Some information about the Historic Center:
To try to summarize the Historic Center of Rome in a mere few lines would be impossible. Here we encounter history at its very source, contained in the numerous monuments and churches which transport us back in time to the fascinating past of Roman Art and Culture.
Piazza Navona is one of the main spots where tourists love to go for a stroll. There are a variety of quality restaurants in the area where you can taste typical Roman cuisine.
In the center of the Piazza you can find the famous “Fountain of the Four Rivers” by Bernini. Each day street artists, painters, portraitists and musicians gather in this area creating a warm, lively and unique atmosphere.
Just a few steps away from Piazza Navona you will find Piazza Campo de Fiori, famous for statue of Giordano Bruno who was burned alive there during the Inquisition.
In the daytime the piazza is home to a street market, but at night, when the stands are dismantled, the piazza evolves into a popular spot for a young crowd of both Romans and foreigners. There are a variety of pubs where you can grab a beer or an ice cream --- or you can just opt to take a stroll in the midst of the crowds.
Continuing to head toward the Tiber river you can reach Piazza Farnese, seat of the French Embassy. Just behind the Embassy you can find Via Giulia which runs along the river until it meets Corso Vittorio Emanuele II.
Another interesting path to explore runs from Piazza Venezia to Piazza del Popolo, along of the main shoppingthoroughfare’s of Rome: Via del Corso.
This street is lined with stores and on Saturday afternoons is packed with a young crowd doing “lo struscio” “the rustle” and anyone in the mood to do a bit of shopping!
Down the road, where Via del Corso runs into Piazza Colonna you will find the famous Trevi Fountain: one of the most visited and photographed sites of Rome. According to tradition, visitors to Rome must toss a coin into the fountain to insure they will return again to the Eternal City!
A few minutes walking distance from the Trevi Fountain you can find Piazza di Spagna. The Spanish Steps, in front of the “barcaccia” (the small fountain in the shape of a boat at the foot of the steps) is yet another popular meeting point.
Continuing along following Via di Ripetta you will run into Piazza del Popolo, of the largest and grandest squares of Rome.
And for those looking for a bit of greenery in the historic center of Rome, a hop, skip and jump will take you to “Pincio” a terrace with a splendid view of Rome, just behind Villa Borghese the “Central Park” of the Roman community.
Up here you can take a scenic walk, rent a bicycle or simply relax in the shade of the abundant trees.
To conclude this abridged tour of the city center of Rome, we of course cannot forget the Pantheon, a characteristic church built on the base of an ancient Roman temple which is famous for the “oculus” (circular hole) in the summit of the domed ceiling.
Another place of note in the area worth exploring is Via Veneto, famous thanks to the 50’s film and today home to luxury hotels and a number of first class restaurants.