Top 10 ideas for a romantic weekend in Rome
Planning a long, romantic weekend with your special someone? Want to combine a city break with an intimate ambience and a spectacular backdrop? Then Rome is the destination for you.
Aside from its incredible historical attractions, the Eternal City is packed full of cosy trattorias, picturesque picnic spots and breath-taking sunset viewpoints.
Here we give you our top 10 most romantic things to do in Rome on your break for two.
Note: Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the availability of activities below could be affected. Remember to check current travel restrictions before booking travel.
1. Rent a Vespa
Rent a Vespa and feel the charm of the Italian capital’s narrow, labyrinthine streets. All your senses come alive when you zip around Rome on one of these iconic scooters. Zoom by the busy markets and lush parks, admire the ancient architecture, and soak up the buzz of this vibrant city. Plus, you can pick out a few spots that catch your eye to return to later.
This is one of the best ways to get to take in the city, but if you’re a bit nervous of riding a moped through all the traffic, then we suggest you go all-out Italian and take a seat in a Fiat 500.
2. Enjoy a picnic for two on Aventine Hill
Grab some prosciutto and a couple of bruschetta, and head up to Aventine Hill for some al-fresco dining. One of the seven hills on which Rome was built, this place is an idyllic setting for a romantic date, especially if you wander over to the colourful Giardino degli Aranci (Orange Garden).
From here, you can catch some heart-melting panoramic views over Rome. And as you leave, don’t forget to keep an eye out for the Cavalieri di Malta (Maltese Knights) gate where a peek through the keyhole will give you a perfectly-framed view of the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica.
3. Make a wish at Fontana di Trevi
The most romantic scenes in the classic film, La Dolce Vita, were shot at the Trevi Fountain, one of Rome’s most iconic sights.
While you can’t mimic Anita Ekberg’s splashing antics in the fountain anymore, you can still take part in the tradition of throwing a coin over your left shoulder into the water using your right hand. This supposedly ensures a return to Rome!
4. Check out the Campo de’ Fiori market
Rome is a city that oozes romance, and you can discover it around every corner.
The Piazza Campo de’ Fiori (Field of Flowers) is a historical square in the Parione district, situated in the centre of Rome. The best time to visit is on a morning when the piazza is transformed into an open-air marketplace (except for Sundays).
Take a stroll, hand-in-hand with your other half, and discover the local delicacies, bask in the smell of Italian bread fresh from the oven, and maybe even pick up a token of your romantic weekend in Rome.
5. Visit St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel
It’s no secret that Rome is a tourist hotspot, so it goes without saying that we’ve thrown a few of the more famous attractions into this list of romantic things to do in Rome.
The long queues in the heart of Vatican City are worth the wait, as you take in Michelangelo’s breath-taking frescoes in the Sistine Chapel. Whether you’re religious or not, you’re sure to recognise ‘The Creation of Adam’ high up on the ceiling of the chapel.
Another memorable sight not to be missed is St. Peter’s Basilica, which was the world’s largest church until 1990. The size of this Renaissance basilica is still incredibly impressive – it has room for approximately 60,000 people.
6. Explore the picturesque district of Trastevere
One of the best ways to discover Rome is to explore its intimate alleyways, colourful shutters and cobbled piazzas, and the district of Trastevere has no shortage of those.
Head across the river Tiber to this part of the Italian capital, which was once considered the outskirts of Rome, and get lost in the winding streets, full of terracotta buildings and coffee bars.
Trastevere also makes for a great place to enjoy a romantic dinner with authentic local cuisine. Head to restaurant Dar Poeta for some delicious pizza cooked in a wood-fired oven.
Tip: If you’re looking to get the best slices in town on your trip, check out our 6 top places for the best pizza in Rome.
7. Discover the secrets of the Colosseum
Another sightseeing hotspot not to be missed is the fascinating historical structure of the Colosseum. The Colosseum is the world’s largest amphitheatre, completed in the year 80 A.D and still standing strong.
Here the past comes to life just picturing the roaring atmosphere when 50,000 spectators attended gladiator battles. But did you know that the building used trap doors to make animals and scenery appear and disappear? Or that sometimes the Colosseum was flooded from a nearby aqueduct so that mock sea battles could take place?
This might not sound particularly romantic, but if you take a guided tour of the Colosseum, you’ll be sure to discover some interesting secrets and collect some long-lasting, shared memories.
8. Experience ancient splendour at the Roman Forum
The ancient vibes can be felt in the historical ruins of the Roman Forum where the commercial, political and religious centre was situated. The ruins and columns remain as a sign of the city’s splendour and glory.
You can combine tours of the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and Palentine Hill but you’ll need a full day to do so. If you’re only in the city on a long weekend break, then be sure to give yourself enough time to explore the rest of the cultural wonders that Rome has to offer.
9. Take an evening stroll around Piazza Navona
Known as the most beautiful square in the world, Piazza Navona is built on the ruins of the Stadium of Domitian and Circus Agonalis from the first century, which is where the Romans went to watch sporting events. It’s lovely here in the evening, and perfect for a romantic stroll amidst the fountains and baroque architecture.
10. Relax in the Villa Borghese park
The Villa Borghese is one of the largest public parks in the city and can be found in the north-eastern quarter of Rome.
This heart-shaped spot is ideal for those looking for a laid-back, sunny afternoon, where you can visit the manicured gardens, enjoy a quiet picnic and take a boat ride on the small lake. It also offers some fantastic panoramic views of the Piazza del Popolo and Rome’s domes.
Reward tips: Earn CashPoints on tours, activities and entrance tickets
A perfect city break in Rome with your sweetheart requires some extra planning. Check out sightseeing tours and tickets with GetYourGuide where you can reserve your activities in advance and get CashPoints on all bookings.
Top 5 romantic hotels in Rome
Book a special hotel room for a long weekend city trip for two. Below are five recommended hotels:
1) Portrait Roma – exquisite hotel with a roof terrace in Via Boccia di Leone, 23
2) Hotel Artemide – hotel with spa near the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma
3) Lifestyle Suites Rome – townhouse with bar/lounge near Piazza Navona
4) Residenza Napoleone III – bed & breakfast in the centre and within walking distance from the Spanish Steps
5) Daniel’s Hotel – excellent 4-star hotel near the Pantheon