10 Most Picturesque Piazzas in Rome
Around nearly every corner in Rome, there is a charming piazza. Piazzas in Rome are the central gathering place of public life. They are the perfect spot to enjoy a gelato, to people watch, or to marvel at Rome’s architectural beauty. From grandiose piazzas, like Piazza del Popolo, to the smaller, quieter corners of the city, these 10 piazzas are a must see when visiting Rome.
Rome’s 10 Most Picturesque Piazzas
1. Piazza Navona – This may take the cake for the most breathtaking piazza in Rome. Once an ancient circus of Domitian arena, this oblong-shaped piazza is a common gathering point for locals and tourists alike. Furthermore, get the chance to marvel at Bernini’s famous Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (Four Rivers Fountain), which is particularly stunning at night.
2. Piazza del Popolo – One of the largest piazzas in the city of Rome, Piazza del Popolo’s symmetry will blow you away. Center stage is an enormous Egyptian obelisk, and in the backdrop are the two twin churches of Santa Maria. For a fantastic vantage point, head up the edge of the piazza and walk up the stairs to Pincio terrace. It’s a perfect spot to marvel at Rome’s rooftop views during sunset.
3. Piazza Mattei – Tucked away in the backstreets of the Jewish Ghetto you’ll find a peaceful piazza decorated with Giacomo della Porta’s Fontana delle Tartarughe (Turtle Fountain). Stop by for an aperitivo at one of the local bars, or simply for a moment to relax.
4. Campo de’ Fiori – Farmer’s Market by day and restaurant and bar scene by night, this piazza is a must visit while in the Eternal City. Stop by to taste the local, seasonal flavors of the market, and learn some local tips from shop vendors. Then, head by after sunset for an Aperol Spritz and fabulous people watching during aperitivo hours.
5. Piazza di Santa Maria in Trastevere – This popular hangout spot for locals and tourists lures in the crowds with its inviting fountain, as well as the surrounding restaurants and bars. In the left corner of the piazza is the church of Santa Maria in Trastevere, which houses some spectacular mosaics that are a must-see.
6. Piazza di Spagna – Home to the famous Spanish Steps, this piazza is lined with some of Rome’s most luxurious shopping. Stop by around sunset and climb to the top of the Spanish Steps for an incredible view at one of the city’s most iconic spots.
7. Piazza della Madonna dei Monti – In the neighborhood just north of the Colosseum, this is a perfect local square to grab a bite to eat after touring the ancient Roman arena. In the evening, this is a go-to gathering place for young locals. To join the fun, grab a beer or glass of wine and head to the piazza.
8. Piazza del Campidoglio – Designed by Michelangelo, this geometric wonder is also home to Rome’s Capitoline Museum and town hall. For an unbeatable view of the Colosseum and Roman Forum, climb the stairs, and make your way to the balcony on the rear side of the piazza.
9. Piazza della Rotonda – Home to one of Rome’s architectural wonders, the Pantheon. This is a perfect point to do some sightseeing, as well as grab an espresso or cocktail at one of the bordering restaurants and marvel at the waves of visitors amongst the once ancient Roman temple.
10. Piazza San Pietro – Probably the most renowned, and better known as Saint Peter’s Square. Step inside Vatican City and be awe inspired by the beauty that frames Saint Peter’s Basilica. Piazza San Pietro is home to the largest church in the world, and a pronounced symbol of the Vatican. For arguably the best sunrise view in Rome, climb to the top of Saint Peter’s Basilica at opening hours. It’s also a great way to avoid the daytime crowds.