As the saying goes, ‘all roads lead to Rome’ and if you’re someone looking for an exciting destination for your next adventure, I recommend you get on one of those roads. Overflowing with history, filled with beautiful architecture, fantastic restaurants, and incredible art, it’s easy to see why it’s still one of the most visited cities in the world. Unfortunately, this also means it can often get a little crowded, ruining the experience of a lifetime. However, for the savvy solo traveller, taking a Roman holiday in February will ensure that you get the ‘Eternal City’ all to yourself (almost!).
Here are a few of the highlights of an early spring getaway.
Saving a Penny or Two
Visiting a top destination off-season is guaranteed to win you some excellent deals, especially when it comes to accommodation, which can be expensive. For those looking to enjoy the finer things in Rome whilst remaining frugal, visiting in off-peak times is the way to go.
I’ve always thought summer to be the least appealing time to visit this busy city: it’s hot, humid, and there are so many more people than in the quieter times. There’s nothing worse than exploring the tourist trails in the sweltering heat and jostling crowds; but the cooler climes of early spring provide the perfect conditions for taking in the sights.
Avoid the Crowds
This must be the best thing about travelling out of season: you’ll get the place all to yourself. With emptier streets and shorter queues, you’ll get the best photo opportunities and enjoy a far more relaxing experience. Just be sure to avoid the half-term surge, which often falls in this month.
Top Six Must-See Attractions
St. Peter’s Basilica
Over five million people visit this monumental church every year, so if you were only to see one tourist attraction while here, make it this one. Often considered to be the ‘greatest church in all of Christianity’, the Papal Basilica of St. Peter has become synonymous with the Vatican and is at the top of most visitors’ lists. Not only is it an architectural beauty but it’s also the burial site of Saint Peter.
7:00am to 7:00pm
The Sistine Chapel
You can’t really visit St. Peter’s and not see the Sistine Chapel, arguably the most famous chapel in the world. Covered in ornate works by world-famous artists including Botticelli, Perugino, Rosselli, Pinturicchio and, of course, the great Michelangelo, you’ll be awe-struck by the sheer beauty of this great building. Take your time and really soak up the significance and history of this site.
Monday to Saturday: 9:00 am to 6:00 pm (last entry at 4:00 pm)
Last Sunday of the month: 9:00 am to 2:00 pm (last entry at 12:30 pm)
The Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill
You can’t really visit Rome without witnessing its most famous monument and walking in the footsteps of some of history’s most renowned figures. You really can feel the history seeping from the very walls of these great structures. Once you’ve soaked up the magic, take in the beauty of the city from the vantage point of Palatine Hill, which will be wonderfully peaceful during this quieter month.
8:30am to 4:30pm (until 15th February, post 15th open until 5:00pm)
Trastevere Neighbourhood Walk
As a solo traveller, this neighbourhood walk is one of the best ways to get to know the area and perhaps meet a few like-minded explorers. The Trastevere quarter is vibrant and fun, giving you a taste of authentic local life and you’ll find lots of independent artisan shops, cafes, and bars. If you have a few spare hours, taking a leisurely stroll down one of the inviting streets is a wonderful way to while about the time.
Where to Stay
Nova Roma Guest House – Centrally located, this guest house is perfect for independent visitors. With free Wi-fi, your own fridge and a kettle in your room, you’ll have privacy and comfort all in the heart of the city.
Lucky Holiday Rooms – Just a fifteen-minute walk from the Colosseum, this accommodation offers affordable comfort with air-conditioned rooms and Wi-Fi. Ensuite, TV and unique decoration feature in all the rooms.
Bed and Breakfast Agli Horti Sallustiani – With simple and clean rooms, this B&B offers guests an Italian breakfast as well as private bathrooms complete with the essentials.
How to Get There
The best route is to fly from the UK to Rome Fiumicino airport (FCO). You’ll find a number of affordable flights during the off-peak season, just be sure to avoid the half-term surge in prices. There are hundreds of flights a week with airlines including EasyJet, Delta, and British Airways.
I always highly recommend pre-booking a shuttle ride from the airport, which will not only save you the hassle of having to find transport when you land, but also save you money.
- UK to Rome Flight Time: 2 hours 33 minutes
- FCO to Rome Distance: 17 kilometres
- Shuttle Direct Transfer Time: 45 minutes
About Shuttle Direct
Shuttle Direct is one of the leading providers of airport transfers throughout Europe. Our careful and friendly drivers ensure that our customers get from A to B as smoothly and safely as possible. Whether your holiday is coming to an end or just about to begin, we’ll ensure it’s hassle-free.