Rome, a city of power, beauty and splendor. One would wonder how Rome emerged and survived through the centuries when many other cities that existed alongside it have been consumed by time and events. Rome was and remained strong.
Though an ancient city, Rome is a perfect blend of the old and the new civilization. The classical and the contemporary. In discussing the ancient civilization, Rome cannot be pushed aside and equally any decent discussion on modern development without mentioning Rome would be considered as being inadequate.
What makes Rome unique?
Rome is not only unique, Rome is great!
The uniqueness of Rome stems from its history and its culture and I hope that this piece of material will stimulate you to come with me to Rome.
The History of Rome
History had it that Rome started as an Iron Age hut village founded sometimes in the 8th century. Over the years and because of the fertility of Italy, people from diverse backgrounds began to settle in Italy and by extension, in Rome.
In terms of administration, Rome developed from a monarchical form of government to an oligarchic republic and eventually to a large empire covering almost the whole of Europe to India to the east and North Africa to the south. Roman Empire as it were then was seen as the controlling power of the world.
The power of the Roman Empire was further confirmed from biblical accounts where perpetrators of serious crimes were often sent to Rome for final judgement. The Emperor of the Roman Empire appoints Governors over territories such as Judea (Jerusalem, etc) in those days.
Interestingly, there remains today some elements of the administrative mechanisms of Rome in governments. The principle of delegation of powers by the central authority of governance to the centripetal authorities within the polity is a system that derived its origin from the system of governance in the ancient Roman Empire.
Institutions in Rome
Vatican City – (Citta Del Vaticano)
The Vatican is a city state within Rome and its the world headquarters of the Catholic Church. The Vatican has the Pope as the head of all its affairs. The residence of the Pope has been claimed to have been built upon the tomb of Apostle Peter.
It is important to mention that the Vatican is a “city state” within Rome City. This is one of the uniqueness of Rome – A city having a “Country” within it.
The Vatican operates as a city state with diplomatic relationship with 170 countries around the world. The Vatican maintains diplomatic interactions with the United Nations and many other international agencies as a sovereign state.
The Vatican City houses the St. Peter’s Square and St. Peter’s Basilica.
The St. Peter’s Square
St. Peter’s square is the colonnade that leads to St. Peter’s basilica. It is the epicenter of the Vatican City. Story had it that this is the area where Apostle Peter and many other Christians were martyred.
The design and re-design of the square over the years has made it to be one of the greatest places to visit in the world. In fact, it is one of the top places of attraction in the world. Looking at the center of the basilica from different parts gives different impressions which is more of an optical illusion.
The St. Peter’s Basilica
St. Peter’s basilica is the largest church in the world. It is situated in the center of the Vatican. A visit to Rome without seeing the basilica is incomplete.
There are interesting stories about the basilica. There is one that says that it was built around the spot where the Apostle Peter was martyred. Although, there are other arguments that the real location of his martyrdom was somewhere around the Basilica.
The Basilica opens throughout the year from 7:00 till 18:00 every day except Wednesday (if there is a function by the Pope) when it opens from 12:00 and it is free.
Apart from the imposing structure of the basilica, the interior of the building is a masterpiece.
Uniqueness of St. Peter’s Basilica and St. Peter’s Square
Many people of faith have purposely brought their fiancees to Rome to propose to her. While many couples have chosen to have their marriages solemnised in Rome at the Basilica.
A good number of people also visit Rome yearly to celebrate wedding anniversaries and/or renew wedding vows.
Such is the spirituality that have been attached to the St. Peter’s Square and the Basilica.
If you are planning your marriage proposal, wedding or wedding vows renewal and wedding anniversary, the Vatican City would be a nice place for your consideration.
The Culture of Rome
Here we will be considering another feature that makes Rome unique and great – The Culture of Rome. By the culture of Rome, we will be considering its people and their ways of life which include, daily living and food.
The People of Rome
History has it that the ancient people of Rome were from a tribe called Latins. Possibly that is the origin of the Latin language. They were farmers and traders who became very successful.
As population of the city began to grow, the Romans delved into many other areas of human endeavor including engineering and architecture. This is why there are many ancient edifices around Rome. Many of these structures have been in existence for over a thousand years.
At present, Rome has over 2m people. This comprises of settlers from many parts of the world some of whose ancestors came to Rome sometimes in history. Many people in Rome today who were from immigrant ancestors cannot trace their origin outside Rome.
Enjoying the beauty of Rome
Today Rome is a lively place. A visitor to Rome can never be bored. Beginning from the Colosseum through the catacombs to the Pantheon, there are many places of interest worthy of visitation when you arrive in Rome.
This is the world most famous historical site built for entertainment. The colosseum was built about 2000 years ago and still functional. The colosseum is the largest Amphitheatre ever built. The colosseum is a massive edifice with so much about it.
A visit to Rome without time at the Colosseum is an incomplete trip.
Visit to the Colosseum cost a token which is dependent upon the package you chose.
The pantheon derived its name from the meaning of the word which means a group of respected and important people.
The pantheon was an ancient Roman temple dedicated to the gods of ancient Rome.
Visit to the pantheon is free except you request for a guided tour and this can be as low as €5.00 or more depending on your preferences.
You can check HERE for other attractions, their availability and tickets.
Best Time to go to Rome
The weather in Rome is usually mild. Hence that makes visit to Rome to be attractive anytime of the year.
From general assessment, the period April to June and late September to October have been adjudged best time to visit Rome. This is because the pressure of many visitors will be less. There is the summer rush in June and from July to early September, schools around the world naturally be on holiday.
Visiting Rome – Documentation
Just as it is with other Countries in the world, visiting Rome for non-EU (European Union) requires some form of documentation. Aside from EU citizens, visitors from other Countries to Italy are in different categories of requirement.
Citizens of some countries are completely exempted from Visa requirements while some require Visa upon arrival, eVisa and Travel cards. Please check here for your Country’s Visa requirement while making arrangements.
Flying into Rome
Flying into Rome from any part of the world is made simple and you can compares fares HERE.
You can use this skyscanner banner
There are three airports around Rome that you can fly into depending on the origin of your flight.
- Leonardo Da Vinci Airport, Fiumicino
- Ciampino Airport
- Rome Urbe Airport
From the three airports, Fiumicino being an international airport is the largest. Train services run from the airports to Rome city center. Fiumicino is farthest and train tickets is at a minimum of €8.00.
Getting into Rome from the airport
Enjoy the wonderful services of efficient Hoppa drivers for your airport transfer from any of Rome’s airport to the city and back to the airport at the end of your holiday.
Book your airport transfer HERE
Commuting around the Rome city
There is the public transport which comprise of buses, train and trams.
There are subway, urban, suburban and commuter trains. The fares are dependent on the type of ticket and duration. There is also the night bus.
For your comfort and some adventure on a memorable visit to Rome, you may hire a car from the airport and cruise into Rome. For car hire please check HERE with the world’s biggest online car rental service.
Places to stay while in Rome
From Rome’s downtown to the well urbanized areas, there are thousands of places to stay. Depending on where you intend to visit while in Rome and your budget, you can visit www.booking.com to book your accommodation. Let booking.com make your stay a memorable experience when you come with me to Rome.
Booking.com remains the number one online booking website with so much to offer both the customers and visitors to the website.
Boat Cruise in Rome
To further enjoy your holiday in Rome, there are boat cruises to different destinations at reasonable prices depending on the cruise package. From fiumicino Let’s Ferry connect with many destinations in Europe and the mediterranean.
Apart from the usual services, regularly, Let’s Ferry shipping companies provide different OFFERS to compensate their customers.
Multi Currency Borderless Account
You will need to change money to the Euro currency if you are visiting Rome from any Country that is not within the Euro Currency zone.
Most times there is the hassles of transferring and/or changing money at high inter-bank rates with delays.
To avoid these and have more control over your money while on holiday, opening a multi-currency borderless account HERE will be a wonderful idea.
Eating in Rome
While in Rome eating is no big deal as you can get breakfast for about €3.00. Lunch for about €7.00 and dinner for about €13.00. Wine and treat can cost about €5.00. On an average of €28.00 per person per day, your feeding in Rome is sorted. Of course there are high end canteens where food cost more than laid out here.
You can be sure of getting the real pizza and pasta in Rome.
It is important that you check the notices as there are places where eating is not permitted.
On a cautionary note, a visitor advised that you should ask for an itemized bill when you eat in the restaurants. Also you need to know what to pay for and what not to pay for. For instances in some parts of Italy, it is illegal to charge per head for bread, rather, charges should be per basket, but many restaurants do not comply with that law.
Same for drinks with your meal. You need to ascertain of the drink is a complement for your food or you will be paying for it separately. These pieces of information will help your budget.
The beauty of Rome and the spirituality of the Vatican City together with the splendour of the entire city of Rome is a great way to ease tensions and douse the pressure of day-to-day living.
Few days in Rome will help to re-energise anyone emotionally and physically.