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  • Writer's pictureChristopher Gomez

Things to do and Places to See before you leave Rome - Aka, "Chris-Kebab" signing off

Written by Christopher Gomez

As our time in Rome nears an end, I felt there are a few places in Rome you must visit before you get on that flight back to the US. In typical style, these won’t be your average clickbait run of the mill tourist trap places, but instead places I feel embody the Roman spirit, as well as the beauty of the city.

Porta Portese

I’m sure absolutely NO ONE saw this coming… Porta Portese is perhaps the most lively market in Rome, and like the eternal city, it's dirty, cramped, and full of random people trying to sell you stuff. But, apart from having the best deals in the city, Porta Portese offers a unique view into the barter culture of Europe, a truly unique experience you will find nowhere in the United States. Furthermore, Porta Portese has many of the most interesting personalities you will meet here in Rome. People from all different backgrounds come together in this one place to buy and sell their wares. It truly represents the mercantile spirit of Rome.


Can’t believe I have to say this again, but TRY KEBAB. So many people have yet to try kebab, and this is truly a travesty. Kebab is quick simple easy food that always tastes good. If you like chicken, they make Shawarma chicken Kebabs. If you're a classy kinda person, you can get good old beef and lamb. Even if you're a vegetarian, they make falafel kebabs. The best place in town is located in Campo De Fiori and is called Shawarma Express. If you tell them Chris sent you, you may score some free samples. So one of these days, skip mensa and head out to get a Kebab.

Chris Gomez enjoys a nice fresh kebab in Campo de' Fiori.

Terrazza del Pincio

The Terrazza del Pincio is, in my opinion, the most beautiful place in Rome. It is situated on a hill overlooking the Piazza Del Popolo. As the terrace faces west towards St Peters, the sun will set right behind the dome and create a beautiful golden aura around it. Then after dark, the city lights up in a sea of cars, street lights, and buildings as far as the eye can see. From there you can see Monte Mario across the city to the right, and to the left you can see Piazza Garibaldi. It is truly a beautiful site you will remember for the rest of your life.

Piazza Venezia, Foro Imperiale, and Colosseum night walk

Walking up Via Del Corso into Piazza Venezia is almost always beautiful, but to go at night and see the Altar to the Fatherland lit up is stunning. Then as you continue down the main road, you will look around and see ruins of the Roman Forum lit up in the night with the Colosseum gleaming at the end of the street. It is truly a magnificent sight to behold. Typically you can find street musicians performing late into the night which helps contribute to the overall ambiance. If you find your way up to the top of the Capitoline hill, you will find yourself looking out over the Forum from a little known lookout. Truly an experience you will remember.

Alexanderplatz Jazz Club

If you find yourself in Prati looking for a nice place to relax, look no further than Alexanderplatz. This classy Jazz club is the best in town, and has been known to host some big names, both in clientele and in performers. They have independent bands come in every night to serenade with their music ranging from classy 1920s swing to modern jazz masterpieces. If you ever come across the owner, ask him about the story of the place. Alexanderplatz is truly a gem of Rome.

Sant' Eustachio Il Caffè

Sant’ Eustachio Il Caffe is a staple of Roman coffee culture. It offers the best coffee in the entire city with an interesting backstory to boot. The coffee itself is made using high quality beans as well as water from the Ancient Roman Acqua Vergine aqueduct. Their staple coffee is known as the “Gran Cafe” and it is made using a secret recipe of coffee, milk, spices, and sugar. The secret is so closely guarded that they put up dividers between the machine and the bar so that the customers cannot see what the baristas are doing. This cafe is a wrapup of all of Rome's coffee culture, and is a must see. And after a few visits you’ll be a proper coffee snob who will never look at common black coffee the same ever again.

Overall, that is a short list of the random things I thought every person should see before they leave Rome. But while I’ve got you here at the bottom of the page, I just wanna say it's been a real ride. I have really enjoyed writing up these articles about things I love and I appreciate anyone who read these articles all along the way. These articles gave me the excuse to describe the places I've been in a way I enjoy. Not to mention, it's a lot nicer when people read this by choice instead of getting trapped in a conversation with me or something. Thanks everyone who has read and thanks to everyone who has given me an excuse to colloquially write about the city I love. Things have come a long way.

- Local Guide Chris “Kebab” Gomez.

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