Experience Rome on a Budget
You are never too quick or too late in exploring an opportunity to be a part of Rome- a city of International Brand. Although Rome is one of the costliest in the world’s 50 most visited travel destinations, you can always make it a cost-effective deal. It only requires careful trip planning, quick & detailed tour guidance to enjoy the flavour of tourist asset and attractions over here. Here is an easy guide to take you through the shortcuts of Rome. Keep reading…
Getting to and from the airport
You have a few options getting to Rome city centre from either of the two airports Fiumicino and Ciampino located just outside Rome. The Leonardo Express train which travels directly to Termini train station in Central Rome, takes 30 mins. You can buy your Leonardo Express train ticket from the train ticket office for €14; remember to validate your train ticket in the yellow machines at the entrance to the platform to avoid risking a fine. There is also a bus shuttle between Rome’s two airports and the Termini train station which takes about 1-hour and 20 mins costing €8.
The majority of Rome can be explored by foot if you stay in a central location. You can buy a metro or bus ticket from the many newsagents who display the brown ‘T’ sign outside. A one-way ticket costs €1 while a one-day ticket will cost €4, ideal for getting around the city to see a few attractions in a day. Remember to validate your ticket in the yellow machines before you travel, the machines can be found on the buses and in the entrances to the metro stations. Failure to validate your ticket could land you a hefty fine. Transport in Rome is frequent and bus routes are displayed on each bus stop dotted around.
Avoid the 2-hour queues trailing around the Vatican Square and head straight to the Tourist Information office tucked away beside St Peter’s Basilica. Ignore the touts outside who will try to persuade you to pay over the odds for a supposed ‘guided tour’ of the Vatican Museum and Basilica, luring you with the prospect of queue jumping, even though entrance to the Basilica is free. Stairs up to the dome of the Basilica costs 4€ and an elevator to the dome costs 5€. Head around the corner to the Vatican Museums in the morning and save visiting the St Peter’s Basilica until the afternoon when the queues have died down. The Vatican operate a strict dress code where shoulders and knees have to be covered before entering holy places of interest.
Vatican Museums & the Sistine Chapel
You can buy your ticket for the Vatican Museum for €15 and buy a special queue jump ticket for €4 – well worth it to avoid the scorching midday sun heat in the square. Walk around the outside of the Vatican City walls until you reach the Vatican Museum entrance, avoiding the long queue. The rooms within the museum are a masterpiece themselves, especially the Sistine Chapel. Opening times are Monday –Saturday 9am-6pm, last entrance is at 4pm.
There is so much to see in the Roman Forum and Colosseum; you can easily spend a whole day here. See the Roman temple ruins and wonder what life might have been like 2000 years ago. Your admission ticket allows entry to The Roman Forum, Palantine Hill and the Colosseum. Admission costs 10€
Originally built as a temple to all Gods of Ancient Rome, the façade of the pantheon looks like an ancient temple. Almost two thousand years after the monument was constructed, the Pantheon’s dome is still the world’s largest unreinforced concrete dome with an open top. The Pantheon is open Mon-Sat 8:30am-7:30pm; Sun 9am-6pm and admission is free.
The largest of the many fountains found dotted around Rome, The Trevi Fountain was originally built on the site of an aqueduct that supplied water to ancient Rome. Traditional legend has it that if visitors throw a coin into the fountain, they will return to Rome again. It is estimated that €3,000 are thrown into the fountain each day from visitors, the money is used to help Rome’s poor and homeless people. There are also a few good ice cream parlours in the square surrounding the fountain, a great place to rest and admire the architecture.
This is a guest post written by Jack Russell. He has authored an extensive collation of travel-related information for hundreds of cities around the world.