If you have booked a romantic break to the Eternal City, you will need to know the most couple-friendly sites to visit.
Obviously the Trevi Fountain is first on the list – the place where newly married couples often have their wedding photos taken, although you will find newlyweds posing all over the Eternal City, as they stage the traditional post-wedding passeggiata.
But Rome also has some of the most romantic artefacts in the world and for marrieds – or soon-to-be marrieds – a visit to Villa Giulia is essential.
Situated in the Parioli district on Via di Villa Giulia, the villa itself was built for Pope Julius III and houses the National Etruscan Museum, including one of the most romantic artworks in the city: The Sarcophagus of the Spouses (Sarcofago degli Sposi).
Sarcophagus of the Spouses, Villa Giulia, Rome – Creative Commons licence (Gerard M)
It might not seem very romantic to visit a sarcophagus, but the late sixth century work is known for its touching depiction of marital love. It is thought to be one of the masterpieces of the Etruscan era, which ran the 8th century BC to the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC. The sarcophagus is made from terracotta – but once it would have been richly decorated with brightly coloured paint. Love may fade in this life – but obviously it never dies.
You can reach Villa Giulia by walking north from Piazza del Popolo – or take a romantic stroll hand-in-hand along the River Tiber and turn right into Via di Villa Giulia.
Need something romantic to do after visiting Villa Giulia? Stroll back to Piazza del Popolo and down Via del Babuino to Piazza di Spagna, where you will find Babingtons Tea Shop at the foot of the Spanish Steps. Frequented by some of the most romantic poets in the world – including Byron and Shelley.
The Borghese Gardens are also a lovely place for a romantic stroll – and the gardens are even heart-shaped! You cannot get more romantic than that!
A quiet spot in the Borghese Gardens could be perfect for that romantic proposal!
Images copyright A. Meredith except where stated.
Fancy some romance in Rome?
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Set off to the Eternal City for a weekend of surprises in ROME ALONE, as unhappy housewife Bee and newly-divorced Alzheimer’s expert Dr Neil McCarthy leave from opposite ends of the country for a mini-break full of the unexpected that will change their lives forever as they make their way round the sites. Return to Rome with them three years later in ROME AGAIN and discover the forces at work which they never suspected on their first trip.
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In VERONA ALONE, newly divorced former cellist Moira decides to fulfil a girlhood dream of visiting Verona during the summer opera season. There she is taken under the wing of a quirky and generous American who appears to have a secret, which is only discovered when she finds herself all at sea with him. VERONA AGAIN sees three couples fight to save their relations – who will succeed, who will fail and who will lose the love of their life?
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All books contain adult themes, dark humour and sexual content.