If you’re planning a trip to Italy, Rome is probably a hot ticket on your list. It’s a common (and relatively cheap) place to fly into, and with so much to see and excellent rail services to other parts of the country, it’s an obvious choice. But Rome isn’t cheap. Eating out is a huge cost – and from personal experience, even bad restaurants are expensive. Accommodation can be a drain as well, mostly because there is such a huge demand despite a range of options.
A great way to save money is to stay in a cheaper neighbourhood. This usually is less about a compromise of safety, and more about being somewhat less convenient – but I will be honest and say many areas of Rome outside the tourist zones can be a bit gritty. That’s been slowly changing, so just be mindful. But here’s some cheap-n-cheerful Rome suggestions:
The area around the Termini Station is probably my most preferred place in Rome to stay. Why? Because if you’re arriving by rail, it’s a short walk to your hotel or pension with your luggage, instead of taxis or long crowded walks through town. And you can still walk from here to many of the major sights in Rome – there’s public transport too, of course. When I first stayed in this area about 10 years ago it wasn’t pretty – and today it can be a bit grimy, but I think it’s just as safe as elsewhere in Rome, and you can get great deals to boot.
Up one of Rome’s many hills you’ll find some fantastic, quiet boutiques, B&Bs and other accommodation – the problem here is that the smaller establishments fill up, so if you’d like to book here, you’ll have to be looking ahead of time. But what I love about this area is all the hidden groves, monuments, and other attractions that really get overlooked. I feel like this is getting the “Romantic Roman living” experience that many of us dream about.
Another railway-adjacent neighbourhood (southeast of the Termini station) is Nomentano, which has a lot of wonderful open garden spaces, ages old architecture, and several budget options for accommodation. A lot of students live in this area, which means you can also find yourself with a cold beverage relatively cheap as well – and because of those two things, you’ll find the nightlife scene pretty lively in a few parts of town. I like strolling around this area, as it has quite a relaxed vibe.
What are your tips for cheap neighborhoods in Rome?
Posted : Monday, July 18th, 2011 at 11:00
Andy Hayes is a travel journalist currently based in Seattle, Washington. When not soaking up the Pacific Northwest lifestyle or enjoying life on the road, he is spending time hanging out on his own travel lifestyle magazine, Sharing Travel Experiences.