Rome is famed for straddling seven hills, yet it frequently feels like several cities. Of course, there's the old one — the Rome of emperors and amphitheaters, which is still apparent today. Then there's magnificent, baroque Rome, with its enormous squares, florid cathedrals, and fountains, each more spectacular than the last. The Dolce Vita ambiance may still be found in exquisite stores, cafés, and restaurants, as well as iconic hotels on Via Veneto. However, Rome is also contemporary, with once residential neighborhoods such as Testaccio, Monti, and Ostiense now attracting tourists for their nightlife as much as the classic regions.

Everything blends into one timeless gumbo. In a single day, you may travel from a Roman emperor's house to a hipster market; you can peel away the layers just by entering a church's basement. Of course, all of this excess requires some moderation. That should be found at the Vatican, but instead, you'll discover Michelangelo's, Sistine Chapel. When it all becomes too much, there are the parks: the Giardino Degli Aranci, with its breathtaking vistas of St. Peter's dome; the Villa Borghese, whose extensive grounds house numerous museums; and the Via Appia Antica, a Roman route strewn with mausoleums, catacombs, and old aqueducts.

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