I’ve seen and lived in so many cities but Rome has always stayed with me. Each time I go back, I find it has changed a little bit, but my most-loved places remain… waiting just for me.
Rome is like an open-air museum — you can admire art simply by strolling through the city. For art history lovers, the best way to admire some great masterpieces is to visit churches like Santa Maria del Popolo, San Luigi dei Francesi and Sant’Agostino in Campo Marzio, where Caravaggio's paintings are displayed. There’s also San Pietro in Vincoli where you can admire Michelangelo's Moses.
Of course, you can't miss a visit to the Colosseum or the Imperial Forums. You can admire them from the panoramic terraces of Campidoglio, plus, you’ll have the whole of Rome right at your feet! A visit to the Pincio (within Villa Borghese park) or Gianicolo Hill terraces is a must also for a beautiful view of the entire city.
A walk around the Isola Tiberina (the only island on the Tiber River) is very much worthwhile, as is a walk through the Roman Ghetto — one of the loveliest, most atmospheric areas of Rome. Rich in history, it’s where you can enjoy a traditional Jewish-style fried artichoke named carciofi alla giudìa.
Villa del Priorato di Malta and Giardino degli Aranci
Enjoy a peek of St Peter's Basilica’s green dome through the keyhole of the door that leads to the villa, then get to the nearby il giardino degli Aranci where you can enjoy the most stunning views of Rome, especially at sunset.
The Magic Door in Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II
Originally this was one of five doors at the Villa Palombara, owned by the Marquis Massimiliano Palombara. According to legend, the alchemist Francesco Giuseppe Borri performed many experiments to transform materials into gold. One day he was seen disappearing through the door, leaving behind gold straws and a sheet of paper with magic symbols containing the secret of the Philosopher's Stone. Massimiliano Palombara had the symbols on the sheet engraved on the doors, hoping that one day, somebody would be able to decipher them.
Not frequented by tourists, this neighbourhood, founded in 1915, is an unexpected sight to see within the Eternal City. Bizarre and populated by fairies and mythological characters, you’ll love the enchanted little villas that will no doubt remind you of something out of a fairy tale.
Via Niccolò Piccolomini
Perfectly aligned with St Peter's Basilica, begin walking in the direction of the dome and keep your eyes fixed on it (preferably from the middle of the road but watch out for cars!). You’ll notice that the closer you get, the smaller the dome will appear, and if you do this in reverse, well, it will appear to be getting larger! A fun little optical illusion that really is amazing.
When I want to eat some traditional dishes (and don’t want to cook 😊) I opt for the flavours of home…
Osteria da Fortuna, Campo de’ Fiori
Enjoy delicious home-made pasta including, of course, my favourite... carbonara!
Dishing out Roman specialities, this rustic and atmospheric restaurant is well known for its pasta ‘Cacio e Pepe’. Do enjoy!
Iconic and a must-try, Sora Lella offers all the traditional dishes of Rome in a friendly family atmosphere. Every visit makes me feel like a child again, where memories of Sunday lunches come flooding back. It’s truly authentic and the best!
Bar del Fico
Just a two-minute walk from the centre of Piazza Navona, Bar del Fico offers the perfect balance of both a lively and relaxed atmosphere, plus it’s great during the day and at night.
A beautiful rooftop bar and the perfect place to treat yourself to a gorgeous drink, it overlooks the Colosseum, making for an ideal spot to relax and have fun.
The Sanctuary Eco Retreat
It’s all good vibes here with gentle electro-house music, great food and exotic cocktails from all over the world.
Well, I hope you enjoyed my tips and that they help make for a very special trip to Rome. You never know, you might just find your all-new favourite destination… when in Rome!