The Pantheon at Night, What to Do at Night in Rome Italy
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What to Do at Night in Rome Italy: 8 Free Sights

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Looking for what to do at night in Rome Italy? On my solo trip to Rome, I landed in the afternoon, so my first experience was checking out all the cool things to do in Rome at night. The lovely thing about this city is there is SO much to see! Even though I was alone, and had never been to Italy, and spoke very, very little Italian, I was able to see and do a lot at night time in Rome.

Is Rome Safe at Night?

Many of the places in Rome at night are well-populated, so it’s comfortable even if you are a solo traveler! I started this walk during the evening in Rome, but it quickly became night, so you can do this walking tour in either time frame and feel safe.

Of course, you should always, no matter where you are traveling, keep aware of your surroundings as no one can guarantee any place is 100% without a doubt safe, but as these were very touristy areas, well light, and rather calm for how many people there were, I can say that I’d highly recommend this as a solo female traveler destination. So, is Rome safe at night? Yes, I do believe it is.

1. Piazza del Popolo

If you’re coming from the Comics Guesthouse hostel, which is where I was staying, Piazza del Popolo is just a short walk away, making it a great place to start my “What to do at night in Rome Italy” tour. Piazza del Popolo is a large square that was once a traveler’s first view of Rome when arriving. It was also a place for public executions, the last of which took place in 1826. The name in modern Italian means “People’s Square,” but historically, it’s derived from the poplars (Populus in Latin, pioppo in Italian), after which the church of Santa Maria del Popolo, located in the northeast corner of the piazza, takes its name.

You can find so much amazing art in this one area! The statues, buildings, and architecture floored me. If you wind up loving the area as much as I did, you can also grab some breakfast nearby and people-watch the square, which is what I did one morning. There are also so many marvelous food and wine tours in Rome that’ll give you this experience as well.

If you’re a film fan, in Angels and Demons, Robert and Vittoria drive around the obelisk in the center of Piazza del Popolo and comment on its connection to the Illuminati. This piazza was also featured in the film To Rome with Love.

2. The Spanish Steps

Next, you’ll make your way further East and find yourself at the Spanish steps, which were constructed between 1723 and 1725. They connect the Piazza di Spagna at the bottom to the Piazza Trinità dei Monti at the top, with the Trinità dei Monti church on the upper landing.

The Spanish Steps are cool and are an important landmark in Rome. However, I thought all the lamps illuminating everything were cooler! I’m not used to this kind of heavenly glow back in Los Angeles. It felt romantic and fairytale all at once. Even now, nearly nine months later, my breath is taken away by the beauty, making it a must on my list of places to visit at night time in Rome.

Note: They have since put some regulations on sitting on the Spanish Steps. Which I get as it does function as steps, going to and from a place. And with the massive crowds on them, I can see how difficult it would be to get through.

3. Trevi Fountain

From the Spanish Steps, I headed down to the Trevi Fountain, which was unfortunately closed. I’m told this has been happening a lot lately. They’ve been on and off doing renovations, so the fountain had been drained. If you’d like to see it looking its best without the construction, check out this photo journey of Italy.

As one of the most famous places in Italy, it was still a treat to see! As wishing on the Trevi Fountain reportedly elicits a return to Rome, I’m looking forward to returning soon. In the meantime, you can check out these interesting facts about Italy.

As mentioned similarly above, they have since put restrictions on wading in the fountain, which, honestly, I have zero problems with. I can just imagine some irresponsible people getting hurt. So please respect the rules when visiting, especially at night time in Rome!

4. Eating at the Piazza Navona

After the disappointment of seeing the Trevi Fountain under construction, I headed to Piazza Navona. Honestly, I loved this piazza! It was gorgeous, and I stumbled onto it by accident! I can’t imagine what it’s like to live and/or work near there. It was absolutely stunning! The architecture, people, vendors, and restaurants. It was so full of life! Making it one of my must-sees on my list of what to do at night in Rome Italy.

After taking these fantastic photos, I sat and had dinner at a charming little place facing the piazza. I highly recommend it as the food was delicious, and the staff was extremely kind despite my poor Italian. I tried my best to use the few Italian words my friend taught me.

If you’d like to brush up on Italian before heading to Rome, check out my guide on the Mango Languages app. Obviously, this dinner was not free, but you can always opt out of this bit and just walk around the piazza. If you are looking for drinks, music, and nightlife in Rome, there are many places you can find in the piazza.

Another film fact, in Angels and Demons, Robert discovers the Fountain of the Four Rivers, a fountain that Bernini designed, which you can see above, is the water marker on the path to illumination. It’s here that Robert also saves the life of the last cardinal from being drowned in the fountain. I’m not sure if they filmed it here or recreated it elsewhere, but this is the location mentioned in both the book and the movie. The piazza was also featured in the film Eat Pray Love.

what to do at night in Rome Italy

5. The Pantheon

Now, if you thought that was pretty, which I did, wait for the Pantheon. I honestly and sincerely believe this is the most beautiful photo I’ve ever taken. The Pantheon dominated the area. You can’t help but stare at it, like I did, for five whole minutes. So obviously, it makes my list of what to do at night in Rome Italy.

Seeing the Pantheon at night time in Rome was a magical experience. It is the most well-preserved building from ancient Rome. There are tons of little cafes and restaurants around it, so I highly recommend, if you’re as enchanted as I was by this building, to grab a seat at one of them, have a glass of wine, and just take it all in. I also recommend that you visit the Pantheon during the day so that you can experience its interior.

vatican city best things to do in rome at night

6. The Vatican City

While there are many wonderful things to see at the Vatican during the day, it is gorgeous at night! Vatican City just shines incredibly over the Tiber River. It’s worth walking around at night time in Rome just to see it. This is the view from the East side of it, just in front of the Corte Suprema di Cassazione. I highly recommend doing this if you’re on your way across the river as you get that view of the water glistening beneath it as well. It was one of my favorite places on my what to do at night in Rome Italy list.

what to do at night in Rome Italy

7. Corte Suprema di Cassazione

While the Corte Suprema di Cassazione is a government building and not really a tourist spot as it’s the highest court of appeal in Italy, it is still a rather pretty building that you should check out. From the front of this building, you can also get a shot of Vatican City at night. It’s worth checking out when deciding on things to do in Rome at night.

Castel Sant’ Angelo, night time in Rome

8. Castel Sant’ Angelo

Finally, I’ll end my list of what to do at night in Rome Italy, with the show-stopping Castel Sant’ Angelo. Also known as the Mausoleum of Hadrian, the Castel Sant’Angelo (in English: Castle of the Holy Angel) was commissioned by the Roman Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for himself and his family. The popes later used it as a fortress and castle, but today, it is a museum you can visit during the day. Unfortunately, I did not have the time to see it, but I’ve heard lovely things about it and would highly recommend it if you have the time!

As far as night time in Rome, walking along the River Tiber, the ambiance was charming while looking at Castel Sant’ Angelo. It lights up beautifully and reflects onto the water. You can get this shot in front of Corte Suprema di Cassazione, two sights with one stone!

In Angels and Demons, Castel Sant’ Angelo is also the last location on the path of illumination. It’s where the kidnapper hid the cardinals and the canister of anti-matter. Castel Sant’ Angelo was also featured in the film Eat Pray Love.

Final Thoughts on What to Do at Night in Rome Italy

Again, while checking out these best things to do in Rome at night, I did stick to well-lit areas. Especially since it wasn’t as well populated by the time I was wrapping up my walk. I didn’t feel unsafe at any point while checking out these cool places to go during night time in Rome. One place I wish I had visited at night was the Colosseum. It’s a bit farther away from these locations, which is why I chose not to go. But if you have the time or energy, I’d highly recommend you do it!

This walk, with my dinner included, took just a couple of hours. Though Rome is so lovely, I could have wandered for even longer if I had not been so tired after just coming in from England. Many times during a trip, I do so much during the day that I’m exhausted by the time it’s night. I highly recommend these things to do in Rome at night as they are well worth the time (even if you are exhausted)! As you can see on the map below, I made a bit of a loop on this walking tour of Rome I made from my what to do at night in Rome Italy list.

What to do at Night in Rome Italy Walking Route

Starting Point: Piazza del Popolo

.4 miles to the Spanish Steps

.4 miles to the Trevi Fountain

.6 miles to Piazza Navona

.2 miles to the Pantheon

.5 miles to the view of Vatican City/Corte Suprema di Cassazione

Ending Point: .3 miles to Castel Sant’Angelo

Total Distance: 2.4 miles

Duration: 1 hour (without stops)

If you’re looking to get out of Rome for the day, there are several beautiful destinations around Italy, including Siena in Tuscany.

Looking for a Rome Itinerary?: Check out this two days in Rome article!

So, what are your things to do in Rome at night? Comment below and let me know!

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2 Comments

    1. Thank you! Yes, Rome is exquisite! It was like a fairy tale, I’d highly recommend it. I’ll be posting more photos soon.

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