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Rome's Top 20

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Rome is both a modern, bustling city and an ancient open air museum. You can walk in the footsteps of emperors, Have coffee in Renaissance piazzas and see contemporary art all in one afternoon.
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00184 Rome, Metropolitan City of Rome, Italy
No matter how many postcards you've seen of Rome's iconic Colosseum, you just don't get it until you pass beneath its crumbling arches. Built by Emperor Vespasian in 72 C.E., the huge amphitheater held 50,000 spectators and marked its...
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Summit the most important of Rome’s seven hills and you will have the same views Emperors Augustus, Tiberius and Domitian did 2,000 years ago. From one side you can look out over the Circus Maximus, where chariot races were once held, and from the...
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Largo della Salara Vecchia, 5/6, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
The Roman Forum is where ancient Rome began. The sprawling archaeological park gives us just a hint of what the Roman Empire once was—a dominant and diverse society. The Forum itself was the political, social, religious, and commercial focal...
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Piazza del Campidoglio, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Stand at the feet of the Marcus Aurelius statue in this Michelangelo-designed, elliptical-shaped Renaissance piazza, and you will be at what was once the center of the world (or at least the Roman Empire). Today this space, which is surrounded by...
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Piazza della Rotonda, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
This 1st-century wonder will take your breath away. Not only is it one of the city's most ancient sites, it's been in continuous use for centuries. Originally built as a private temple, today it is a Catholic church and the resting place of...
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Piazza Campo de' Fiori, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Like all outdoor markets in Rome, Campo de' Fiori is a bustling social center where locals push past throngs of tourists to complete their errands. Every morning you can find nonni shopping for produce with their grandchildren, feisty butchers...
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Lungotevere Castello, 50, 00193 Roma RM, Italy
Originally constructed as a mausoleum for Emperor Hadrian in the middle of the 2nd century, the striking circular monument has had many functions over the centuries. Climb to the top and be rewarded with a breathtaking view over Rome. See if you...
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Located across the Tiber River from the Centro Storico, Trastevere is a kaleidoscope of ivy-covered buildings, complicated Italian history, and bombastic nightlife. The heart of the neighborhood is Piazza Santa Maria, a large square where street...
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Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5, 00197 Roma RM, Italy
The Galleria Borghese, which is set in the large public Villa Borghese park, was born in the 16th century as the collection of Scipione Borghese, a powerful Cardinal and nephew to Pope Paul V. The Cardinal amassed an enormous number of ancient...
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This ornate private palace is the perfect place to live out your very own royal dreams. Wander through a colossal private art collection—said to be one of the largest in the world—of lavish furnishings, sculptures and paintings in almost always...
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Viale Vaticano, 00165 Roma RM
There is a staggering amount of artwork on display here. It is said that if you stood at each piece for just one minute, it would take you four years to see everything. Created by Pope Julius II in the early 16th century, the museums have expanded...
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Via Guido Reni, 4/a, 00196 Roma RM, Italy
Maxxi, Rome’s first major contemporary art museum, cost 150 million and took renowned architect Zaha Hadid 10 years to complete. The result—a vast, bold space with exhibits on architecture and art—proves that modern Rome can produce masterpieces,...
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Piazza di S. Luigi de' Francesi, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
In 1589, the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi became the official church of Rome’s French community, and with true Bourbon flair, the church's decorations are a celebration of France's power and wealth, with gilded stucco, lavish...
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While the showy Santa Maria Maggiore might get more attention (it's a favorite of Pope Francis), the much smaller—but still lovely—Santa Prassede across the street will reward you with magnificent golden mosaics from the medieval era in the Saint...
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Via del Corso, Roma RM, Italy
This broad street serves as the spine to Tridente, Rome’s main shopping district. Bound by the via Babuino and via Ripetta and intersected by the via Condotti, which begins at the bottom of the Spanish Steps, this is where you will find big...
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Piazza Navona, 00186 Roma RM, Italy
Even with Segway tours rolling through and street performers loudly competing for audiences, the 15th-century Piazza Navona somehow retains a shred of grace and elegance in modern Rome. Calm Renaissance palazzi face the piazza’s centerpiece,...
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Piazza del Quirinale, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
This ornate palace is the official residence of the President of the Republic—and newly open to the public five days a week (closed Mondays and Thursdays). It is one of the largest palaces in the world, with more than 1,000 rooms, and before...
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This kilometer-long cobblestoned street was commissioned by Pope Julius and designed by Bramante in the 16th century. Lined with grand palaces and impressive churches along its wide, straight length, it was a seat of Florentine power in Rome...
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Hop on the metro and in less than an hour you can be at the remarkable archaeological site of Ostia Antica, the harbor city of ancient Rome. Far easier to get to and much less crowded than Pompeii, you can visit similar ruins, mosaics and frescoes...
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Via Appia Antica, 42, 00178 Roma RM, Italy
Leave the hustle and bustle of Rome behind for a sylvan retreat along the Appia Antica. This was once one of the most important Roman roads, connecting the capitol to Brindisi far in the south. Today you can visit catacombs, churches and ruins of...