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Irene Clunie, Short Break Specialist

"Rome is Italy’s bustling capital and is full of life, energy and a touch of Italian eccentricity; with the local Romans adding as much to the sense of theatre as the architecture, sights and sounds. Rome feels alive with history which isn’t surprising given it was the birthplace of an Empire that once stretched as far north as Scotland and as far south as Egypt. A lot of the historical sites from those times still survive today, none more breathtaking than the Colosseum, a stunning Roman amphitheatre right in the centre of town."

Rome at a glance

Rome is truly a unique destination; the whole city is a large open air museum with ancient ruins dotting the landscape to create a literal symphony of past meets present architecture. With a history dating back 2,500 years, Rome is one of the oldest cities in Europe, earning it the title the Eternal City.

Playing a large role in the birthplace of Western civilisation, Rome has long held a place of importance, with beginnings as the capital of the Roman Empire to the modern day seat of the Papacy. Its city centre is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with a number of its iconic attractions topping the list of tourist destinations. The quintessential city break, there is plenty to do, see and experience in Rome.

Perfect if you’re looking for:

  • Historical sightseeing
  • Iconic sights
  • A romantic getaway

Getting around

It is easy to navigate many parts of the city on foot, with the majority of the ancient sites lying to the east of the Tiber River and the Vatican lying to the west. Narrow streets, chaotic traffic and lack of pedestrian zones in some areas can create a compact feel, especially during peak tourist periods. While the seemingly hectic movement of vehicles and people may strike visitors as unappealing, it does lend a certain unique energy and ethos to the experience that is Rome.

Dining in Rome

Adding to the historical splendour of the city is a dining scene not to be missed. World-renowned restaurants and less formal eateries called trattoria offer exceptional, freshly made, local cuisine. Italy is one of the top wine producing countries of the world, making the choice of wines and wine bars plentiful, while side streets and squares, called piazzas, offer up wonderful cafes, perfect for people watching while you enjoy a rich Italian coffee, cappuccino or decadent gelato.

Must-try local dishes:

  • Pizza - in Rome the base is thin and crispy
  • Cacio e pepe: grated Pecorino Romano and cracked black pepper, tossed with spaghetti and olive oil
  • Gelato

Osprey Holidays top tips

Visit the Trevi Fountain after 6pm when the crowds have dissipated from the surrounding narrow streets and you are able to fully admire this amazing Baroque extravaganza which completely overwhelms the tiny piazza.

Get your tailor-made city break itinerary

Osprey Holidays can create a fabulous short break to Rome designed completely around your needs. We can arrange whatever you need, including:

  • All travel and transfers on days of your choice
  • Accommodation from our handpicked range of  Rome hotels, to suit your budget and requirements

Our award-winning team can provide expert advice and recommendations, from general questions to tiny details. Contact us now for your tailor-made itinerary.

Important information
Population 4,316,000
Languages Italian
Currency Euro
Visa Information No visa required for UK citizens
Average temperatures

(monthly highs °C)

Interesting facts

The Roma Pass gets you free or reduced entry to many attractions, as well as three days travel on the city's buses and subway.

Distance from airports
Rome International 23 km
Railway stations
Rome Termini

Things to do in Rome

  • Trevi Fountain: Rome’s largest and most famous fountain; a large baroque artwork which was immortalised in the film ‘La Dolce Vita’.
  • The Colosseum: the symbol of eternal Rome where gladiators fought each other and condemned prisoners fought off hungry lions.
  • Sistine Chapel: Michelangelo’s masterpiece is the highlight of any tour through the Vatican museums.
  • St Peter’s Basilica: admire Michelangelo’s beautiful interior and enjoy the stunning views from the top.
  • Piazza Navona: a vast beautiful piazza, lined with Baroque palaces. The perfect place to enjoy a drink.
  • The Pantheon: a stunning piece of architecture and a spectacular piece of history.
  • Villa Borghese: Rome’s most famous park boasts acres of gardens, flowerbeds, shaded walkways and monuments.
  • Campo de Fiori: by day this square hosts a fruit and vegetable market and by night it is buzzing with locals and visitors enjoying a drink.
  • The Forum: the commercial, political and religious centre of ancient Rome.

Tours and Excursions

Best of Rome Walking Tour

This afternoon tour will introduce you to all the top attractions in Rome's historic centre. Start at the Spanish Steps, throw a coin or two into the iconic Trevi Fountain, see the Roman Pantheon and stroll through the Piazza Navona admiring the Bernini fountains. 

Upgrade to a full day tour to include Palatine Hill, the Colosseum and the Roman Forum.

Vatican Highlights

This skip-the-line tour features all the highlights of Vatican City in a small group, accompanied by a professional guide. Raphael’s Rooms are dedicated to the Renaissance master and his pupils, while the Sistine Chapel is renowned for Michelangelo’s stunning ceiling fresco, The Creation of Adam. Also includes Gallery of Tapestries, Collection of Contemporary Art and St Peter’s Basilica (this may be restricted on Wednesdays due to Papal Audience).

Alternatively, beat the crowds by choosing Early Access, before the museum officially opens, or take an Evening Tour when everyone has left for the day. There are numerous options for visiting The Vatican, in private or as part of a group, so please speak to one of our City Breaks Specialists for details. 

The Colosseum

Rome's most iconic symbol, the Colosseum is the largest amphitheatre ever built. Your expert guide will share details of the often brutal, history of this arena where emperors, gladiators and slaves once stood.

Take a Skip the Line: Colosseum and Roman Forum Tour and avoid the queues to visit the Colosseum’s arena and mid-levels before heading to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill for incredible views of Ancient Rome.

 Exclusive Gladiator Arena- The Colosseum, Palatine Hill and Roman Forum Tour  will give you access to the restricted areas of the Colosseum arena floor. You will step onto the arena floor and learn about the epic battles that took place here. This tour also includes a walk to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.

Crypts and Roman Catacombs Walking Tour

Visit underground Rome, including the vast network of catacombs and the Capuchin Crypt containing the bones of 4000 friars.  Another highlight of the tour is the Basilica of San Martino ai Monti, a 4th century church where stunning frescoes adorn the walls and you can discover the preserved relics of three saints.  

Tivoli Day Trip: Hadrian's Villa & Villa d'Este

Travel by coach to Tivoli, the favoured holiday destination of Roman emperors. Nestled in the Monti Tiburtini hills, this ancient town is home to two UNESCO World heritage sites. Visit Hadrian’s Villa and tour the ruins of this once magnificent estate, including temples and thermal baths. Continue the tour at Villa de’Este, once the lavish Renaissance villa built for the son of Lucrezia Borgia. Take a tour of the gardens and the hundreds of fountains including the impressive Neptune’s fountain.                                                

Pompeii, Amalfi Coast & Positano

In 79 AD Mount Vesuvius erupted, covering the prosperous city of Pompeii in deadly volcanic ash. It is now one of the most important archeological sites in the world. On arrival at Pompeii you will skip the lines and explore the ancient streets accompanied by your knowledgeable guide. The tour then takes you along the stunning Amalfi Coast to the picturesque village of Positano where you can spend time exploring or perhaps enjoy a refreshing limoncello! 


We would be happy to arrange an excursion for you. To discuss options with a member of our knowledgeable team or to book, please contact us on 0131 243 8098.