Europe has a number of elite tourist destinations. You can party, spend a romantic weekend, or enjoy an adventurous outing depending on your choice of the place. Rome is believed to be among the foremost of European gems. Admittedly, budget travel isn’t the first thing that Rome reminds us of. With its architectural brilliance and cultural heritage, Rome seems like one of those destinations which would be a bit taxing for your wallet. It takes a keen eye to spot an opportunity to enjoy your time in Rome without throwing away money. Thankfully, we have got you covered in that domain. Just sit back and read on to find out all the free things you can do in Rome and how a shoestring budget can be enough for your Roman holiday.
Villa Borghese Gardens
A large chunk of Rome’s greenery resides in the Villa Borghese Gardens. Situated a stone throw’s distance from Piazza del Popolo and the Spanish Steps, Villa Borghese Gardens is free to visit all around the year. You can explore the 80-hectare area of the garden that was planned and developed in the early 17th century and then redesigned in 1903.KNOW MORE
A tour of the Borghese Gallery is a must while at Villa Borghese. Check these out!
Via Appia Antica
Via Appia Antica or the Old Roman Appian Way bears witness to a lot of Roman history. It was an important road used to transport troops to the southern part of the country. A part of this road is now included in nature and archaeological park. On Sundays, the road is closed for traffic, and this is the perfect time to take a walk on Via Appia Antica and let yourself become one with the history.KNOW MORE
Planning to see the Roman Catacombs? They're really close to Via Appia Antica
Trevi Fountain is a Rome essential, given its prime position in the city and its sheer grandeur. After prolonged restoration and refurbishment, the fountain is even more impressive than it was before. The fountain has stood in Rome since 19 BCE. If you are in Rome, you will be able to spend some time around this spectacular landmark for free.KNOW MORE
Interested in a walking tour of Central Rome? Check these popular ones.
Ancient Rome still has a significant amount of remnant left in the world. The Pantheon is one of the most well-preserved structures of Rome’s legendary past. The building was built and dedicated to Pagan Gods between 118 and 125 CE. The structure replaced the Pantheon built in 27 BCE. This brilliant exponent of history can also be visited free of cost.KNOW MORE
Mon to Fri - 8:30 AM to 6:00 PM
Sat - 8:30 AM to 7:30 PM
Accademia Di San Luca
Founded in the final quarter of the 16th century, Accademia Di San Luca now exists as the Accademia Nazionale di San Luca. The academy statute stated that each academician will donate one piece of work to the galley, which is still held in high regard. If you visit Accademia Di San Luca, you will witness some of the famous works by Raffaello, Canova, Van Dyk to name a few.KNOW MORE
Sun - Closed
The Roman Baroque style of architecture finds some of its best specimens in Rome. With its asymmetrical butterfly-like design, the Spanish Steps are another important free attraction in the Eternal City. The 138 steps that form this famous attraction are a great place to soak in the Roman vibe. The Spanish Steps are also quite close to a number of other Roman landmarks.KNOW MORE
St. Peter’s Basilica
St. Peter’s Basilica is one of the many places in Rome that is equally important to the religious and cultural history of the world. Forming an integral part of the Roman skyline, St. Peter’s Basilica is one of the largest churches in the world. You can gain entry at St. Peter’s Basilica for free. If you get to the place early, you will be able to squeeze in a lot of sightseeing in the area in a short span of time.KNOW MORE
Oct-March 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
You cannot leave Vatican City without visiting the Vatican Museums! Check these combo deals
Trastevere derives its name from the river Tevere. The neighborhood once used to be the haunt for the working class populace. Currently, it is one of the best places to find the authentic Roman soul, one that does not come with a steep price tag. You may sit around in the piazza or just explore the eateries in the area as the sun sets on the city.KNOW MORE
If you want to experience Rome like a local, you should definitely head to the Jewish Ghetto of the city. This part of the city was home to the oldest Jewish community in Europe. You can roam the streets of the neighborhood and absorb centuries of history. You should also head to the museums and temples in the area to get a better outlook of Jewish life in Rome.KNOW MORE
Piazza Navone is one of the largest and most elaborate piazza squares in Rome. The square houses three attractive fountain systems as well. In the background, you will be able to see the Church of Sant'Agnese, which gives Piazza Navone the visual grandeur. A number of musicians and artists ply their trade in Piazza Navone and that should make for an entertaining experience for you.KNOW MORE
Domenica al Museo
By order, many of the museums in Rome allow free entry on the first Sunday of every month. You can take advantage of this day to visit some of the most influential cultural institutions in Rome including the Colosseum and Roman Forum. Although the crowd will be more than usual, setting out early should do the trick.KNOW MORE
Campo de Fiori
Another prominent piazza in Rome, Campo de Fiori was once a field of flowers. The piazza was paved in the mid-15th century. Currently, the piazza is one of the most flourishing parts of the city, given its popularity among businesses. As you spend your time in the area, you will be able to appreciate structures like Palazzo Orsini that lie in the vicinity.KNOW MORE
The seven hills of Rome are well known. The Gianicolo Hill, however, doesn’t make the cut and is called the eighth hill of Rome. It is the second highest peak in Rome and as such offers a sweeping view of the city ahead. Gianicolo Hill also has the unofficial accreditation of Rome’s lover’s lane, as you are likely to find out during your walk.KNOW MORE
Santa Maria del Popolo
Santa Maria del Popolo was erected on a site that was thought to be haunted by the ghost of Roman Emperor Nero. The interiors of the basilica are a departure from the contemporary structures. The ceilings are unremarkable while the walls are elaborately decorated. There are quite a few important works of art by Caravaggio in the basilica.KNOW MORE
Sun - 8:00 AM -7:30 PM
Stadio dei Marmi
Stadio dei Marmi is an open-air sports stadium that was built during the regime of Benito Mussolini. The fascist ideals of the time are leveraged in its faux Greco-Roman statues. The 59 statues represent various sports. A closer inspection of the statues will reveal the attention that was paid to ensure that the figures have features to the liking of the regime.KNOW MORE
More Cheap Things to do in Rome
- Take an elevator to the top of Altare Della Patria and take in the panoramic view of the Eternal City. You can see the Piazza Venezia and other popular Roman landmarks.
- Explore the Capitoline Hill and Museums. The palace was conceptualized and designed by Michelangelo. The museums are also worth a visit.
- Rent a boat at the Borghese lake and discover the reason this place is called the lung of Rome. You can rent a boat for as little as €3.
- Visit the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill with a single combo ticket to save time and money.
- Take a nightly tour of Rome and explore various nocturnal aspects of the city. Some tours are focused on exploring the urban legends prevalent in the Eternal City over the years.
Tips to Visit Rome on a Budget
- Plan your trip to the Borghese Gardens on the first Sunday of the month so that you can pair it up with free entry to the Borghese Gallery.
- Make sure you visit the crypts of the St. Peter’s Basilica, known as Vatican Grottoes, that houses the tombs of numerous popes and 10th-century royalties. Entry to the Vatican Grottoes is free of cost.
- Grab some food from the carts in the Jewish Quarters of Rome. Not only are the dishes cheap and delicious, but they are also often true to the heritage.
- Visit Teatro Marcello, an open-air theatre at the heart of the Jewish Ghetto of Rome, which once could host as many as 20,000 spectators.
- Get your bookings confirmed online and go for combo guided tours via Headout to make the most of the money you spend.
Ready for your budget visit to Rome?
Here are a few more guides that should help you plan your visit.