Fora Favorites: Our Guide to Rome

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  • Italy

  • Rome

  • Food & Wine

  • Art & Culture

  • Off-the-Beaten-Path Travel

cobblestoned alleyway flanked by vines
Fora’s Take

An enchanting mix of lively culture, stunning ruins and irresistible food, Italy’s must-visit capital is one of the world’s most captivating cities.

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Insider knowledge

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Where to stay

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Hotel de Russie

An unabashedly luxe stay from Rocco Forte near the Spanish Steps, set apart by the service and sprawling gardens.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Portrait Roma

An elegant, fashionable stay from the Ferragamos, with a coveted roof terrace and central location near the Spanish Steps.

Fora Perks
  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability

  • Continental breakfast daily, for two guests per bedroom, served in the hotel restaurant

  • Complimentary one-way private airport transfers

Hotel Eden, Rome

All-out luxury near Trevi Fountain, with 98 rooms that feel like upscale residences and knockout views from the Michelin-Starred restaurant.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade whenever possible.

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Rome's greatest hits

stone steps leading up to a two-towered building

The must-visits include the Colosseum, Roman Forum and the Vatican. But touring this all will take an entire (exhausting) day. Split up time by dedicating a morning to the Forum and Colosseum, followed by lunch and shopping in the Campo Dei Fiori. Plan ahead (and ask us about a secret VIP entry) for the Vatican, a place where a guide can be especially useful. 

The Pantheon and its famous oculus can be visited on a "walk by,” just be sure to be dressed appropriately, as they don't allow bare shoulders (women) or knees (men and women). Villa Borghese will also require pre-purchased and timed entry tickets. Hit the Spanish Steps early in the morning before the crowds!

Places to eat & drink in Rome

small tables and red chairs outside of a rustic Italian restaurant

Al Moro: Familiarize yourself with traditional Italian cuisine with Al Moro’s trattoria menu.

Antico Arco: Cute little spot for lunch or dinner serving contemporary cuisine.

Aroma: Michelin-starred restaurant overlooking the Coliseum – doesn’t get more romantic than this!

Bar del Fico: Funky bar that’s perfect for post-dinner cocktails.

Coffee Pot Trastevere: When you’re craving something other than pasta, visit Coffee Pot Trastevere for the best sushi and poké in town. 

Dal Bolognese: Located right on Popolo and the perfect spot for a first night arrival. Soak up the vibes, people watch and immerse yourself in the Roman atmosphere. Request an outdoor table! 

Dillà: You can’t go wrong with any of the pastas, but for a classic, order the carbonara.

Emma: Casual but stylish pizzeria. Stop by for a pizza lunch and then spend the afternoon shopping around the streets in Campo di Fiori.

Fatamorgana: Gelato is a must, and Fatamorgana sources the best local ingredients. For a bucket list stop, check out Giolitti, the oldest gelateria in Rome founded in 1900.

Hotel de Russie: You must have an afternoon spritz here in the garden, regardless of where you’re staying. 

Pierluigi: Another classic spot, slightly-more-formal but by no means stuffy. Founded in 1938, Pierluigi’s claim to fame is that it is the oldest fish restaurant in the Eternal City. Sit outside on the plaza. 

Salumeria Roscioli: An unmissable restaurant. Book ahead of time; tables are tough to score. They also have a separate coffee shop and bakery.

Taverna Trilussa: Amazing pasta in Trastevere, one of the most picturesque neighborhoods in Rome.

Rome's best shopping

yellow and turquoise vespas side-by-side in a charming, sun-lit alley

Rome is great for shopping. Be sure to walk along Via di Monserrato, Via Condotti (high end) and ​​Via Urbana (boutique). These are a few stores that stand out:

Assemblea: A small shop brimming with gems. The owners curate their selection from small artisans throughout the country.

Delfina Delettrez: A go-to jewelry store for simple-yet-statement pieces.

Essenzialmente Laura: A self-proclaimed experimental space, Essenzialmente Laura creates perfumes inspired by Rome. The entire collection is produced and packaged by hand in Italy using artisanal methods. 

Twice Vintage Shop: Peruse high-quality vintage pieces that date from the 1920s through the 1990s. The cozy shop is overflowing with carefully curated pieces, and savvy shoppers could score a vintage Balenciaga scarf or Fendi bag.

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Rome.