5 free things to do in Rome

Rome is full of stunning architecture and world-famous landmarks. Yes, some activities are a little pricey, but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank during your visit. In fact, there are plenty of incredible things to do in Rome that will cost you absolutely nothing. If you like cheap travelling, you’ll appreciate the below:

Enjoy street performances at Piazza Navona

The square attracts tourists every single day, and it’s not hard to see why. The Piazza is surrounded by stunning architecture, including three famous fountains and the baroque church of Sant’Agnese in Agone, and is chock full of street performers. Street artists, painters, and musicians flock to the square to impress the tourists every day and night. At the northern end, you can find portrait painters and vendors of art and posters, whereas the square itself is the main attraction where theatre performers and musicians treat you to a free show (although tips are appreciated).

Catch a film at Casa Del Cinema

Film buffs, this one is for you. Situated in the scenic public park Villa Borghese, the Casa Del Cinema was launched in 2001 and is the most modern cinema in the city. The pavilion had been derelict before but is now home to one of the top spots for film fans throughout the city. As well as featuring classics and new releases, the cinema hosts events where the audience has the chance to mingle with directors, producers, and stars of the silver screen.

Eat for free at aperitif bars

‘Aperitif’ culture is becoming increasingly popular in Rome. The general idea is that for the price of a drink (generally around 5 euro), you get a drink and a plate full of tasty treats in return. Sandwiches, cold pasta, and finger foods are often served – typically with authentic Italian ingredients – so it’s a great chance to test out the local cuisine without spending much money. Two particularly good spots are Société Lutèce at Piazza Monte and Pepato at Via del Politeama.

Listen to the Pope’s weekly audience

If you’re in Rome on a Wednesday, you have the chance to watch the Pope’s weekly audience at St. Peter’s Square for free. Also called the General Audience, Pope Francis addresses the crowd – usually in different languages – and gives a themed speech followed by prayers, a homily, and singing. At the end, the Pope will bless articles, so if you have a religious item which you would like to get blessed, make sure you bring it with you. The event lasts between an hour and an hour and a half and happens every single week.<h4>Free places at specific times.</h4>

Rome is a city that values its visitors, and graciously offers free entry to otherwise expensive attractions – but only at specific times. All state museums are open for free on the first Sunday of the month, the Vatican Museums are free of charge on the last Sunday of the month, and the Colosseum, Palatino, and Roman Forum are all free if you come on the first Sunday of the month.

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