5 Must See Attractions in Rome That Aren't Colosseo or Vatican

May 12, 2016

Rome, having been the seat of the greatest civilizations of all time, has a lot more to offer than Colosseo or Vatican. Surely, these two are regarded as the city's most popular attractions that you shouldn't miss, but there are several other tourist spots in Italy's capital that are definitely worth seeing -- most of which showcases the Romans' and Italians' excellence in the field of architecture and art (specifically, painting and sculpture).  So in today's post, allow me to tour you around the lovely city of Rome as I list 5 more "jaw-dropping" attractions that will surely take your breath away.  

1.  FONTANA DI TREVI


First on the list is the Trevi Fountain.  Alright, I know some of you might be thinking: "Oh common, a fountain?  A must-see in Rome? You gotta be kidding me!" But believe me, this is a no ordinary fountain!  In fact, it is actually recognized as one of the most beautiful fountains in the world!  

Standing 86 feet high, this ginormous fountain, with a very impressive and intricately designed sculpture, is also considered as the largest Baroque fountain in the city.  I was totally in awe the moment I first laid my eyes on it!  It was perfect!  And I was in-love!  

Apart from being a breathtaking sight to behold, this attraction has also become a popular wishing fountain among tourists, who would throw a coin into the water in the hope that they could someday return to Rome.  Would you believe that according to Wikipedia, an estimated 3,000 euros or PHP 159,000+ are thrown here every day?  With that, can you imagine just how many people flock here every single day?  It's unimaginable!  Based on our experience, the scenario here can be best described in Filipino as "di mahulugang karayom."  Hence, it is highly advisable to stay vigilant of your belongings because this type of environment is highly favorable for pickpockets to easily victimize a distracted tourist.


2.  PANTHEON


Six hundred fifty meters away from the Trevi Fountain is yet another world famous architecture called the Pantheon.  This structure is very famous for it is known as the best preserved and most influential building of the Ancient Rome.  Originally, it was built as a temple dedicated to the Roman gods between 27 and 25 BC, but it had to be rebuilt several times because of the damages it had endured through time.  

The Pantheon that stands today is said to be founded by Emperor Hadrian in 126 AD, which makes it 1,890 years old as of this year 2016!  In addition, its dome has also been recognized as the largest in the world!  Isn't that impressive?  I mean, this structure was established in the ancient barbaric times, yet their knowledge of structural design seemed to be very advanced already. I was truly amazed!  The architect/engineer who designed this building must really be a genius!


3.  VITTORIANO


This massive white marble monument dominating Piazza Venezia is certainly hard to miss because it is situated in the heart of Rome where several roads intersect.  I had my first glance of this magnificent work of art while riding bus #64 on the way to the Vatican City and it left me absolutely stunned!  I can just imagine how my face looked like at that very moment:  open-mouthed and wide-eyed.  I was speechless and the only word I was able to utter was, "Wow!"  

This enormous structure which stands 230 feet high and 443 feet wide, making it the largest in Rome, was built in honor of the country's first king, Victor Emmanuel II.  Hence, it is also known as Monumento Nazionale a Vittorio Emanuele II.  It houses a museum, where the events leading to Italy's unification are exhibited; a tomb of an unknown soldier; and a viewing deck, where you'll have a panoramic view of the city. 


4.  BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA MAGGIORE 


Without a doubt, Rome is the home of the most beautiful churches in the world!  To be honest, our tour of the city had been more like a "Visita Iglesia" because of the many Catholic churches we had visited.  But amongst all the places of worship we've seen, I would say the Basilica Di Santa Maria Maggiore, impressed me the most (second to St Peter's Basilica, of course).  Just look at the photos above and tell me, what's not to love?

This ancient basilica, known as the largest Marian church in Rome, is open to the public for free.  However, please be advised that all visitors are required to pass through security check prior to getting in, so expect a long queue of tourists waiting outside its entrance gate.  

***Open daily from 7 am to 7 pm.  


5.  CASTEL SANT'ANGELO


Just about 750 meters away or approximately 9 minutes walk from St Peter's Basilica is Castel Sant'Angelo.  This cylindrical building, which happens to be one of the most popular castles in Rome, was originally built to serve as a mausoleum of Emperor Hadrian and his family.  However, several years after the Emperor had died, it got converted into a military fortress, a papal residence, a prison, and eventually, a museum.  

This attraction can be explored by the public for a fee of EUR 15.50 for adults and EUR 5.50 for children 6-17 years old.  If you are the type who would love to satisfy your curiosity about how a castle looks like from the inside, then this is the perfect place for you!

***Open from 9.00 am to 7.30 pm. 


***For more photos, stories, and tips about our adventures in Europe, you may check the following blog posts: 

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