As Rome is spread over seven hills there are lots of panoramic points where you can admire the city centre from a privileged point of view.
Rome offers different panoramic viewpoints: each with its own peculiarities, which enjoy a splendid view.
Here are 10 best lookout points in the city to add to your itinerary.
1. San Peter’s Dome
It’s worth the climb up the dome to see this classic panorama.
You can choose to take the elevator part of the way or to climb the steps the whole way.
If you choose to take the stairs the whole way, you have to climb 537 steps to the long climb spiral, called “snail of Sant’Andrea” before arriving at the panoramic outdoor gallery of the dome of St. Peter.
In any way, you choose to go up, from the dome you can enjoy Rome at 360°: monuments, villas, gardens, the Tiber, to Colli Albani in the distance.
After the steep climb up the stairs, the view of Rome from the Cupola is a sight for sore eyes.
2. Il Vittoriano
The Terrace at the top of the Victor Emmanuel monument is one of the best places to enjoy the sights of past and present Rome.
Two panoramic elevators, allow people to reach the terrace, from which it is possible admiring Rome.
The view range from the magnificence of the Colosseum and Fori Imperiali to the churches of the old town, from the Tiber River to the Jewish Ghetto, from Piazza del Campidoglio to the Quirinale and from the modern EUR district to the characteristic Castelli Romani.
3. Janiculum Hill
Of all Rome’s hills, the terrace of Gianicolo gives the fullest and one of the most famous panoramic views of Rome
Your vision will be delighted with colours, skyline, monuments, trees, pines and much more.
Since January 24, 1904, a cannon, which sits atop of the hill, fires blanks at noon every day to mark the exact time.
On rare days when the city is less noisy than usual, such as on Sundays or in August, it is possible to hear the shot all the way from the Esquilino Hill, one of the ancient city’s famous seven hills.
4. Spanish Steps
At the top of the steps, the whole of Rome’s centre is spread out before you.
The elegant staircase consists of 137 steps. It is especially beautiful in May when it is decorated with flowering azaleas.
The steps are usually very crowded; it attracts tourists as well as locals who use it as a gathering place. Bring a snack and sit down for a while, watch the sunset
The steps lead up to the 16th century Trinità dei Monti. From here, spectacular views over the city are worth the steep climb.
5. The Orange Garden on The Aventine Hill
Between Lungotevere Aventino and Circo Massimo, a gem stands above Rome with a magical atmosphere.
With its beautiful ornamental orange trees (“Giardino degli Aranci” means “the garden of orange trees”), the garden is a peaceful and romantic place to enjoy a lovely view over Rome.
A great little refuge from the bustling city below and the perfect place to crack open a bottle of wine and watch the sunset!
6. Il terrazzo di Castel Sant’Angelo
Castel Sant’Angelo, used by popes as a fortress and castle and the burial ground of Roman emperors, offers a more unique experience to city viewing.
Although not as high as other viewpoints, the roof of Castel Sant’Angelo delivers close views of Rome, such as the Ponte Sant’Angelo crossing the River Tevere, linking the fortress with Rome’s ancient streets.
In the afternoons, the sun sets behind St Peter’s dome, spied perfectly through the rampart windows.
7. Terrazza Panoramica “LO ZODIACO” Monte Mario
A 15-minute drive from the city centre takes you to Monte Mario, Rome’s highest peak.
The glistening view of the entire city is well worth an evening visit.
Whether spending a few euros at the romantic and well-established “Lo Zodaico” bar and restaurant on top of the hill, there’s nothing like dinner with a view of all of the dazzling domes of the Eternal City.
8. Terrazza Panoramica del Campidoglio
Perhaps the most memorable view in Rome is from the Campidoglio.
You may begin the tour of “Rome from above” from the Campidoglio in the centre of the city.
Going beyond the equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius, there is a square on the right from where one of the best views of the Roman Forum and the ancient Via Sacra can be obtained.
Since the city’s foundation 2,500 years ago Capitoline Hill has been the political center of the city, and for a long time the entire Roman Empire.
9. Terrazza Panoramica del Pincio
The gardens at Villa Borghese are a sight on their own and this should already be on your “must-see in Rome” list.
Just above Piazza del Popolo is the picture-perfect precipice – upon the Pincio Hill in the beautiful Villa Borghese you can find a terrace area overlooking the piazza and much of Rome.
The Pincio is maybe the place where all the young Italian boys bring their dates for the first kiss.
Nevertheless, it remains one of the most romantic places and best views of Rome even for grown-ups. Highly recommend getting there for a view of Rome during sunset.
10. Aventine Hill: The Keyhole
Walking up the Aventine Hill , at the end of the road (on Via di Santa Sabina) you will find yourself in the Knights of Malta square (in Italian, “Piazza dei Cavelieri di Malta”). Here, you might find queues of tourist awaiting their turn to peek through the keyhole in a large green wooden door.
It is sufficient to put an open eye to the keyhole, and focus. With kaleidoscope charm, a vision of St Peter’s dome (affectionately known to Romans as the “Cuppolone“) perfectly in perspective, opens up.