Valentine’s Day! There’s not a better place to be in this day than Rome, one of the most romantic cities in the world, and the cradle of the myth.
The first legend about the Saint, and perhaps the best known one, began when the Emperor Claudius II “The Cruel”, cancelled marriages and engagements in Rome, to convince men to leave their cities and join war. The priest Valentine defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, he was sentenced to have his head cut off on the 14th day of February. While in prison, Valentine fell in love with his jailor’s daughter, who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, he wrote her a letter, which he signed “From your Valentine”…
But nowadays, what can you do with your loved one in Rome? Here the best tips!
1 – Admire a spectacular view of the Eternal city, incomparable at dawn and sunset
One of Rome’s most romantic spots is the top of the Janiculum Hill, that provides one of the best panoramic views of the city, across rooftops, ruins and domes. Another unmissable view is from the Aventino Hill, ideal for a picnic with a bottle of wine in the little Parco Savelli (the “Garden of the Orange-trees”). Here you can also peek through the famous keyhole of the Palace of the Knights of Malta and admire St. Peter’s Dome on the background of the Knights’ garden and the skyline of Rome. Also on the Pincian Hill, in the northeast quadrant of the historical center of Rome, from the terrace of Piazza Napoleone I, you can enjoy one of the most breathtaking views of the city, with Castel Sant’Angelo and Saint Peter’s Dome. Last, but not least, The Zodiaco. On top of the hill of Monte Mario, western Rome, known as the “path of lovers”, is another place where you can enjoy a gorgeous view of the whole city, spreading up to the Apennines Mountains, often showing with the snow on top of the peaks, on the eastern part of Rome.
2 – Relax with a river boat cruise on the Tiber
You can savor a drink, or dinner by candlelight, admiring the famous attractions of the Eternal City from a different point of view. Enjoy the famous bridges hand in hand with your loved one.
3 – Spend a romantic afternoon in one of the beautiful Roman Villas and parks
One for all, the Villa Borghese Park, one of the biggest in Rome, in the heart of the city. Here you will be surrounded by nature, art and exceptional landscapes. Ideal for a picnic, a relaxing walk or to sit and enjoy the view of the little lakes, the fountains, the neoclassical temple, only with the sounds of nature. If you are looking for an alternative, here’s a list of Rome’s parks and gardens.
4 – Take a romantic walk through the heart of Rome at night
The Colosseum, Via dei Fori imperiali, the Spanish Steps, the Trevi’s fountain, the Pantheon: taste an unique experience surrounded by the magic of the past, dramatically enlightened at night. Don’t forget Ponte Sant’Angelo, the bridge in front of Castel Sant’Angelo: an icon of romanticism, set of many love scenes from Italian and international movies. With the lights of the Castle as background, you will be just in the middle of the city, and you can admire buildings and churches of the ancient Rome.
5 – Candles and gifts
Don’t miss a dinner by candlelight: many restaurants arrange a dedicated menu for the day, and Italian food, you know, is delicious and… aphrodisiac!
Never forget a special gift for your loved one: in Rome you can find great pastry shops and excellent types of chocolate, well furnished florists and jewelries…
One of the best ways to visit Rome on Valentine’s day (or night) could be a private guided tour of Rome Highlights: imagine a private car only for you two, a bottle of champagne, two glasses, and an elegant and experienced driver guide that brings you to see all the best romantic spots in the city… Sounds romantic enough?
Whatever you decide to do for your Roman Valentine’s day, you can always find many exhibitions, operas and ballets in the city, or enjoy thermae and massages imitating ancient Romans.
And if being a couple is not your style, no worries: on February 15th Italians celebrate San Faustino, patron of singles. If you are in Rome you won’t be short of occasion to party hard!
Photo Sources: bb-roma.it, gitesultevere.it, wikipedia, pixabay