Is it your first time visiting Rome and are you looking for a good place to stay in town? You’ve come to the right place. Here you will find information on where to stay in Rome, the best areas, and accommodation options for any budget – from the best hotels in Rome, to good hostels and Airbnb.
It’s easy to see why Rome is one of the most visited cities in the world. The city is full of history; it has some of the most remarkable archeological sites you can imagine; a thriving cultural life and art scene and – despite the crowds of tourists – it’s managed to retain all of its local character.
Rome is dirty, yet charming; chaotic, yet peaceful; ancient but oh so modern. The beating heart of Italy, the Eternal City is also one of the most expensive cities in Europe. So, if you are hoping to find a good accommodation deal, you will have to look very carefully.
Worried? Don’t be! Continue reading this post to discover where to stay in Rome.
Where To Stay In Rome – The Best Neighborhoods
The Safest Areas of Rome
The center of Rome is generally safe and where you stay is mostly just a matter of what you are looking for. Prati is probably a safe bet as it is well connected by public transportation (Metro Line A stops there); it is close to the Vatican and Castel Sant’Angelo and it’s easy to reach other parts of the historic center of Rome. Another great safe area is that of the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo – it’s a bit more touristy, but you will find plenty of shops, cafés and restaurants, and it’s actually quieter than you’d imagine.
Monti and Prati – Best Areas for Sightseeing
Monti is the area close to the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill, and at a short distance from the Baths of Caracalla. From there, you can easily reach many other popular landmarks in town. A good alternative if your priority when visiting Rome is sightseeing would be Prati. From there, you will have easy access to St Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Museums, and the the Sistine Chapel.
Look for places to stay in Prati here.
Trastevere – Best Area for Nightlife
Easily one of the most charming areas in Rome, Trastevere is full of character and has the best nightlife in the city, with plenty of bars and pubs. During the day, you will find cafés and a few good restaurants. As the name says, it’s located across the Tiber River from the historic center. The only issue with this neighborhood is that there is no metro stop – so you will have to learn how to navigate the bus system, or alternatively walk or use taxis.
Look for places to stay Trastevere here.
Testaccio – Best Area for Foodies
Testaccio is another neighborhood of Rome that has retained its local character. It’s packed to the brim with good restaurants and local eateries where you can eat for a fraction of the price you’d pay in the historic center. The bonus? Testaccio is served by Piramide metro station and right next to Trastevere. The main drawback, however, is that there aren’t that many places to stay.
Look for places to stay in Testaccio here.
Historic Center – Best Area for First Timers
The Historic Center – Centro Storico – is where to stay in Rome if it is your first time in the city. The area of the Pantheon is charming, though I am biased towards Campo de’ Fiori! There are a few issues you may encounter if you opt to stay in the Historic Center of Rome. First of all, the prices: budget options in this area of Rome are a bit more limited. Secondly: no metro station – but you can easily walk to Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps) for line A. Finally, it’s a bit more crowded and chaotic than you may wish. If none of this is a bother, definitely stay there!
Look for places to stay in the Centro Storico here.
Esquilino – Best Area for Budget Travelers
A mere metro stop from Termini Station, Vittorio Emanuele, in the heart of Esquilino, is one of the most budget friendly areas in Rome. Another stop and you will be in San Giovanni, close to St. John in the Lateran Church (still Esquilino) which is way more local. The bonus? Lots of local eateries.
Look for places to stay in Esquilino here.
BONUS! Aventino – Most Romantic Area In Rome
If you have a knack for gorgeous vistas and romance, then the Aventine is where to stay in Rome. You won’t have shortage of interesting sights: the Orange Garden (Giardino degli Aranci) is there, as well as the famous keyhole for impressive view of St. Peter’s Basilica. The main drawback is that it’s a bit off the tourist path so you won’t find such a great selection of places to stay – you need to book in advance.
Look for places to stay in Aventine Hill here.
Unsafe Areas of Rome
Finally, it is worth mentioning where not to stay in Rome. Much like in any other big city, the area around the main train station – Stazione Termini, in Rome – can be a bit dodgy, with pickpocketing being a bit of an issue. The only other areas I’d recommend avoiding are Tor Bella Monaca, Torre Maura and Rebibbia – but they are so far away from the center that you wouldn’t want to stay there anyways!
The Best Places To Stay In Rome
Located between via Nazionale and the Colosseum, Monti is the best area to stay Rome if you are visiting the city for the first time. During Roman times, this was the part of the city where gladiators lived. Fast forward to 2021, and Monti offers hipster bars, coffee shops and good accommodation options steps away from the Colosseum and Roman Forum, and one metro stop from Termini the city’s main transportation hub.
The one thing that is somehow amiss are good restaurants – but for that, you can easily get to the historic center!
Best places to stay in Monti:
For easy access to St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, Prati is definitely where to stay in Rome. This part of town is really well connected to the rest of town, so a great place to stay if you want to roam the city. It’s incredibly airy, with nice boulevards and lots of trees; it’s super safe and affluent; and there are some good restaurants and excellent hotels.
Best places to stay in Prati:
The Tridente – an area of Rome that is includes among three streets that all start in Piazza del Popolo and head south, forming a triangle – corresponds to the Historic Center of Rome, AKA the Centro Storico. It’s one of the best places to stay in Rome if it is your first time in the city, and by all means the best area if you are keen on staying close to Piazza Navona, Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. Depending on where you stay in the historic center you will also be close to the lovely Villa Borghese, a great art gallery surrounded by the most beautiful park in the city, overlooking Piazza del Popolo.
It has some good restaurants and excellent trattoria – most of them in the lovely Jewish Ghetto. If you have the budget to splurge, this is where to stay in Rome for sure.
Best places to stay in the Centro Storico:
Across the Tiber River, Trastevere is a maze of cobbled alleys, charming corners, nice plazas, and lots and lots of good bars, and it’s where to stay in Rome if you are interested in having a good night out or two. Definitely avoid it if you are a light sleeper, though! Trastevere is also home to one of the most famous restaurants in Rome – Cencio la Parolaccia, where you literally pay for the staff to talk to you in the most colorful and vulgar manner. Trastevere has no metro stop – you will have to walk everywhere, get a taxi, or use the bus.
Best places to stay in Trastevere:
Neighboring Trastevere, Testaccio and Ostiense are among the nicest neighborhoods in Rome. Testaccio is where you will find Porta Portese, the most famous flea market in Rome. Ostiense is where Roma Tre University is located. Attractions in the area include the non-Catholic Cemetery of Rome, St. Paul Outside the Walls Basilica, the Pyramid of Cestius and the Mouth of Truth. The area is packed with good trattorie and bars and connected to the rest of Rome by bus or by metro (Piramide).
Best places to stay in Testaccio:
You will hear all sorts of things about Esquilino and some people will tell you that this is not where to stay in Rome, but I dissent. Aside from dodgy Termini Station, it is a perfectly safe area, with lots of budget friendly options, with a nice local feel, good restaurants and trattorie and some interesting sights. This is where the Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano (St. John in the Lateran Basilica) is located; and you will find some of the nicest and lesser known squares in Rome (Vittorio Emanuele and Re di Roma). The bonus? It’s super well connected to the rest of the city by metro.
The best places to stay in Esquilino:
If you are all about the views, forget all the other areas of Rome mentioned in this post and head straight to the Aventine Hill. Home of the Orange Garden, it’s one of the prime locations for incredible views of the city.
The best places to stay in Aventine Hill
Further readings about Rome
If you are planning a trip to Rome, these other posts will come in useful:
- Where Is Rome?
- How To See Rome In 3 Days
- The Most Famous Landmarks In Rome
- The Nicest Neighborhoods In Rome
- The Nicest Parks In Rome
- The Best Airbnbs In Rome
- The Best Romantic Hotels In Rome
- The Best Hotels For Families In Rome
- The Best Hotels Near The Pantheon
- The Best Hotels With Pool In Rome
- The Best Hotels In Trastevere
- The Best Tips For Visiting Rome
- Where To See The Lovely Cats Of Rome
- Which Are The Seven Hills Of Rome?
- The Best Virtual Tours Of Rome
- How To Make Supplì Al Telefono