Rome Transportation

Rome Transportation
Rome Transportation

Rome transportation is readily available in virtually any mode you want or need to get around this bustling city. Cycling, walking, driving, boating, and the Metro in Rome come together to create a blend of inviting options. Rome is a compressed and ancient European capital, and it's this compact arrangement that makes it an easy destination to explore on foot. A car rental in Rome is another option, but bear in mind that driving in Rome can be a harrowing experience for outsiders.

Walking from the Forum to Palatine Hill is a great way to explore myriad temples, basilicas, and the Arch of Titus along the way. Or, explore the heart of the Eternal City on foot and delve into sites such as the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, Piazza della Trinità dei Monti, and shopping along Via Condotti. Overall, Rome is not as large as many other European capital cities and most of the famous sites are remarkably close to each other. A car rental in Rome around the historic center is virtually useless and creates many more headaches than benefits. Even when touring attractions in some of the outer-lying areas, the Metro in Rome is much more convenient, and more affordable than a car rental.

Car Rental Rome Italy
Car Rental Rome Italy

A car rental in Rome is one way to get around, but it becomes evident rather quickly that it isn't necessarily the best choice. Getting around Rome by Metro or bus is a convenient and more straight forward option. Rome transportation by car can be confusing as thousands of undisciplined drivers navigate the roads, making it even more difficult for timid drivers to reach a destination. Be confident in your choices on the road, but drive cautiously at all times. If you intend to get out of the city, though, a car rental does come in handy when driving from city to city. For instance, flying into Rome and spending a few days exploring, then picking up a car and going to Tuscany or Florence is a great way to see Italian cities and the charming countryside in between. Many hotels offer onsite parking in Rome as well.

To rent a car in Rome, visitors need an international driver's license. Look for the green signs indicating the various major Autostradas, or toll routes leading to major city areas. Drivers must stop for a ticket to drive on toll routes and keep the ticket handy when leaving toll ways. Autostrada tickets indicate the distance driven, which determines the cost of use. With a rental car in Rome, visitors will most certainly experience hasty drivers riding scooters and mopeds weaving in and out of traffic maniacally, ignoring traffic signs and lights, and cutting off other vehicles. Many travelers prefer renting a moped or scooter over a car and avoiding the sometimes annoying waits for public Rome transportation. Vespas can be rented all over the city.

Rome to Florence Train
Rome to Florence Train  Image: Fancisco Antunes (flickr)

Public Rome transportation is the most popular choice during many vacations. Public buses and subways cover paths intercepting all over the city. Both subway and bus tickets can be used interchangeably, but be sure to keep tickets handy as they are checked, and, if not produced, heavy fines can ensue. Tickets are purchased from vending machines, bars, newsstands, and tobacco stands for both the Metro in Rome and for public buses. The Metro in Rome consists of two lines that go to most of the city's historic sites. The two main lines meet at Termini Station and each line runs about every ten minutes between the hours of 5 a.m. and 11:30 p.m., with shorter hours on Saturdays and Sundays.

Rome Transportation
Rome Transportation

Alternatively, Rome transportation is also available via city trams that run each night until 12 a.m. Environmentally-friendly electric buses service the city's smaller alleys and back streets that the Metro in Rome doesn't traverse. More than a dozen night buses run from midnight to 5:30 a.m., and are located near stations at Piazza Venezia and Termini and leaving every half hour. Night buses are labeled with owls and tickets are available on board.

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