome. Climbing it will give you a panoramic view of the eternal city. You will be able to spot famous attractions, such as St Peter’s Basilica and the Spanish Steps. You want to enjoy the view but do not like to climb? No worries, you can take a car or Vespa to reach the top of the hill effortlessly.
Gianicolo Hill is a popular place for couples in Rome. They go to enjoy the sunrise/sunset and tranquility. But you do not have to be in love to enjoy this amazing view. So, whether you are visiting alone or with a lover, everyone can enjoy the breathtaking view from the hill. The hill is open for visitors all the time. It is free to access. Hiking or climbing the hill is one of many affordable activities to do in Rome.
Make sure to wear something comfortable and good walking shoes. Also, do not forget to bring water with you. You can also bring some snacks to eat while you are climbing or sitting on the hill, enjoying the perfect view.
Shop at Porta Portese
Are you a fashionista? This event is just for you!
Porta Portese is a Sunday market that takes place from around 6:00 am to 2:00 pm in Trastevere. The main focus of the sellers is clothes. They sell both new and used pieces.
The event is held at the Porta Portese, around the streets Via Portuense and Via Ippolito Nievo. Sellers have everything from clothing to small memoirs and antiques. You can stroll around the market as you might find some interesting goods to buy. But even if you do not want to buy anything, watching the events take place is an experience in itself.
When you visit Porta Portese, keep an eye on your valuables. The event is usually so crowded and that attracts pickpockets. If you like any of the goods displayed, make sure to haggle like any local would do. The cheap prices at Porta Portese make shopping one of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
Climb the Spanish Stairs
The Spanish Steps, located at the Piazza di Spagna, were constructed in 1725. The 135 steps were built to bridge the gap between the Piazza di Spagna and the Piazza Trinita dei Monti.
The Spanish Steps are most glorious during springs when they are lined by blooming azaleas. Each step features a wide stone ledge and is framed by stone walls. The area was a popular place for artists, painters and poets. They were drawn to the site for its design and elegance.
The place still attracts people until today for its grandeur and location. The site is free to visit. It is open all day, everyday. The Spanish Steps are perfect for an afternoon sit around. Sit there, enjoy a gelato, and maybe do some people watching.
If you are feeling sporty, climb till the top of the stairs for an amazing view of the whole area. Climbing the Spanish Steps and enjoying the view from them are some of the affordable activities to do in Rome.
Near Piazza di Spagna, Rome’s most fashionable shopping street is located. These include big designer shops, such as Giorgio Armani, Valentino, Gucci, Prada and more. Even if you are not planning to buy anything, window shopping is a great option. Climbing the Spanish Steps (or just sitting there) is a must do activity on any Rome trip.
Check Galleria Borghese and the Borghese Gardens
Galleria Borghese is situated on the Borghese villa complex. The villa was commissioned by Cardinal Scipione Borghese in the 17th century. The Borghese villa was built for two reasons; as a party villa and to house the Borghese art collection.
At Galleria Borghese, you will find a brilliant collection of baroque art. The collections at the galleria include Antonio Canova’s sculpture of Napoleon Bonaparte’s sister as Venus Victrix, Bernini’s Apollo and Daphne, and Caravaggio’s self-portrait as Bacchus.
Other art works at the galleria enclose paintings, sculptures, mosaics, and reliefs. The Galleria Borghese is open for visitors 6 days a week, from Tuesday to Monday. Times to visit are divided into slots; these are 9:00 am to 11:00 am, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, 1:00 to 3:00 pm, 3:00 to 5:00 pm, or 5:00 to 7:00 pm.
On Thursdays there is also a 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm slot. You need to book prior to your visit and choose the time slot you prefer. Tickets are for €15 ($17.56) for adults and €10 ($11.71) for children. Tickets can be purchased from the site’s official website.
After visiting the gallery, take some time to walk around the Borghese Gardens. It is an English-style landscape garden that has many ponds and walking paths. The parkland is made absolutely beautiful with orange trees and blooming flowers. There are many playgrounds for children and on the weekends, pony rides are available.
Visiting Galleria Borghese and the Borghese gardens is one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. This attraction is also suitable for all family members; adults and children. Just make sure to wear comfortable attire and walking shoes.
Hike the Ancient Appian Way
The Ancient Appian Way or Appian Antica as Roman say has a history that dates back to 312 B.C. The road has witnessed many Roman military marches. It was the road that connected ancient Rome to the rest of Italy. Archeologists have found that it went all the way to Brindisi on the Adriatic Coast of modern-day Puglia. However, nowadays, it does not lead to any particular place anymore.
The site, these days, is for a good walk among the various monuments. And as the saying goes “when in Rome do as Romans do,” go for a walk in this historical location. Also, the place is very suitable for a picnic. When you go, make sure to be wearing good walking shoes. Take some water with you and some snacks for your picnic.
Going for a walk at Appian Antica is one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. The site is free to enter and is open 24/7. However, it is much better to go during the day as the area becomes a bit unsafe at night.
Enjoy Campo de’ Fiori
Another popular attraction to be visited in Rome is Campo de’ Fiori. It is a square that once was a field of flowers. The square was paved in 1456. Campo de’ Fiori became popular because it is surrounded by prominent buildings. The square has also witnessed public execution which is commemorated by the remarkable statue of Giordano Bruno, the centerpiece of the square.
Every morning from Monday to Saturday, A fresh products market is held at the square. Fruit, vegetables, fish, and meat are all sold at this market. The products are of high quality and very affordable prices. It is one of the city’s most popular markets. Even if you do not want to buy anything, the market is a good place to experience authentic Italian culture.
At night, the square is one of the best places to sit and enjoy your evening. Near the square, there is a wide variety of restaurants, cocktail bars, and terraces, and numerous pizzerias, cafes and gelaterias. However, the prices at those restaurants are a bit high. You can visit the site either to eat or just to walk around and enjoy the brilliant architecture of the place. You might also enjoy doing both.
Walking around Campo de’ Fiori is one of many affordable activities to do in Rome. The area is open 24/7 and is free to visit.
Enjoy Tranquility at Aventine Hill
Looking to spend a quiet day in crowded Rome? Aventine Hill is the perfect spot for that!
The Aventine Hill is one of the seven hills on which Ancient Rome was built. Nowadays, the hill is calm and quiet. It is the place where you can enjoy your time away from the downtown noise. During your stroll, you will have a panoramic view of the whole city.
In the Imperial Era, the hill was an aristocratic residential place in the past. It also became the new city center because of the little port it had on the Tiber. Nowadays, the hill is an important attraction for tourists for its beautiful gardens and ancient churches. The hill possesses Rome’s municipal rose garden, where the international rose trials take place every year in May.
Another reason to visit the Aventine Hill is that it has many important religious constructions. These include Basilica di Santa Sabina all’Aventino, the oldest Roman basilica in Rome. Another is Santa Prisca, which was built over a temple. Yet, another the the priory church of the Priory of the Knights of Malta, Santa Maria del Priorato.
Allow yourself at least half a day at the hill to get a chance to enjoy all of the sights and monuments it offers. At the Aventine Hill, you can enjoy tranquility and a panoramic view of the magical city of Rome for free. Going up the hill is one of various affordable activities to do in Rome.
Peak from the Secret Keyhole in the Aventino
While you are at Hill Aventine, take the chance to find the secret keyhole that has a mesmerizing view of St. Peter’s Basilica!
This is not just one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. It is also a mesmerizing experience. On Aventine Hill, there is a green, nondescript door that leads to the Priory of the Knights of Malta. Find the door and impress your traveling mates! A cheating tip to easily locate it, you will find a queue of people waiting right in front of the door. Peak through the keyhole. You will be rewarded with a miniature view of St Peter’s Basilica framed by green, leafy trees.
Stop at the Capitolini Museum
The Capitolini Museum is the first museum in the world. The museum holds a bronze Capitoline World, Rome’s symbol. Rome adopted the wolf as its symbol because according to the myth the wolf nursed the half-wolf, half-god founders of the city, twins Romulus and Remus. The museum is flooded with Roman emperors, from Augustus to Caligula. It also possesses many paintings and statues.
The museum is open for visitors daily from 9:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. There is an entry fee of €15 ($17.58) per person. The entry fee is not expensive at all. This makes visiting the Capitolini Museum one of the affordable activities to do in Rome. The museum has really good in-house restaurants where you can have lunch for a very affordable price. You can also have an amazing view of the eternal city from the museum’s roof top. Even though the museum is not very popular, it has really good reviews.
Santa Maria della Vittoria
Santa Maria della Vittoria is a basilica that was built in the 17th century. The basilica was structured to commemorate the victory of Emperor Ferdinand II at the battle of White Mountain. The church is somewhat small and the amount of natural light it gets is little. To provide light in the church, candles are lit everywhere. Candles light creates a special atmosphere in the church.
The interior of the church is extensively decorated. One of the most notable parts of the church is the Cornaro Chapel that houses the “Ecstasy of Saint Teresa”, a sculpture by Bernini. This figure is considered to be a sculptural masterpiece of the Baroque period.
Even though the church is considered small compared to others in Rome, it has become very popular since its appearance in the “Angels & Demons” novel by Dan Brown. You can visit the church any day for free. The visiting hours start from 8:30 am to 12:00 pm. Then, it closes for lunch. The church opens again at 3:30 pm till 6:00 pm. Santa Maria della Vittoria is an active church. So, make sure to dress modestly when you visit.
These are 20 of the affordable activities to do in Rome. Add them, some or all, to your itinerary and enjoy cost efficient vacation.
Also check: Free Things to do in Florence, Italy