32 Fun Things to Do in Rome | 2024 (with Photos)

Nataša Obradovic

Nataša Obradovic - Travel Writer

Published: June 30, 2023

Hey there! I'm Natasha, your guide to experiencing the best of Rome. With a deep passion for this vibrant city and backed by my personal adventures, I've curated a list of 32 exciting things to do in Rome complete with stunning photos, ensuring you have an unforgettable trip in 2024.

Piazza Venezia

Rome is one of the most exciting cities in the world, with so much to explore and experience.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or you're visiting Rome as a returning traveler, there are always fun things to do in Rome.

From classic attractions to unique activities, this Travel-Lingual guide will give you plenty of ideas for why you need to experience a dose of 'la dolce vita' with an amazing stay in the Eternal City.

Make sure you add some of these 32 fun things to do in Rome to your list.

Most Recommended Thing to Do

Top Choice Hotel

The St. Regis Rome

Our Top Choice Restaurant

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Best Time to Visit

Summer: Sunny, crowded, peak tourist season. Spring/Fall: Mild weather, fewer crowds, ideal sightseeing. Winter: Chilly, festive atmosphere, fewer tourists.

Average Temperature

The average temperature in Rome, Italy is pleasant.

Transportation Options

Metro, buses, trams, taxis, bikes, scooters, walking, car rentals.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

Start your journey by strolling through the charming cobblestone streets of Trastevere, where you'll discover hidden gems like picturesque piazzas and authentic trattorias serving mouthwatering traditional Roman dishes.

For a truly unforgettable experience, make sure to visit Vatican City, the smallest independent state in the world. Marvel at the breathtaking beauty of St. Peter's Basilica and stand in awe before the mesmerizing Sistine Chapel's ceiling masterpiece painted by Michelangelo.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Valid passport or identification
  2. Comfortable walking shoes
  3. Lightweight clothing for warm weather

What Not to Miss

  1. The Colosseum
  2. Vatican City and St. Peter's Basilica
  3. Trevi Fountain
  4. Roman Forum
  5. Pantheon

What to Avoid

  1. Overpriced tourist traps
  2. Pickpockets and petty theft
  3. Eating near major attractions

1. Walk Around St Peter's Square

St Peter's Square, Rome

St Peter's Square in Vatican City is a must-see on any itinerary. It is surrounded by some of the most iconic buildings and sculptures of Rome, which makes taking a walk around it an experience like no other.

The vast square itself was designed by Bernini, who created its elliptical shape with two radiating arms and elegant balustrades that embrace visitors as they enter St Peter's Square.

With incredible views of St Peter's Basilica, it is easily one of Rome’s most beautiful attractions.

The centerpiece of St Peter's Square is a large Egyptian obelisk that stands 25 meters tall and dates back to 10BC. On either side of the obelisk are two impressive fountains designed by Maderno and Bernini.

Both are breathtakingly ornate works of art that add to the grand atmosphere of St Peter's Square.

2. Climb the Dome at St Peter's Basilica

Dome at St Peter's Basilica

Climbing the Dome at St Peter's Basilica, also known as Basilica di San Pietro, is an experience unlike any other.

Located in Vatican City, St. Peter's Basilica is one of the most well-known architectural masterpieces in the world and stands tall as a beacon of Christianity.

The climb up to the top of the dome at St Peter's Basilica gives you an unparalleled view of Rome, allowing you to take in its stunning beauty from a unique angle.

The winding staircase will bring you closer to Michelangelo’s breathtaking frescoes and decorations that adorn the walls of Peter's Basilica.

3. Witness the Ancient History of the Roman Forum

The Roman Forum, Rome

The Roman Forum, located in the city center, is a breathtaking ancient site that has been standing for over three thousand years.

The Roman Forum was dedicated to the public in 7 BC and served as a bustling hub of political activity, religious ceremonies, and social events. Even today the Roman Forum remains one of the top things to do in Rome.

Exploring the Roman Forum is like taking a step into an ancient world. All around you are remnants from centuries past including crumbling temples and monuments that provide a testament to its long history.

At the Roman Forum, you can wander through alleyways lined with columns and arches or take in the beauty of the Temple of Julius Caesar.

With every turn of the Roman Forum, you come face-to-face with another piece of ancient history waiting to be discovered.

4. Admire the Ceiling of the Sistine Chapel

Sistine Chapel, Rome

The Sistine Chapel, located in Vatican City, is one of the most iconic and renowned religious sites in the world.

Famous for its exquisite artwork and architectural design, visiting the Sistine Chapel is a must on any list of things to do in Rome.

Admiring this marvelous masterwork of Renaissance art should be top of your list when exploring the Sistine Chapel.

The ceiling of the Sistine Chapel was painted between 1508 and 1512 by Michelangelo Buonarroti, often referred to as 'the father of High Renaissance art'.

His work extends over 500 square meters featuring nine scenes from Genesis surrounded by 300 figures from the Old Testament.

You can take a guided tour of both the Sistine Chapel and St Peter's Basilica since they are both within Vatican City.

5. Explore the Colosseum and Ancient Rome

Colosseum, Rome

The Colosseum is a feat of architecture and engineering ingenuity located in the city center.

Once home to ancient Romans, gladiator battles, and mock naval voyages, this magnificent structure remains one of the grandest ancient ruins that you can visit today.

Spanning over 183 meters in length, this impressive amphitheater was built in 70 A.D. The Colosseum's significance goes beyond its grandeur. Satisfy your curiosity by checking out these interesting Colosseum facts.

One of the Roman emperors, Emperor Vespasian, was in power when it was created and it continues to be a must-see destination for travelers from around the world.

Related Article: Rome Colosseum Tickets & Pricing: Easy Access & Insider Tips

6. Explore the Vatican & its Museums

The Vatican, Rome

Are you a lover of art and history? Then the Vatican Museums should be at the top of your list of things to do in Rome.

Located in Vatican City, the Vatican Museums are open to the public and offer an incredible opportunity to explore some of the world’s most famous works of art.

From Raphael’s frescoes to Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel, you can find it all here.

The collection at the Vatican Museums includes over 70 galleries where visitors can admire the most famous paintings, sculptures, tapestries, maps, and other works spanning centuries.

At the Vatican Museums, visitors will also find ancient Roman statues, Egyptian mummies, and even Etruscan artifacts.

The vast collection makes it easy for everyone to discover something that appeals to them. You just need to choose which Vatican Museum to begin with.

7. Take a Stroll on the Paths of Palatine Hill

Palatine Hill, Rome

When visiting the Eternal City, a memorable attraction is Palatine Hill, which is one of the seven hills of Rome.

Located in the city center and overlooking the Roman Forum, this ancient landmark offers visitors a glimpse into some of the earliest events that shaped Western civilization.

Visiting Palatine Hill is an amazing experience for all ages. Palatine Hill has been around for centuries and today serves as an archaeological site for those who want to learn more about its history.

With wide open spaces and breathtaking views across Rome, it's easy to get lost in the beauty of Palatine Hill. As you stroll along its paths, you'll be surrounded by inspiring stories from ancient times.

Whether it's admiring impressive ruins or observing wildlife at play, a walk through one of the seven hills of Rome is sure to ignite your sense of adventure.

8. Make a Wish at the Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain, Rome

The Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy is one of the most iconic landmarks in the world. The Trevi Fountain is located in the Piazza di Trevi Square.

Finished in 1762, the Trevi Fountain is a beautiful masterpiece of Baroque art and architecture that attracts thousands of visitors from around the globe each year.

People come to marvel at its beauty, take photos, and make a wish.

It's said that if you throw a coin into the Trevi Fountain with your right hand over your left shoulder, your wish will come true.

This tradition has been passed down for centuries. Definitely add the Trevi Fountain to your list of things to do in Rome, Italy if you want to get a little lucky.

9. Ride Through the Piazza del Popolo on a Segway Tour

Piazza del Popolo

Ride through the Piazza del Popolo on a Segway tour and explore the city center like never before. This is an unforgettable way to experience the city of Rome and see its majestic sights.

The Segway tour begins in the Piazza del Popolo, Rome’s most famous square. The Piazza del Popolo has three fountains, interesting churches, and an important city gate into Rome.

You'll be welcomed by a friendly local guide who will show you how to ride your Segway safely before you take off for your tour.

As you glide through the streets, your expert local guide will share stories about Rome’s fascinating past and present and show you marvelous sites including the Santa Maria dei Miracoli, a beautiful church.

10. Fall in Love with Contemporary Art at the Villa Borghese

Villa Borghese

Spend a day exploring the art of the past and present. The Villa Borghese, in the ancient city of Rome, is home to many contemporary pieces from around the world.

The Villa Borghese was built in 1613 and has been home to many artists throughout its 300-year history.

Along with contemporary art, it now features highlights from modern art movements such as Pop Art, Minimalism, and Surrealism.

Discover and revel in the beauty of modern art at Villa Borghese during your next visit to Rome.

11. Do a Walking Tour around Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona

Are you looking for a fun and unique way to explore Rome? Look no further than Piazza Navona. The vibrant Piazza Navona is filled with centuries of history, art, and culture.

Piazza Navona is the perfect spot to spend an afternoon exploring.

The best way to experience all that Piazza Navona has to offer is by taking a walking tour around the area. On a tour of Piazza Navona, you'll see iconic landmarks such as the Fountain of Four Rivers, Sant’Angelo Castle, and much more.

As you walk around Piazza Navona, take time to appreciate the stunning Renaissance architecture and observe street performers entertaining visitors in Piazza Navona.

While exploring the picturesque Piazza Navona, be sure to grab some traditional Italian food at one of the local eateries.

12. Tour the Pantheon

The Pantheon, Rome

The Pantheon, a Roman temple in the Eternal City, is a temple that is one of the best-preserved buildings in Rome today. It is located in the center of the stunning Piazza della Rotonda.

One of the Roman emperors, Emperor Hadrian, had this monument built nearly two thousand years ago during the height of the wealth of the Roman empire.

Emperor Hadrian wanted the Pantheon to be used as a church since 609AD and still stands proudly in all its glory.

As you wander around the building, you’ll find yourself surrounded by breathtaking beauty, from intricate sculptures adorning its exterior walls to stunningly detailed mosaics beneath your feet.

Make sure to visit the Piazza della Rotonda for these incredible views.

13. Wander Through the Vatican Gardens

Vatican Gardens

The Vatican Gardens, a lush oasis of beauty and tranquility is one of Rome's most beloved attractions.

Whether you're a history enthusiast or simply looking for a peaceful activity in the bustling city, these lovely gardens are sure to be a highlight on your list of things to do in Rome.

The gardens date back to 1279 and are filled with ancient sculptures, fountains, grottos, flowerbeds, and decorative trees.

Visitors can explore many pathways winding through colorful rose beds, paths leading to hidden corners, and stunning views of St Peter's dome in St Peter's Square from the Loggia di Benedizione terrace.

If you look closely enough, you can even find a secret garden.

14. Attend Mass at the Basilica di San Clemente

Basilica di San Clemente

If you are looking for a spiritual experience in Rome, attending mass at a catholic church, like the Basilica di San Clemente, would be memorable. This incredible basilica is located on the Via di S.

Giovanni in Laterano in the city center is one of the oldest churches in Rome, Italy. Masses are held throughout the day and night in different languages, making it easy to find a service that fits your schedule.

The Basilica di San Clemente is known for its beautiful architecture, featuring three distinct levels that each tell their own story.

The first level dates back to medieval times, while the second level features many works of art from the early Christian period.

On the last floor lies an ancient pagan temple dedicated to Mithras, believed by some to have been converted into a church during Roman rule.

15. Explore the Food in the Jewish Ghetto

Jewish Ghetto

Exploring the food of a Jewish ghetto is an eye-opening experience.

From traditional street vendors to modern cafes, there are plenty of hidden gems to get your hands on some authentic fare.

The Jewish Ghetto has been around for centuries and its cuisine reflects that with its traditional recipes passed down through generations.

Dishes like kugel, gefilte fish, blintzes, and latkes are among the most popular items found in these eateries. Make sure not to fall for one of the tourist traps and choose an authentic restaurant.

16. Purchase Fruits and Vegetables from Campo de Fiori

Campo de Fiori

If you're looking to purchase the freshest, most delicious fruits and vegetables around, then Campo de Fiori should be at the top of your list of things to do in Rome.

Located in the heart of Rome's city center, this bustling marketplace has been offering fresh produce since 1869.

Campo de Fiori is known for its wide array of fruits and vegetables, ranging from traditional Italian favorites like artichokes and peppers to exotic tropical delicacies like mangos and papayas.

The vendors at Campo de Fiori take great pride in the quality of their produce.

17. Take a Day Trip to Ostia Antica

Ostia Antica

Rome, Italy has plenty to see, but if you're looking to escape the Italian capital, then head over to Ostia Antica for a perfect day trip away.

Located just a short train ride away from Rome, Ostia Antica was once the port of Ancient Rome and is now an archaeological site.

During this day trip, you can explore the ruins of old villas, baths, and temples as well as visit museums and theaters.

18. Walk Across the Tiber River

Tiber River

While Rome has several tourist attractions, including thrilling tales of climbing Palatine Hill and entering the Colosseum, nothing quite compares to the experience of taking a stroll across the iconic Tiber River.

A walk across this historic river is sure to leave an impression on you for years to come. Located in the city center, this bridge allows visitors to take advantage of some breathtaking views and learn about the mystical river gods.

With plenty of sights and sounds from both sides of the bridge, it’s no surprise that crossing it has become something worthy of your list of things to do in Rome.

19. Visit the Central and Iconic Piazza Venezia

Piazza Venezia

Piazza Venezia, located in the heart of Rome, is one of its most iconic and beautiful landmarks.

This popular tourist destination offers visitors a wide range of attractions and activities. From shopping to sightseeing, there’s something for everyone at Piazza Venezia.

Piazza Venezia is dominated by the imposing white marble monument, Vittoriano. Standing tall at over 70 meters high, it was built to commemorate King Victor Emmanuel II, the first king of unified Italy.

Visitors can explore the interior and admire awe-inspiring views from its terrace.

20. See Beautiful Statues at the Capitoline Museums

Capitoline Museums

Another must-do on your list of things to do in Rome is to visit the Capitoline Museums.

Located on the famous Capitoline Hill, the Capitoline Museums complex is home to some of the most beautiful sculptures from classical antiquity.

Visitors can take in over 2000 years of history as they explore ancient Roman sculptures such as the iconic she-wolf that protected Romulus and Remus.

For art lovers, the marble statues in the Capitoline Museums are sure to be unforgettable, with their intricate details and vibrant colors allowing viewers to appreciate how skilled Roman sculptors were at capturing emotion through their artwork.

21. Walk Up and Down the Spanish Steps

Spanish Steps, Rome

The Spanish Steps in Rome is one of the most iconic sites in the world.

Located at the base of the Trinita dei Monti Church, tourists flock from all over to experience the wonderful piece of history and culture that the Spanish Steps embody.

Spend your time admiring the Spanish Steps as you make your way up or down, each step telling a story about Rome’s past and present.

From early morning until dusk, you can take in views of some of Rome's most famous monuments including the Piazza di Spagna at the foot of the Spanish Steps. The Piazza di Spagna has a long and illustrious history and is home to the Spanish embassy of Rome.

Built in 1725, the Piazza di Spagna was designed by Francesco de Sanctis to honor Pope Innocent X and to provide a space for his successor Pope Benedict XIII to lead the faithful.

To this day the Piazza di Spagna still remains a popular gathering spot for locals and visitors alike.

No matter how you choose to spend your time at the Spanish Steps, it’s sure to become a treasured memory that you can look back on for years to come.

22. Take a Cooking Class with a Local Chef

Cooking Class, Rome

Are you looking to add some international flavor to your cooking? Nothing beats learning how to make classic Italian dishes from a local chef in Rome.

Taking a cooking class with a local chef is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the history and traditions of the Eternal City.

Cooking classes are available for all skill levels, from beginner to master. Learn the basics of Italian cuisine with simple, home-style recipes that will give you confidence in making amazing meals for friends and family.

23. Take Photos by the Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi

Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi

The Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, which translates to the Fountain of Four Rivers, is located in the city center of Rome. This captivating Baroque masterpiece has been around since 1651.

Created by Bernini, it was commissioned by Pope Innocent X who wanted it to represent the four major rivers within his papal boundaries at that time: The Nile, Danube, Ganges, and Rio de la Plata.

24. See an Exhibition at the Palazzo Borghese

Palazzo Borghese

Once the seat of power for the notorious Borgia family, Palazzo Borghese in Rome is a gorgeous example of Renaissance architecture. Located on Via del Corso, this magnificent palace was built by architect Flaminio Ponzio in 1605.

It has been home to many influential families over the centuries and its grandeur continues to draw visitors from around the world.

The extravagant palace features an array of Baroque-style sculptures, frescoes, and tapestries adorning its walls, with lavish courtyards that reflect a combination of Renaissance and Baroque styles.

25. Take a Guided Tour of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore

Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore

The Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore is an iconic Catholic church located in the city center of Rome.

The breathtakingly beautiful Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore has a long and rich history and offers visitors a chance to explore its many wonders.

Whether you are looking for spiritual guidance or just want to admire the stunning architecture and artwork, taking a private tour of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore is an unforgettable experience.

At the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore, you will be taken through each area by knowledgeable staff who can provide insight into the various artifacts, works of art, and religious relics on display at the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore.

26. Walk Around the Walls of the Vatican City

Vatican City

Vatican City is one of the most historical and breathtaking cities in the world. It's no wonder why it has been dubbed 'the world’s smallest country'.

There are many ways to explore this beautiful city, but nothing quite beats a walk around all of Vatican City. With an area of just 121 acres, it's easy enough to take a leisurely stroll around this mini nation-state.

27. Learn about all the Gods of the Eternal City

Square in Rome, Italy

The Eternal City is known to be where gods and goddesses have resided for centuries. Take a tour through time and learn about all of the gods who have graced this city with their presence.

From Greek gods such as Zeus and Poseidon to Roman gods such as Jupiter and Apollo, you'll find plenty of divine figures in the city's historical sites.

28. Experience the Whimsical Ninfa Gardens

Whimsical Ninfa Gardens

The Ninfa Gardens is a magical and whimsical oasis in the heart of Italy’s capital city. This incredible garden is not only a stunning sight, but it also offers a unique experience that you won’t find anywhere else.

Here you can spend an afternoon admiring the vibrant flowers and lush greenery that make up this beautiful landscape. Get lost in the winding pathways, discovering hidden waterfalls, secret ponds, and more.

29. Explore the Ancient Trajan's Market

Trajan's Market

One of the unique things to do in Rome is to visit the bustling market, Trajan's Market, as it's the perfect place to explore.

Located in the city center near Via dei Fori Imperiali, Trajan's Market is one of the best-preserved monuments from classical antiquity.

The market dates back to the early 2nd century AD and was commissioned by Emperor Trajan as part of his grand imperial project.

It was an important gathering point for citizens to buy food and goods as well as hear news and gossip about daily events.

30. Marvel Over the Temple of Venus and Roma

Temple of Venus and Roma, Rome

Located in Rome, Italy, the Temple of Venus and Roma was built by Emperor Hadrian in the 2nd century AD and is one of the largest surviving structures from classical antiquity.

The temple stands out among other Roman monuments due to its impressive size and grandeur.

31. Stop by the Equestrian Statue

Equestrian Statue, Rome

The Equestrian Statue of Marcus Aurelius is a must-see for any traveler to Rome. Located on Capitoline Hill, it is one of the few equestrian monuments from antiquity that has survived intact.

This powerful bronze statue stands tall as a reminder of one of ancient Rome’s most influential leaders and philosophers.

The statue depicts Marcus Aurelius on horseback, wearing armor and with his right hand raised in a gesture of peace.

At its base are four figures representing personifications of virtues; these include Justice, Wisdom, Temperance, and Courage.

32. Visit the Animals at Bioparco Zoo

Bioparco Zoo, Rome

If you need a break from all of the Roman history you've been learning, visiting the Bioparco Zoo is a great way to get away and get close to some amazing animals from all around the world.

With over 400 species, you'll find everything from tigers, lions, and bears to monkeys, birds, and reptiles.

The zoo has been operating since 1911, so it's a popular choice for locals and tourists alike. If you are an animal lover, you'll need to add this to your list of things to do in Rome.

FAQs Regarding Things to Do in Rome

Let's look at some frequently asked questions about things to do in Rome.

What shouldn't you miss in Rome?

When visiting Rome, you cannot miss St Peter's Basilica, the Sistine Chapel, the Colosseum, and the Pantheon. With so much more to see beyond these highlights, don't stop there. Check out the amazing collections of art and ancient artifacts around the city as well.

Can I do Rome in 2 days?

Yes, you can do Rome in two days. While you will have to keep a busy schedule and you will not see everything, you can make the most of two full days in Rome. Spend one day in the Vatican and the other in the city center.

Is a week in Rome too much?

A week in Rome is not necessarily too much, but with all of that time, you might consider taking a day trip or two. We have already discussed Ostia Antica, or, from Rome, you can get a cheap and quick train to Tivoli, famous for its gardens. There are many exciting places to visit near Rome.

Summing up: Fun Things to Do in Rome This Year

Rome is a vibrant, beautiful city packed with many wonderful sites, thrilling experiences, and breathtaking historic artifacts.

From its ancient structures and masterpieces of Renaissance art to contemporary cafes and trendy bars, there are many exciting places to visit in Rome.

So, pack your bags, choose your tours, and get exploring. Just remember to book your tickets for any museums or events that you want to see well in advance.