Rome was first called the Eternal City back in the 1st century BC, when it already was a very old but not aging city. From century to century it has been gaining momentum, power and magnificence: time has turned out to be powerless against it. Streets, squares and bridges of today's Rome are the reflection of its centuries-old history. Let's take a walk along some of the most famous streets and try to feel its unique atmosphere.
More than a street or avenue, more emblematic than any bridge, this bridge across the river Tiber is the gate to Castel Sant’Angelo. Here you can easily spend a long time simply enjoying the view and talking photos: if facing west you can see the famous San Peter Basilica; to the north - the castle of Saint Angelo; and to the south - a great view of the entire old city.
The history of the bridge goes back to the 2nd century AD. Originally it was known as Bridge of Hadrian, named after the Roman emperor Hadrian. In the 7th century, Pope Gregory I renamed the bridge by its present name, inspired by a legend telling about an angel who appeared to announce the end of the plague that ravaged a great part of the population during that time.
If you are at Piazza Venezia and have not yet visited the Colosseum, you can walk towards it along Via dei Fori Imperiali passing by Forum of Trajan, Forum of Augustus, and Forum of Nerva on both sides of the street. The time of its construction goes back to the Mussolini’s regime and his idea of new Italian Empire. That is why this street crosses the main monuments of the old Roman Empire. It's very long and impressive but please don't forget about pickpockets who operate in this area with particular intensity.
Via del Corso will probably be your main point of reference while staying in Rome as it goes right across the historic center. It has Piazza del Popolo at the top end and Piazza Venezia at the bottom. Walking along the street, you will see Piazza di Spagna and the Trevi Fountain on one side and the Pantheon on the other.
Via Condotti branches off of the Via del Corso and leads up to the Spanish Steps. The street is famous for it’s boutique shopping.
Halfway down you will find the prestigous Caffè Greco founded in 1760 where many great musicians, artists and politicians used to mingle and drink espresso.
Corso Vittorio Emanuele II was constructed in the 19th century to provide an access to the Vatican City. Here you will find a lot of shops including the famous La Feltrinelli Bookstore.
This long winding street begins at Piazza Barberini and leads up to the Villa Borghese park at the very top.
The street is full of top-class hotels such as Westin Excelsior, Hotel Eden, and Marriott and no less luxurious restaurants including the well-known Cafè du Paris. Halfway up the street you will pass the Hard Rock Cafe and the American Embassy. At the top end you will also find the prestigious Henry’s Bar.
Via della Concillazione leads from the river Tiber right up to St. Peter’s Square and the famous Vatican City. Lined along the way you will find an abundance of souvenir shops selling religious artifacts, as well as ice cream and jelato shops and a couple of bars should you require a quick snack before diving into the Vatican with all its treasures.
If you have some spare time in Rome and want to do some shopping, this is the right street to go. With plenty of shops on both sides of the road and cheaper restaurants, it's a nice place for some leisure time. At the northeastern end of the street you will find Piazza della Repubblica where you can easily access various types of public transport to take you further on your journey in Rome.