Where to Stay in Rome - Best Areas Recommended by Locals
Posted on April 21st, 2024
By Rome Travel Tips
HotelsPractical Tips
Posted on April 21st, 2024
By Rome Travel Tips
HotelsPractical Tips

Where to Stay in Rome – Best Areas

The article explores the best neighborhoods in Rome for accommodation, highlighting their unique features. Esquilino/Termini is praised for its convenience, Via Nazionale for its elegance, and Prati for its sophistication near the Vatican. Villa Borghese is a green haven, Trastevere the bohemian heart, Monti blends ancient and modern vibes, Centro Storico is the historic soul, and Piazza di Spagna is the center of luxury shopping. Each area offers a diverse range of experiences tailored to visitor preferences and budgets.

Ah, Rome! A city where the past and present do a delightful dance on cobblestone streets, and every corner has a story to tell. But hey, before you start envisioning yourself tossing coins into the Trevi Fountain or having a Lizzie McGuire moment on a Vespa, let’s chat about something super important – where to plant your feet in this historic wonderland. Choosing where to stay in Rome isn’t just about finding a comfy bed to crash (though, let’s be honest, that’s a big part of it); it’s about soaking in the ambiance, the culture, and yes, even the chaos of this timeless city.

So, buckle up, because we’re diving into the nitty-gritty, the real talk about Rome’s neighborhoods. From the charmingly chaotic to the serenely scenic, I’m here to spill the tea on where to stay and where you might think twice about booking that Airbnb. Think of me as that friend who’s lived in Rome way too long – the one who knows just which cobblestone is loose on Via del Corso and which gelato spot is overrated. I’m here to guide you through the labyrinth of choices, with all the love and honesty a true friend can muster.

We’re talking the good, the bad, and the “uh, maybe not” of Rome’s districts, starting from those that might leave you scratching your head and working our way up to the ones that will have you heart-eye emojis all day. Whether you’re here to find that perfect slice of pizza, to marvel at ancient ruins at every turn, or simply to wander and let the city’s magic surprise you, I’ve got your back.

Finding where to stay in Rome is a bit like choosing your adventure. Each neighborhood has its own personality, quirks, and charm. And, because I love you guys, I’ll even throw in a few personal anecdotes and pro tips to make your stay as epic as a night out in Trastevere.

Ready to explore Rome like a local? Before to proceed, I strongly advise you guys to check other of our Rome Travel Tips by Locals!

Table of Contents

Esquilino / Roma Termini Central Station

Imagine stepping out into the buzz of Rome, where the energy is infectious, and the aroma of freshly brewed espresso wafts through the air. That’s Esquilino for you. Flanked by the mammoth Termini Station, it’s where travelers first set foot into the whirlwind of Roman life. But let’s dive into the real scoop.

Why to Stay in Esquilino / Roma Termini Central Station

Connectivity is the name of the game here. From Termini, you can jet off to pretty much anywhere in Rome, or Italy for that matter, without breaking a sweat. And if you’re the type who doesn’t mind a bit of hustle along with a slice of urban mosaic (read: graffiti art and eclectic storefronts), you’ll fit right in.

Plus, this area is a treasure trove for budget travelers. Affordable accommodations? Check. Cheap eats that’ll make your taste buds dance the tarantella? Double-check.

Why NOT to Stay in Esquilino/Roma Termini Central Station

Now, let’s get real. The area can feel a bit like the Wild West after sundown. It’s not exactly the Rome of postcards. If you’re imagining quaint, cobbled alleyways lit by soft, glowing lanterns, this ain’t it, chief. It’s busy, a tad gritty, and while not inherently unsafe, it does demand a bit of street smarts after dark.

Average Price Per Night in Esquilino

You’re likely to find a range from around €50 to €150. The price tags are as varied as the district itself, catering to both the shoestring backpackers and those wanting a bit more comfort without splurging.

Top Hotels in Esquilino / Roma Termini Central Station

Quick Recap: Esquilino/Termini Central Station

  • Pros: Excellent connectivity, budget-friendly, vibrant international atmosphere.
  • Cons: Can be noisy and crowded, not the most picturesque, evening safety requires mindfulness.

Where to Stay in Rome - Esquilino-Termini

Via Nazionale

Next up, we’re trotting over to Via Nazionale – think of it as Esquilino’s more polished, slightly posh cousin. This broad street is like a catwalk, showcasing Rome’s eclectic style – from ancient ruins to boutique windows.

Why to Stay in Via Nazionale

Via Nazionale is your runway if you love being in the thick of it all while enjoying a dash of elegance. It’s lined with shops, cafes, and historic sites, so you’ll never run out of things to do. Plus, it straddles several neighborhoods, meaning the Colosseum is just a stroll away, and trendy Monti is your next-door neighbor.

Why NOT to Stay in Via Nazionale

Chic as it may be, Via Nazionale can come with a heftier price tag. And, with its popularity, comes crowds – if you’re seeking tranquility, this might not be your sanctuary. Furthermore, Via Nazionale is incredibly close to Termini Central Station – again, this might not be the safer choice.

Average Price Per Night in Via Nazionale

Think in the ballpark of €100 to €200. IMHO, I wouldn’t pay that much to stay in this area.

Best Hotels in Via Nazionale

Quick Recap: Via Nazionale

  • Pros: Central location, elegant surroundings, plenty to see and do.
  • Cons: Higher price point, can be crowded, not so safe

Where to Stay in Rome - Via Nazionale

Prati/Vatican/St.Peter’s Area

Hey bud, ready to class things up a bit? Let’s waltz over to Prati. It’s like that well-dressed pal who’s got a fancy job but still knows how to let their hair down on the weekends.

Why to Stay in Prati/Vatican/St. Peter’s Area

If you’re into grand boulevards, polished pavements, and a vibe that says, “I’ve got my life together,” Prati is your match made in Roman heaven. It’s as calm and collected as a morning cappuccino at a sidewalk café, with the Vatican’s St. Peter’s Basilica practically in your backyard. Ooh, fancy.

And get this, shopaholics – Via Cola di Rienzo is like the Yellow Brick Road of shopping in Rome. From swanky boutiques to killer gelato spots that’ll make you moan “mamma mia,” Prati’s got the goods.

Why NOT to Stay in Prati/Vatican/St.Peter’s Area

Despite its charms, Prati is like that friend who’s a tiny bit too put-together – it might seem a touch sterile if you’re looking for that “I’m in an Italian movie” feeling. And heads up, your wallet might feel the pinch here. Those sleek law offices and designer shops? They mean business, and they’re not in the business of being cheap.

Average Nightly Rate in Prati/Vatican/St.Peter’s Area

Get ready to splash out a bit more dough, where prices are gonna hover around €100-€250. But hey, for that kind of scenery and style, might be worth loosening the purse strings, right?

Best Hotels in Prati

Quick Recap: Prati

  • Pros: Upscale and serene, close to Vatican City, great for shopping.
  • Cons: Can feel a bit impersonal, not as “Olde Worlde” charming, kinder to higher budgets.

Where to Stay in Rome - Prati-Vatican Area

Villa Borghese

Alright, let’s zip over to a spot that’s like the Central Park of Rome, but make it artsy and sprinkle it with Italian elegance. Welcome to Villa Borghese – Rome’s verdant heart and soul, where the grass is definitely greener, and the vibes are as chill as gelato on a hot Roman afternoon.

Why to Stay near Villa Borghese

Imagine strolling through gardens that look like they’ve been plucked straight out of a Renaissance painting, where you can plop down on a bench and just… chill. Villa Borghese isn’t just a park; it’s a massive outdoor museum, decked out with temples, fountains, and statues that will make your inner art buff do a happy dance.

Got a thing for rowboats? You can paddle around a little lake here. Prefer to keep your feet on the ground? There’s a zoo. In the mood for a cinematic experience? Catch a film at the Casa del Cinema. Honestly, it’s like someone asked, “What’s the most relaxing way to spend a day in Rome?” and Villa Borghese said, “Hold my espresso.”

Why NOT to Stay near Villa Borghese

Now, as much as Villa Borghese is a slice of serene pie, remember, it’s not actually a neighborhood. It’s more like this awesome, enormous park surrounded by some pretty swanky areas. So, if you’re looking to stay “in” Villa Borghese, what you’re really looking for are the areas around it – think Pinciano or Flaminio for that close but cozy feel.

And, just a heads-up, while being next to all that greenery is ace for daytime frolicking, the nightlife here doesn’t really, uh, exist. It’s more crickets than clubbing, if you catch my drift. Furthermore, Villa Borghese Park is not saffe at all during nights: imagine wandering in a dark park, surrounded by weird people with no one else around.. sounds like an horror movie, doesn’t it?

Average Nightly Rate near Villa Borghese

Since we’re dancing around an upscale part of Rome, lodging isn’t exactly what you’d call cheap. Think more in the range of €150-€300 per night. But hey, for a peaceful retreat after a day of battling the tourist hordes, might be worth the splurge, right?

Best Hotels Near Villa Borghese

Quick Recap: Villa Borghese

  • Pros: Peaceful green oasis, cultural hotspots galore, feels like a leafy hug from Mother Nature.
  • Cons: Light on the nighttime action, can lean towards the pricier side for stays.

Where to Stay in Rome - Villa Borghese


Oh, Trastevere, you charming little rascal! This is the part of Rome where the streets are paved with cobblestones and dreams, my friend. If Rome were a party, Trastevere would be the heart of it, belting out tunes on the guitar, wine glass in hand, leading everyone in a song.

Why to Stay in Trastevere

Walking into Trastevere is like crashing the coolest block party. The buildings are draped in ivy, the vibes are just right, and every alley tells a story. It’s less of a “historic district” and more of a “living, breathing, let’s-have-another-round-of-Aperol” kind of place.

You like food? Silly question, of course, you do. Trastevere is a culinary wonderland. From hole-in-the-wall pizzerias that serve slices so good they’ll make you cry, to quaint trattorias where Nonna is in the back rolling out the pasta – this place is the real deal.
Want to know more about food? Here’s a few links that may come in handy:

Rome Food Tips by Locals
Best Rome Street Food
Best Pizza in Trastevere

Why NOT to Stay in Trastevere

As with any spot that’s a smidge too popular, Trastevere can get packed. We’re talking streets so crowded you might find yourself in an impromptu sardine can at times, particularly on weekend nights. And because it’s so adored, prices here can be a tad… inflated. Being a nightlife area, Trastevere can also be dangerous, especially during weekends nights: drunken people could ruin some magic moments.

Average Nightly Rate in Trastevere

Finding a place to crash in Trastevere is a bit like hunting for treasure. You can find some gems (think charming B&Bs and cute boutique hotels), but you’ll need to dig through some not-so-great options too. Nightly rates can vary wildly, but expect to shell out anywhere from €150 to €300 for something decent. My advice? Book early. The good spots get snapped up quicker than you can say “Piazza Santa Maria.”

Best Hotels in Trastevere

Quick Recap: Trastevere

  • Pros: Unbeatable atmosphere, food that’ll ruin you for all other foods, feels like you’re in “the heart of Rome.”
  • Cons: Can get crowded, prices can lean toward the “eek” side.

Where to Stay in Rome - Trastevere


Hey, you history buffs and culture vultures, ready to mix a dash of ancient grandeur with funky, artsy vibes? Then Monti, nestled right beside the iconic Colosseum, is your dream playground. I mean, how often do you get to sip on a craft cocktail while literally gazing out at the Colosseum? Only in Monti, folks!

Why to Stay in Monti/Colosseum

Monti is like that cool, artsy friend who knows everything about the latest trends but is also super into vintage records. The streets here are a quirky blend of bohemian shops, tiny galleries, and the kind of wine bars that make you want to talk about existentialism—even if you don’t understand it.

During the day, amble around the cobblestone streets, pop into a shop selling handmade jewelry, or score a vintage find that’ll have your friends back home green with envy. By night, join the locals as they embark on their nightly passeggiata, snagging a gelato or diving into one of the many charming eateries where the pasta is always homemade and the wine flows like water.

Why NOT to Stay in Monti/Colosseum

While Monti is undeniably enchanting, don’t forget—you’re in one of the most tourist-loved spots in Rome. That means it can get super crowded, especially when you’re trying to snap that perfect #ColosseumSelfie. And, yes, with great popularity comes a slightly heftier price tag. Dining and shopping here can leave your wallet a bit lighter than some other parts of Rome.

Average Nightly Rate in Monti

Looking for a place to crash after all that wine and wandering? Monti has options ranging from luxe hotels with roof terraces offering killer views to cozy, family-run B&Bs where the hosts treat you like family. Expect to pay around €150 to €600 per night, depending on how fancy you wanna get.

Best Hotels in Monti

Quick Recap: Monti/Colosseum

  • Pros: Killer cultural scene, food to die for, and hey, your neighbor is the Colosseum.
  • Cons: Tourist central at times, slightly pricey.

Where to Stay in Rome - Monti

Centro Storico

Buckle up, buttercup, because we’re diving headfirst into the heart of Rome — the Centro Storico. This isn’t just any old city center; it’s the epicenter of history, art, and Italian lifestyle, where every nook and cranny has a tale to whisper (or, let’s be real, sing in full operatic style).

Why to Stay in Centro Storico

Picture this: You’re strolling down ancient streets, gelato in hand, weaving through landmarks that your history teacher could only dream of showing you in person. The Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Campo de’ Fiori—names that sound like music and feel like stepping back in time.

Centro Storico is a maze of marvels. One minute you’re trying to wrap your head around the fact that the Pantheon is still standing after all these years, and the next, you’re watching the world go by in Piazza Navona, surrounded by fountains that could put Vegas to shame.

Why NOT to Stay in Centro Storico

As magical as Centro Storico is, remember, it’s the beating heart of Rome. And that heart beats fast. The streets buzz with tourists, street artists, and locals zipping around on Vespas like they’re starring in their own Italian movie. It can get crowded, which is part of its charm, but also means you might have to elbow your way to the best gelato spot.

Oh, and while we’re talking practicalities? Dining and shopping here can lean towards the “I’m gonna need a second job” side of the scale. But finding those hidden gems where the locals go? Priceless.

Average Nightly Rate in Centro Storico

Accommodation in the Centro Storico is as varied as the pasta shapes in Italy. From plush hotels that make you feel like nobility to quaint apartments that give you a taste of Roman life, there’s something for every wallet (though you might need to dig deep for some).

Prices can range from “Oh, that’s reasonable” to “Oh my, I may need to sell a kidney,” especially during peak season. My two cents? Look for deals and book as early as you can.

Best Hotels in Centro Storico

Quick Recap: Centro Storico

  • Pros: History galore, vibrant atmosphere, postcard-perfect at every turn.
  • Cons: Crowds, tourist prices, and getting lost (though that’s half the fun).

Piazza di Spagna

Hey there! So, you’re itching to hear about Piazza di Spagna? Say less, I’ve got the lowdown for you. But remember, we’re still in the beating heart of Rome — the glorious Centro Storico. Piazza di Spagna is like that trendy cousin of Trevi who knows how to dress to impress and isn’t shy about it.

Why to Stay near the Spanish Steps

Piazza di Spagna is synonymous with the Spanish Steps, and for good reason. They’re not just for sitting, folks (actually, it has become illegal to sit on the steps! Do not sit on them!) — these steps are where you soak in the sun, people-watch like a pro, and if you’re lucky, catch a street performer who’s actually good. It’s like Rome’s outdoor living room, but with way more people and occasionally someone trying to sell you a rose.

Why NOT to Stay near the Spanish Steps

The Steps might steal the show, but the surrounding area? Chef’s kiss! We’ve got the Keats-Shelley House for the literature buffs, the swanky boutiques that make your credit card nervous, and tucked-away terraces where you can recharge with an espresso that’ll have you buzzing faster than a Vespa.

And the shopping – oh, mamma mia! It’s like a candy store for fashion lovers. From the big hitters like Gucci and Prada to boutiques so exclusive they don’t even have a sign, it’s a retail paradise. Just try not to faint at the price tags; they can be more breathtaking than the view from the top of the Steps.

As with any hot spot in Rome, Piazza di Spagna can get packed. I’m talking sardines-in-a-can level crowded. And being part of Centro Storico means it’s as touristy as it gets. But that’s all part of the charm, right? Embrace the hustle and keep an eye out for pickpockets. They’re like the uninvited party crashers of your Roman holiday.

Average Nightly Rate near the Spanish Steps

Places to stay here range from “I’m living my Roman dream” to “My wallet is crying,” but that’s the price you pay for prime location and fancy digs. You might find something a bit more down-to-earth price-wise if you wander a few streets over, though.

Best Hotels near Piazza di Spagna

Quick Recap: Piazza di Spagna

  • Pros: Glamour central, unbeatable ambiance, and some prime carb-loading opportunities.
  • Cons: Your selfie game needs to be strong amidst the crowds, and your wallet must be ready for a workout.

Where to Stay in Rome - Spanish Steps


And there you have it, pal—our spirited dash through the streets and secrets of our latest adventure. Keep these gems in your back pocket; they’re your secret handshake into the world of hidden wonders. Can’t wait to hear all about your escapades when you hit the ground running. Until next time, keep that wanderlust strong and your adventures wild! 🚀🌟

Don’t forget to check other Rome Travel Tips by Locals!

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