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Rome: A Cultural Guide for “On A Budget” Travelers

Rome: A Cultural Guide for “On A Budget” Travelers

Oh Rome, the eternal city…

This city has so many monuments and historical buildings that one can say that the city itself is an open-air museum.

As a consequence visiting Rome can be quite expensive for “on a budget” travelers. But…and this is a really important “but”, if you want to visit Rome on a low-budget and have not yet bought your ticket, you can organize your trip in a way that will definitely help you save some real money and still visit some of the most famous monuments in the world, like the Colosseum and the Vatican City Museums!


So, if you are planning to visit the VATICAN CITY this is what you will have to pay:

Full entry ticket – € 16.00

Full entry ticket “Skip the Line” – € 16.00 + 4.00

You also have special fees for students, seniors, pilgrims, etc. (you can check them here)

First important “BUT” – the Vatican Museums and the Cappella Sistina are FREE (yes…you read me well…FREE!!!) on the last Sunday of each month! Just remember that it closes earlier (at 14 pm) on this day and you will only be able to enter between 9:30 am and 12:30 pm.

If you want to visit the COLOSSEUM here are the fees:

Full Ticket – € 12,00

Reduced Ticket – € 7,50 (european union people between 18 and 25 years old)

You also have special fees (you can check them here)

Second important “BUT” – If you are in Rome on the first Sunday of the month, the Colosseum is also FREE on this day – obviously the queue is enormous, but if you want to save money, it’s worth wasting a little time in line. This also includes the Roman forum, Palatine and current exhibitions.

There are also many other monuments and museums that are FREE on the first Sunday of every month. Here is a list:

  • Domus Aurea
  • Galleria Borghese
  • Scavi di Ostia Antica
  • Museo Ostiense
  • Mausoleo di Cecilia Metella
  • Terme di Caracalla
  • Villa dei Quintili
  • Villa Adriana a Tivoli
  • Villa d’Este a Tivoli
  • Galleria Nazionale Arte Moderna
  • Musei nazionale Etrusco di Villa Giulia
  • Museo Hc Andersen
  • Museo Praz
  • Museo Boncompagni LudovisiMusei Nazionale Romano (Palazzo Massimo, Palazzo Altemps, Crypta Balbi,
  • Terme di Diocleziano)
  • Galleria nazionale d’Arte Antica Palazzo Barberini
  • Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica Palazzo Corsini
  • Galleria Spada
  • Museo Nazionale di Palazzo Venezia
  • Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant’Angelo
  • Museo nazionale d’Arte Orientale “G.Tucci”
  • Museo Nazionale Preistorico Etnografico
  • Museo nazionale delle Arti e Tradizioni Popolari
  • Museo nazionale dell’Alto Medioevo
  • Museo nazionale degli Strumenti Musicali

For more information you can visit this site.

Free access does not always include a visit to the exhibitions in progress.

TIP – So the best way to save some money and still visit almost every monument and museum of Rome for FREE is to book your stay so you can be there on the end of the month and take advantage of all you can do on the last Sunday of the month and the first Sunday of the month that follows!


You can see the Pope in Piazza San Pietro, for FREE (how it should be)! You will only have to check the Pope schedule in advance here.


We had the opportunity to visit Rome in Easter.

Without a doubt, the most important Easter event in Italy is the Via Crucis (Stations of the Cross) on Good Friday. From year to year, the Pope either personally carries the cross from Station to Station, or presides over the celebration from a stage on the Palatine Hill as others carry it. Even for someone that is not religious, it’s a beautiful ceremony.

TIP – The ceremony usually starts at 9pm. Try to enter earlier or you will have to stay on a long line!


Here is a list of free monuments, museums and places you can visit all year round:

  • Fontana di Trevi (in the above photo)
  • Villa Borghese gardens
  • Campo di Fiori
  • Appia Antica
  • Phanteon
  • Piazza San Pietro
  • Saint Peter’s Basilica
  • Piazza Navona
  • Scalinata di Spagna
  • Saint Maria della Vittoria Church
  • Gianicolo Hill
  • San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane
  • San Giovanni in Laterano
  • Santa Maria Maggiore
  • Santa Maria del Popolo
  • Stadio dei Marmi
  • Vittorio Emanuele II


Not all tours in Rome are paid. Many companies offer tours that you can do for FREE! This post is not sponsored so this is just a list of some of the companies that might have something that you are interested in. We do not have an opinion about them and we advise you to search more information about this.

Rome Free Walking Tour

New Rome Free Tour

Free Tours in Rome

Free Tour Rome

Veni Vidi Visit

Free Pantheon Tour

Rome’s Ultimate



You can download the below touristic map here, to help you plan your trip!

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