Most international flights come into Leonardo da Vinci airport, which everyone calls Fiumicino after the nearby town. It’s easy enough to get into central Rome from here – just jump on the Leonardo Express and you’ll be there in about half an hour. It costs €14.
The other Rome airport is Ciampino, used by some of the budget carrier, which doesn’t have such great transport links, although there is an irregular bus to take you close to the city centre from where you’ll need to get on the metro.
Alternatively you could take one of the dozens of taxis waiting outside the airport.
International trains arrive and depart from Rome’s Stazione Termini a heaving transport hub not far from the historical centre.
Getting around Rome by public transport is relatively easy as buses, trams, metro and suburban railways are all integrated and use the same tickets. By a biglietto (ticket) at tabacchi (distinguished by a big black “T”, news stands and from vending machines. One ticket lasts for 75 minutes and must be validated when you get on the bus or tram.
There are hundreds of bus lines in Rome and dozens of night buses, which mostly run from Piazza Venezia.
During the day, Bus 64 – which runs from Rome’s Termini to the Vatican – and Bus 40 – which is the express version of the same route – are particularly useful.
There are currently two metro lines in Rome, although metro linea c (red) is recently opened it is not connected to the other 2 lines yet.. Rome’s metro is usually very crowded, but easy to use and a big help if you’re going somewhere that’s situated close to a stop. Again, tickets (biglietti) can be bought at the Tabacchi stands or vending machines.
Rome’s trams are part of the same integrated ticket system as the metro and bus and are just as easy to use. Any tram from Largo Torre Argentina takes you into the wonderful Trastevere neighbourhood of Rome.
Rome’s taxis have a reputation for ripping tourists off, but they are fine to use as long as you only use the official metred yellow or white version. It’s almost impossible to hail one in the street, particularly at night, but you can call and order one. Insist that the metre is used. To call for a taxi within Rome, try 06 3570, 06 4994, 06 6645, 06 551, or 06 8822.
Where to stay
Following in the footsteps of the Palace Hostel, the Downtown quickly grew a following and became a haven for budget minded travellers from around the world.