The Metro (Metropolitana)
Rome’s subway is excellent and will get you fast and timely on almost all important sights and attractions. Cozy, fast and affordable the subway is an excellent ally during your short city break. The only problem is that during certain hours of the weekdays, things can get a bit crowded.
If speed is your concern – as it usually is for short break visitors – then the subway is your one and only choice. Some useful reminders:
- It typically operates, Sunday to Thursday, from 5:30 am to 11:30 pm and, during Fridays and Saturdays, from 5:30 am to 1:30 am.
- A few hints about the Metro’s main lines are
- The Orange Line, or Line A, from southern districts to the city’s north;
- The Blue Line, or Line B, going from north to south.
- The Green Line, or Line C, runs from the Monte Compatri to San Giovanni.
Tickets are relatively cheap and can be found almost everywhere, from kiosks to vending machines. Daily or weekly passes are also available.
Buses & Trams
Trams are equally useful but not as fast and comfortable. Still, their network is extensive and will surely take you to most of the Rome’s most significant sights. Buses are comfortable, but it is more difficult to find a seat and surely not as punctual as the subway and trams. Most buses and trams offer also free Wi-Fi connection – though with the limitations of using it no more than an hour.
Remember that Rome is a vast city, with monuments and sites in a range of several kilometers – so do not even imagine walking the whole of it, except if you are planning your city break to be a bit longer than usual.
Another transportation option is Rome’s famous mini electric-buses, specially designed for touristic routes, taking short city break visitors to most of the city’s sights and monuments.
Tickets are relatively cheap (no more than 1.50€) and you can use it for around 1 hour and a half for any number of buses or trams. Remember that you cannot buy tickets onboard. You can also get
- 1 day passes for (BIG – ticket) for 7.00 Euros,
- 1 week passes (CIS– ticket) for is 24.00 Euros.
- 2 days passes for 12.50 Euros.
- An even greater option is the BTI – ticket, specially designed for short city breakers that cost 16, 50 Euros and is valid for 3 days.
- 3 days passes for 18.00 Euros.
Note, though that if you like walking, probably the best thing to do is just 2 or 3 simple tickets. There are also other ticket options, but not good options for short city breaks.
Trains are punctual but will only be handy for certain districts.
All public transportation is manages by ATAC (Agenzia del Trasporto Autoferrotranviario del Comune di Roma), which has created an excellent web site from which you can get all the information you need – such as route maps, schedules, stations and ticket kiosks and agencies.
Other Ticket Options & Tips
Remember that the tickets mentioned before can be used for all the transportation system managed by the ATAC.
The “Roma Pass” is valid only for buses and the Subway and costs 36.00 Euros. What’s interesting about that is that it comes with free or discounted entrance to several of Rome’s museums and other important sights. You can also get the “Roma Pass 48 hours” for 28.00 Euros. They are both excellent options for short city breakers that plan to visit the respective museums and attractions.
Please Bear in Mind…
Be extremely careful when using means of public transportation — pickpockets are skilled and cunning! In fact, one certain route, the 64th is known as the “Pickpocket Express”!
Taxis in Rome are really expensive, so we recommend you to use one only if you don’t have another choice. In addition, due to traffic jams, taxis won’t get you where you want as fast as you wish.
Again, car rentals are seldom the best option for short city breakers. Traffic jams and crowded streets will only help you spend your time inside your car and not marveling the sights.
Other than walking, the best way to get through the medieval alleys and small piazzas of Rome is on the seat of a bicycle. Bear in mind though that Rome has numerous steep grades, so you will have to have to be in good physical conditio