Rome, or Roma as it’s popularly called, is a one of a kind city. It’s a world-renowned historical place filled with regal fountains, statues sculpted with laser like accuracy and giant monuments. It’s one of the few cities I know of aside from Montreal, that maintains an old world charm while slowly adapting to the modern day. Walking through Rome makes it easy to picture what it must’ve been like to live in the age of the gladiators. I was surprised at how calm the city was at night, but what the city lacks in nightlife, it more than makes up for with sheer beauty. Rome, and Italy as a whole can be a little on the costly side though, so I’ve carved out a neat list of free things to do in the city which was once considered to be the centre of the world.

Here are 8 Ways To Experience Rome, Italy On A Budget.

Drift Away - Travel Blog - Unsplash Trevi Fountain
The Trevi Fountain:
The fountain was being renovated the last time I was in Rome. Rumour has it thousands of people visit this gorgeous fountain on a daily basis. There’s a also a tradition of throwing coins over your shoulder and into the fountain so this technically isn’t free (but it’s also not mandatory). Who knows? If this blogging thing doesn’t work out, maybe I’ll move to Rome and become a fountain diver. I figure if a few thousand people throw a few coins my way everyday, I’ll be rich in no time.

Don’t Be Shy:
There’s a saying that goes “ask and you shall receive.” Well keep this in mind on your next trip to Rome, especially when you grab a bite to eat or something to drink at restaurants and bars. The food in Rome is top notch and the service leaves nothing to be desired. But if you want to save yourself a whole lot of euros, before you’re escorted to your seat on a charming street side patio, ask your server if there is a service fee or cover charge. These “hidden” charges add up quickly. 3 euros here, 2 euros there (per person) and suddenly you’ve blindly obliterated your budget. Don’t be shy, ask the question and stretch your hard-earned dollars.

The Roman Forum:
Ditch the long line ups at the Colosseum and many of the other gorgeous but outrageously expensive “must-see” sites. Check out the Roman Forum for free instead. Stroll through and get a real feel for what life was like in Rome all those years ago. Admittedly, it certainly isn’t as nice as the Colosseum but it’s still worth a visit.

The Vatican? For Free?
Everything is better when it’s free! And a free trip to one of the world’s most popular attractions is even better for free ninety-nine. Timing really is everything though, because this isn’t an everyday type of deal. The Vatican only opens its doors for free on the last Sunday of every month. This isn’t exactly the world‘s best kept secret though, so I’d show up way early if I were you. And by early I mean really early.

Monumento a Vittorio Emanuele:
The first time I came across this enormous Italian fixture in Rome, I thought the White House had been picked up, thrown across the Atlantic Ocean and revamped with red white and green flags. What I was actually standing in front of was the Monumento a Vittorio Emanuele. It’s easily one of Rome’s most recognizable buildings. Take a selfie in front or go in and take advantage of the free museum inside.

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Sunset On A Hill:
If you manage to get yourself up on some of the more elevated buildings in Rome, you’ll fall in love with the sun-scorched view of the city’s rooftops that seem to stretch on forever into the horizon. You’ll get an equally breathtaking view for free if you hike your way up to Gianicolo Hill. Head there around sunset and I promise you will not be disappointed.

The Spanish Steps:
There’s just something about public steps that almost makes them better for sitting than for walking. This is definitely true of the Spanish Steps in Rome. You’ll find people walking up and down as well as sitting all over the steps at every conceivable time of day. It’s the perfect spot to sit around, tan and rest your feet from all the walking (shopping). You’ll see countless people taking pictures and people watching, all for free.

Walk It Out:
Rome has a big history but isn’t a very large place. It’s an extremely walkable city. In fact, I’d say if you don’t spend your time in Rome walking around, you’re missing out on all of the wonder and charm the city has to offer. Soak in the cobblestone streets, smell the delicious food, look at all the Italians dressed to impress in custom suits and formfitting dresses and so much more. That’s what Rome is all about!

Drift Away - Travel Blog - Unsplash Inside St-Peter's Basilica
Bonus: Even More Freebies!
The Pantheon
– St-Peter’s Basilica
– Via Appia Antica
Bocca Della Verita
– Piazza Navona
– Take A Free Tour
Find A Free Concert At Estate Romana

Have you ever been to Rome? What was your favourite Italian experience? Drop a thoughtful response in the comment section below! Sharing is sexy.


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Until next time,
Drift Away. 

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