Rome like a local: insider tips

Discover the authentic charm of Rome like a local, avoiding the crowded routes to experience the real spirit of the Eternal City. Our insider’s guide reveals the secrets of Rome, inviting you to explore its charming, cobblestone streets and vibrant piazzas bursting with real Roman culture.

Dive into the secrets of the Eternal City

Discover Rome from a whole new perspective with our insider tips – keep reading and get inspired!👇👇👇

🌳Secret gardens & obscure museums 

In the charming Gianicolo district, the Orto Botanico is a tranquil escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. This garden, part of the historic Palazzo Corsini estate, has been around since the 13th century and houses a wonderful variety of plants. It’s the perfect place to unwind or explore the world of botany. 

Over in the same district, you’ll find the Museo delle Mura, a tribute to Rome’s impressive defenses. Find it located within the ancient Aurelian walls and enjoy breathtaking views and a unique historical journey. 

Rome like a local: insider tips - Arco Botanico
Standing under the enchanting Arco Botanico, where nature’s artistry meets historical charm

🏛️Eclectic architectural marvels 

Tucked away from mainstream itineraries, Quartiere Coppedè is an architectural gemstone. Dreamt up by Gino Coppedè in the 1900s, this fantastical quarter blends Art Nouveau, Gothic, Baroque, and Art Deco with urban elements. The frog-themed Fontana delle Rane is at its heart, surrounded by whimsical villas and palaces. Add it to your list ASAP. 

🛕Rome’s underground mysteries 

Beneath the vibrant Via Salaria, the Catacombs of Priscilla are like a hidden treasure. There, you’ll discover that the winding tunnels are full of stories from early Christian times, complete with ancient frescoes that have stood the test of time. It’s a touching journey into Rome’s sacred history.  

Rome like a local: insider tips - Greek Chapel in the Catacombs of Priscilla
The Greek Chapel in the Catacombs of Priscilla, a hidden gem of early Christian art in Rome

🏟️Cool spots in Rome 

The Esquilino district in Rome is like a colorful tapestry woven with layers of history, from the Magic Door to the Santa Bibiana church

On the other hand, Pigneto, once a quiet rural spot, has now become a lively place bursting with creativity and a mix of cultures, making it a unique Roman experience whether it’s day or night. Find it in Rome’s Prenestino-Labicano area with charming art nouveau style and many international students. 

🍝Local cuisine 

Testaccio, the heart of Roman cuisine, is a food lover’s paradise. It’s where you can enjoy classic Roman dishes like a perfectly cooked carbonara or get adventurous with the innovative trapizzino. When you explore the Testaccio market, you’ll feel the local vibes, and the mix of international flavors that reflects the neighborhood’s fascinating history. 

If you’re hungry for more Roman food adventures, read our guides: Eat near Rome’s most famous monuments and Best Street Food in Rome. They’re packed with mouthwatering local flavors and historical charm! 

Rome like a local: insider tips - dishes of pasta Carbonara
A plate of rich and creamy Carbonara, Rome’s signature pasta delight

🧵Exploring Monti: artisanal experiences & aperitivo 

Monti is much more than your typical shopping district. It’s full of unique tailors, vintage gems, and handcrafted treasures. If you’re a savvy shopper who values sustainability and top-notch craftsmanship, this is your spot. 

And when evening falls, Monti transforms into an aperitivo haven. It’s a beloved tradition where Romans get together to enjoy delicious bites and sip on fine wines or expertly crafted cocktails. Join them and live unfogettable moments in the warm glow of Monti’s historic corners! 

Summing up… 

In a nutshell, experiencing Rome like a local is all about discovering its hidden gems, away from all the tourist traps. It’s about spotting the little details, from cool hangout spots to off-the-beaten-path activities that unveil the city’s timeless charm. So, when you go on your Roman adventure, let our tips be your compass to authentic and fun experiences. 

Rome like a local: insider tips: FAQs

What hidden gems can I discover in the Gianicolo district of Rome?

In Gianicolo, you can find the tranquil Orto Botanico, a historic botanical garden, perfect for a peaceful escape. Also, don't miss the Museo delle Mura, an underrated museum offering a unique historical journey and stunning views, located within the ancient Aurelian walls.

Where can I find unique architecture in Rome?

Quartiere Coppedè is a must-visit for architecture enthusiasts. This off-the-beaten-path area showcases a blend of Art Nouveau, Gothic, Baroque, and Art Deco styles, including the whimsical Fontana delle Rane and surrounding villas.

Can I explore Rome's underground history?

Yes, the Catacombs of Priscilla beneath Via Salaria offer a fascinating glimpse into early Christian history with ancient frescoes and winding tunnels filled with stories.

What are some cool, less-touristy spots in Rome?

The Esquilino district offers a mix of history and culture, while Pigneto is known for its creativity, multicultural atmosphere, and art nouveau style. Both are great for experiencing Rome’s vibrant local life.

Where can I enjoy authentic Roman cuisine?

Head to the Testaccio neighborhood, the heart of Roman cuisine. Here, you can savor classic dishes like carbonara or try innovative food like trapizzino. The Testaccio market is also a great spot to immerse in local culture and taste a variety of international flavors.

Any recommendations for shopping and evening experiences in Rome?

Monti is an excellent district for artisanal shopping, boasting unique tailors, vintage stores, and handcrafted items. In the evening, it transforms into a hotspot for aperitivo, where you can enjoy delicious bites, wines, and cocktails.

Where can I find more information about Roman food?

For more on Roman cuisine, check out our guides "Eat near Rome’s most famous monuments" and "Best Street Food in Rome." They offer insights into local flavors and combine culinary experiences with historical charm.

🛎️Where to stay in Rome?

Looking for affordable accommodation with a local vibe? The MEININGER Roma Termini is the place to be—the perfect launchpad for city exploration whether you’re a solo adventurer, a family or any other type of traveler. 

Address: Via San Martino della Battaglia 16, 00185 Rome

Visiting Rome soon?

The MEININGER Roma Termini is in a lovingly renovated old building close to the main train station Termini. MEININGER has good public transport connections and from the Castro Pretorio station you can take a short ride to the Roman Forum and Colosseum and go in search of the ancient Romans.

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