Once considered the capital of the world, ancient Rome is steeped in nearly 3000 years of history, culminating in a backdrop of awe-inspiring architecture. The pride of the city’s ‘golden era’, caput mundi, can still be experienced through the ancient ruins of the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Pantheon, all built during Rome’s defining era. Without even trying, the capital provides a comprehensive lesson in artistic heritage, dotted with beautiful fountains designed by Bernini, Michelangelo sculptures, Caravaggio paintings and Raphael’s frescoes, not to mention the trove of delights hidden away in the Vatican.
As you meander through the Eternal City’s picturesque streets and shady gardens, you naturally slip into the la dolce vita way of life, soaking up the city’s effortless style, perfumed with freshly-ground macchiato. With a longstanding respect for mama’s cooking, the Italian diet caters to all with crispy, thin-based pizzas, verdant salads, simple pasta dishes and, of course, a scoop or two of exquisite gelato. Located in central Italy’s Lazio region, the nearby Frascati and Castelli Romani hills ensure a steady flow of local wines, mainly white, worth exploring, including Trebbiano, Malvasia di Candia and Malvasia Puntinata.