4 Sites in Rome You Should Never Miss

Although I’ve been traveling the world for a long time, it’s always a pleasure to go back to Rome. You could spend weeks, maybe years, visiting something new and never get bored: archaeological sites, peaceful parks, famous architecture, and world-class museums. And to finish the day, you can just sit in one of the many squares, with a drink and a guitar at your side. It’s impossible to compress what to see in Rome in a short article, but the good thing is that you’ll know what not to miss when you visit.

The Colosseum

Since you already know everything about it, I’ll add just a couple of tidbits of information: the Colosseum was a stadium with a movable fabric roof, called a velarium. Yes, it was possible to close it or to leave it open according to the weather, thanks to the work of a team of sailors! Shows in the Colosseum were free for everybody, and it could seat up to 80,000 people—not bad for being 2,000 years old.

Capitoline Hill

At the top of the Capitoline Hill are the Capitoline Museums, a 600-year-old exhibition where it’s possible to go through the history of Rome since its origins. The square was designed by Michelangelo, with the creation of a new palace, the Palazzo Nuovo, symmetrical to the original Palazzo dei Conservatori, as well as a twelve-pointed star in the square designed centuries later in 1940. In the middle of the square is the equestrian statue of the Emperor Marcus Aurelius. From the terrace at the back, it’s possible to have the best view over the Roman Forum.

The Pantheon

The dome of the Pantheon is a masterpiece of ancient engineering. Considering its size and the materials available at that time, it’s still the largest dome in the world made only of concrete. Originally a Roman temple, the Pantheon has been used since the 7th century as a Catholic church, Santa Maria della Rotonda.  What’s more, the last Italian Kings and the world-famous painter Raphael are buried here.

Urban legend has it that it doesn’t rain inside the Pantheon because of warm air rising through the hole at the top. That’s not true, and you’ll see for yourself, even if it’s not raining, as there are several gutters to drain rainwater in the floor.

Vatican Museums

Though for locals there’s no difference between Rome and Vatican City, the Vatican Museums are actually part of Vatican City. You can visit them in one day if you’re short on time, but you’ll need to rush through them at that. They’re full of masterpieces, and you’ll have the opportunity to admire the Sistine Chapel. If you’re on a budget, the last Sunday of each month has free admission. Be prepared, however, to stand in line for hours.

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