Exploring Rome: A Day Filled with Heat, Crowds, and Unforgettable Sights

Italy has always been a dream location of mine. And Rome was, of course, on top of my list. I grew up watching Audrey Hepburn movies, and I swore to myself that one says I would have a “Roman Holiday” too. Approximately 15 years later, I found myself in the Eternal City. And even though my time there wasn’t as enchanting as it was in an Old Hollywood movie, I was still in awe of how stunning this place was. So let me take you through my journey of battling tourist crowds, using the Italian metro system, and trying to take a decent picture at the Trevi Fountain.

First stop — The Vatican

Walking towards the Vatican, I was immediately struck by the overwhelming crowds and the sweltering heat that accompanied them. The sight of the unbelievably long lines stretching outside the Vatican City walls made it clear that I would have to summon all my patience. However, the architectural marvel of St. Peter’s Basilica and the stunning art within the Vatican Museums made the wait worthwhile. If you’re not interested in visiting the museum, still make a stop at the St. Peter’s Basilica. Trust me — it’s worth it!

The Trevi Fountain & Colosseum in Rome

Next on my list was a visit to the famous Trevi Fountain. However, this proved to be a challenge due to the massive crowds. The struggle to take a decent picture without a swarm of tourists was real, but I managed to capture a few shots of this iconic symbol of Rome’s grandeur. Tossing a coin into the fountain, following the tradition, I made a wish, hoping to return to Rome someday and experience it with fewer crowds. We’ll see how that will go. 

A trip to Rome would be incomplete without visiting the iconic Colosseum. Despite the scorching heat and the crowds, the grandeur of this ancient amphitheater left me in awe. It’s so powerful seeing it in person instead of just online pictures. If you really want to take some amazing pictures, I would suggest taking a walk uphill on the street next to it. You will have a better perspective and also be able to admire it in peace. If you want to learn more about its history, you can also book some of the numerous guided tours. 

Prices & transportation 

Rome’s charm comes at a price, quite literally. I couldn’t help but notice the high prices in both street stores and restaurants. Touristy areas, especially around major landmarks, tend to be more expensive. Additionally, I discovered hidden service fees in some establishments, which caught me off guard. Nevertheless, if you want to enjoy a Roman holiday on a budget, definitely stay off the main streets and explore the less crowded neighborhoods. That will also give you a glimpse into the local lifestyle.

Rome is a huge city, so exploring it solely by foot would be almost impossible. Luckily, their public transportation system is amazing! Their metro system is easy to understand. Tickets can be bought almost anywhere, and I also felt safe during all of my rides. I stepped into the metro near the Colosseum, and hopped off at the Spagna station, near the Spanish Steps. This is another tourist hot spot that’s just perfect for taking pictures. Once you climb up the stairs you reach the Trinità dei Monti church and enjoy some panoramic views of Rome. But make sure you always keep an eye on your belongings, as it’s packed with both tourists and locals.

Is Rome worth it — The answer is a clear yes!

While the crowds and high prices were undoubtedly frustrating at times, they were a testament to Rome’s popularity as a tourist destination. However, I discovered that venturing off the beaten path and exploring the lesser-known neighborhoods allowed for a more authentic and affordable experience. It was in these hidden corners that I truly got a taste of the local culture.


To fully explore Rome and truly immerse oneself in its beauty, I would recommend spending more time than just one day. There are plenty of hotels in Rome for you to choose from so you can stay in Rome longer. The city deserves time and attention to truly get to know it. Whether it’s indulging in gelato while strolling along the Tiber River, marveling at the exquisite artwork in the Vatican, or savoring the flavors of traditional Roman cuisine, there is just so much to discover. So, if you find yourself in Rome, remember to stay patient, embrace the crowds, and get lost in the magic of the Eternal City. 

Kanita is a wanderlust-fueled traveler with an inclination for unraveling the mysteries of history, the paranormal, and the bizarre world of medicine. As a true crime buff, Kanita's nights are often spent delving into the depths of chilling mysteries. Yet, it's not just the paranormal that captivates her—her background in medicine fuels a fascination with the weird and wonderful world of medical oddities, from twisted historical practices to the myths and legends that shroud the field. From exploring haunted locales to uncovering the strange and morbid tales of medical history, Kanita is your guide to the unconventional, the unexplained, and the downright eerie.

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