- WHERE TO STAY
- CRUISE PORTS
The area around Termini Station is the largest single hotel district in Rome and with good reason.
In terms of the logistics of visiting Rome's sights it is ideal being the terminus of both of Rome's airport bus and train connections as well as being the main train station for Rome.
In short when you arrive in Rome, there is a very good chance you'll pass through Termini Station. Termini Station is also the central hub of Rome's public transport system and hop on, hop off sightseeing buses so in terms of getting around independently it is the best location in Rome in this respect.
And because of the large number of hotels in the vicinity, there is a wide choice of accommodation to suit all budgets and the severe competition keeps rooms rates down.
Termini Station is the centre of everything in the district. Termini Station itself is like a small town. The ground floor of the station is very similar to any major cities main railway station.
On the south west side of the station where the Leonardo Express train from Fiumicino Airport pulls in there is a useful left luggage facility.
Otherwise its the usual fast food, cafés, bars and bookstands you would expect to find at any major rail station. It is quite a spacious station taking into consideration the volumes of people passing through.
Up on the balcony are more substantial restaurant options and there is an American themed steak/chicken place at the North East exit by the exit to the Airport buses.
Underneath the ground floor there is a large shopping centre which you have to wander through on the way to the Metro. There is a useful mid-size supermarket at the North East end and there are toilets here too.
In the immediate surrounding area of Termini Station to the North East and South West are a maze of streets in a grid pattern hectic with hustle and bustle, markets, shops selling cheap general goods and watches, fast and not so fast food.
Especially on the north-east side of the station there are plenty of services catering for the backpacker level traveller, launderettes, internet cafés and cheap phone kiosks abound.
Things soon quiet down as you move away from the station. You will find hotels along every street with restaurants that spill out onto the cramped pavements, like the one pictured left.
In terms of eating, you are overwhelmed with choice - of course pizza and pasta dominate but if you can't find anything here that suits your taste and budget then you've got a real problem finding anywhere in Rome.
Out the front of Termini Station past the bus station towards Repubblica things are more spread out and there is a more upmarket, elegant feel.
It's a favourite place to just hang out. To one side of the Piazza are a row of second hand bookstalls.
The Piazza itself is quite impressive, though overwhelmed with traffic. You start to get a taste of the 'Ancient Rome' you come all this way for. The square is home to a beautiful church called the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli, and Diocletian's Baths.
There are well over a hundred hotels around Termini Station covering all budgets. We highlight some of the best value options in each market sector.
The competition ensures competitive rates, but are highly seasonal. Rates can be well over double in the summer peak over rates in late November and January.
There is a total absence of most of the familiar hotel chain brands, only Best Western have a good presence in the district. A lot of the smaller, cheaper hotels are in buildings they share with other hotels, taking a floor or even sharing a floor in a typically 7 or 8 storey building.
There are few purpose built modern hotels. Many of the hotels ooze character. It is surprising how sometimes you can walk off one of the bustling streets into a hotel and be transformed into a small garden oasis or courtyard with just the sound of a small fountain.
As a broad guide you will find cheap hotels in the immediate area of Termini Station whilst the more luxurious hotels tend to gravitate to the front of the hotel towards Piazza Repubblica.
The area around Termini Station isn't blessed with much in the way of A list sights, its main forte is as the best transport hub to get to all of the main sights quickly and cheaply by public transport or ho-ho bus.
The biggest attraction around Termini is perhaps the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, a 5-minute walk from Termini Station or the Diocletian's Baths almost in front of Termini Station.
It is out front of Termini Station around Diocletian's Baths and Piazza Repubblica that most people get their first taste of the ancient ruins and basilica's that dominate most people's visits to Rome.
The Colosseum is about a 20-minute walk from Termini Station, but the vast majority take the Metro.
Staying at a hotel around Termini Station is quite simply the best location to independently explore from in Rome at a pace to suit yourself. The Rome public transport is system is excellent, though crowded and a public transport pass makes it very simple and very cheap too.
The Colosseum, Spanish Steps and the Vatican all have direct Metro trains from Termini Station. A dense network of buses radiating out from Termini Station Bus Station will cover everywhere else.
All of the popular Rome hop on, hop off sightseeing bus lines use Termini Station as their base too.
If you don't want to use taxis from either of Rome's airports then whichever airport bus or airport train transfer you use it is going to terminate at Termini Station.
If you are staying anywhere else in Rome you will need a taxi or to carry your luggage with you on the public transport system from Termini Station.
If you are going on a cruise from Rome's cruise port Civitavecchia its a choice between a very expensive taxi or the very cheap and frequent trains from Termini Station to Civitavecchia.