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17 Most Visited Museums in Rome

Updated: Dec 29, 2023

There are so many exciting Museums full of history and art in Rome that one week won't be enough to visit them all. The Vatican museum is not the only beautiful museum in Rome, there are so many famous museums in Rome like the National Roman Museum group, made of 4 fantastic museums, and the Capitoline Museum to name a few.


I made a list of the 17 best and most visited museums in Rome, so you can know what is available to see in Rome and decide which ones of these you wish to visit.


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How many days do I need to visit Rome?


Rome is the capital of Italy and has been founded in 753 B.C. It has so much to offer, that you should move there to be able to explore it and see everything.


Most of the travellers don't stay more than seven days, unfortunately, to explore it and see all the museums, visit all the famous attractions and try all the best restaurants in town.


best rome museums

Are 3 days enough to visit Rome?


You can visit Rome just for a long weekend if you cannot afford to stay longer.


It can be a wonderful city break, but keep in mind that if you like art and visit some museums, wish to explore the city centre, eat in the best local restaurants and also enjoy a bit the Roman nightlife, a weekend is absolutely not enough to visit the beautiful city of Rome.


One week is the perfect time to spend in Rome,


15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

Here is a list of the most visited Museums in Rome, to help you decide which ones you would like to see the most.


In this way, you will invest your precious time visiting a place you are interested in instead of losing time seeing something you don't care about.


For each Museum, I added everything you need to know, including addresses, opening times, and the best ticket option I found online, so you will only need "one click" to purchase it and save time and money (that you will spend when in Rome drinking wine and eating gelato).


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

*Disclosure: This article contains a few affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you, I guarantee, if you purchase through my links. See it as a way to thank me and support my travel blog for all the information I provide.



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Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

1. Musei Vaticani:


Established by Pope Gregory XVI in 1836, the Vatican Museums are known everywhere in the world museum with their eight galleries and important Etruscan pieces that arrive from archaeological excavations.


The Vatican Museums are one of the most majestic and vast collections in the world belonging to the Catholic Church. They have more than 70,000 exhibits in an area of 42,000 meters.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

The collection includes vases, sarcophagus, bronzes and the Guglielmi Collection.


The unmissable inside the Vatican Museums are The Spiral Staircase, The Sistine Chapel, The Rotunda Room and Porphyry Basin, Apollo Belvedere, The Maps Room, Pinecone Courtyard, Raphael's School of Athens, Raphael's Transfiguration, Laocoön, The Tapestries Hall.

Opening Times:

Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 4 pm. They are closed on Sundays.

Address: 00120 Vatican City.



I suggest you book your skip the queue ticket here in advance because even just at 9.30 in the morning, the queue can be more than 1 kilometre long.


Book your ticket to visit the museums from Monday to Thursday. Weekend days are always jam-packed.


It is possible to visit them for free on the last Sunday of the month from 9 am to 2 pm (the last entry is at 12.30 pm). But go there a lot in advance because Rome is always full of tourists trying to save money so the queue could be kilometres long and it is very crowded inside so think if this is worth it.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

2. Villa Borghese:


Villa Borghese is a scenery garden in Rome, including several buildings, museums and attractions. It is the third-largest public park in Rome after Villa Doria Pamphili and Villa Ada.

The Villa's name derives from the first residence of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, the "Casino Nobile", built at the beginning of the seventeenth century on a project by Flaminio Ponzio and Giovanni Vasanzio and transformed into a museum in the twentieth century.


Villa Borghese is one of the most prestigious works of art from the 16th to the 18th centuries, with artists such as Raphael, Titian, Caravaggio, Bernini and Canova.


This garden is also the perfect place to have a walk in nature, where you can relax for a while after all the walking of the day, get ice cream or bring something with you for lunch and have a picnic.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday, From 9 am to 7 pm. It is closed on Mondays.


The garden entrance is free and always open, but to visit the Villa Borghese, you have to book your ticket in advance to book your slot, or you will end up without the chance to see it.

It is possible to visit it for free on the 1st Sunday of the month from 8.30 am to 7.30 pm.

Thre are differents entrance to the park: Via Aldrovandi, Via Raimondi, Via Pinciana, Piazzale San Paolo del Brasile, Piazzale Flaminio, Piazzale Cervantes, Piazzale Pablo Picasso (via di Valle Giulia).


Do you want to know more about Rome?

Check out all my articles in the "Most Complete Guide of Rome" and get all the information you need to make your next travel a success.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome
Credit: Palazzo Doria Pamphilj

3. Palazzo Doria Pamphilj:


Palazzo Doria Pamphilj concentrates on art and history, formed by nobility, politics and unions between the most significant Italian noble families. It is located in the centre of Rome. Among all the aristocratic palaces of Rome, it is the more extensive and one of the very few still in possession of the heirs of the families who built them and who still live there.


The entire area contains five courtyards, a grand monumental vestibule, three hallways, four magnificent stairways, a series of beautifully furnished rooms and a gallery that displays the works in an eighteenth-century way of one of the most well-known Italian collections of the Baroque period.

Opening times:

Fridays from 1.30 pm to 11 pm, Saturdays from 9.30 am to 7.30 pm, Sundays from 9.30 am to 7 pm.

Address: Via Del Corso 305, 00186 Roma.


Because it is open only a few days a week, I suggest you book your ticket in advance here to make sure to book your entrance to the museum.

Click here to check prices and availability to ensure it won't be sold out.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

4. Villa Farnesina:


Villa Farnesina was built in the early sixteenth century at the behest of Agostino Chigi, a wealthy banker from Siena.


The Villa Farnesina is now owned by the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei and is one of the noblest and most harmonious creations of the Italian Renaissance. The Villa was designed by the architect Baldassarre Peruzzi.


The frescoes inside were painted by masters such as Raphael, Sebastiano del Piombo, Giovanni Antonio Bazzi known as Sodoma and Peruzzi.


Opening Times:

From Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 2 pm. They are closed on Sundays.

Address: Via deal Lungara 230, 00165 Roma.


Are you looking for some fantastic sightseeing tours?

Check these out:


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

5. The National Roman Museum (Museo Nazionale Romano):


It is a group of 4 museums in Rome placed in several places in the city. It was founded in 1889 and was inaugurated a year later during the unification of Italy.


Booking is mandatory. The entrance is scheduled every 15 minutes and allows access to 14 people at a time. You can purchase an individual ticket, to see only one of these museums, or you can purchase a combined ticket that will allow you to see all four.


Explore the Palazzo Massimo, the Palazzo Altemps, the Baths of Diocletian, and the Crypta Balbi at your leisure

Check here the combined ticket to visit these four museums. Buying the combined tickets will make you save money.


These are the four museums:


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

6. National Roman Museum Palazzo Altemps:


Constructed through the fifteenth century by the Riario family and renovated a century later under Cardinal Marco Sittico Altemps, the Palazzo Altemps opened in 1997 as part of the National Museum of Rome.


Inside the Palazzo Altemps, you will see a significant collection of Greek and Roman sculpture that belonged to numerous families of the Roman aristocracy between the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The works are exhibited in beautiful rooms decorated with frescoes.


Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 7.45 pm.

Address: Piazza Sant'Apollinare 48, Rome.


Booking is mandatory. The entrance is scheduled every 15 minutes and allows access to 14 people at a time.



7. Crypta Balbi:


The Crypta Balbi was initially a theatre, a block of four apartments and a patio built between 19 and 13 BC under Lucius Cornelius Balbus. The theatre had a crypt where people used to go during the interludes of the diverse plays.

The theatre was then forgotten and hidden under other buildings. Removals on the site began in 1981, and twenty years later, the remains were revealed to the public and became part of the National Museum of Rome.

Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 7.30 pm. It is closed on Mondays.

Address: Via delle Botteghe Oscure 31, 00186 Roma.


If you would like to visit this site, click here to purchase your ticket in advance. That will make you save time and money.

Booking is mandatory. The entrance is scheduled every 15 minutes and allows access to 14 people at a time. Click here for the Crypta Balbi ticket to save money and time.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

8. Palazzo Massimo alle Terme:


This is one of the top attractions in Rome.

The Palazzo Massimo is also called Palazzo Massimo alle Terme because it is close to the Baths of Diocletian. The Villa is a majestic Neo-Renaissance style palace built between 1883 and 1887. It was a Jesuit college until 1960, and in 1981 it became part of the National Roman Museum.

Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 7.45 pm. It is closed on Mondays.

Address: Largo di Villa Peretti 2, 00185 Roma.


Booking is mandatory. The entrance is scheduled every 15 minutes and allows access to 14 people at a time, so you have to book it in advance.



9. Baths of Diocletian:


Baths of Diocletian was the largest bath complex of ancient Rome, with over 3,000 people, twice the baths of Caracalla. It was commissioned by Emperor Diocletian in 298 AD.

Even if you can see only a tiny part of the ruins, it is an extraordinary experience to do. You can also explore the tombs, which are very well preserved.

Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 7.30 pm, closed on Mondays.

Address: Viale Enrico de Nicola 79, Roma.


Explore the magical Roman Empire. Booking is mandatory. The entrance is scheduled every 15 minutes and allows access to 14 people at a time.

These are the four museums part of the National Roman Museums.


Explore the Palazzo Massimo, the Palazzo Altemps, the Baths of Diocletian, and the Crypta Balbi at your leisure

Check here the combined ticket to visit these four museums. Buying the combined tickets will make you save money.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

10. Capitoline Museums:


You can find the Capitoline Museums (Musei Capitolini) in Piazza del Campidoglio. The museums are owned and administered by the Municipality of Rome.


Pope Sixtus IV, in 1471 decided to donate a collection of priceless bronzes to the citizen of Rome, and this is how the museums were established, and they are now the oldest museums in the world. Click here to see Capitoline Museums ticket prices.

Opening Times: From Tuesday to Sunday from 9.30 am to 7.30 pm. It is closed on Mondays.

Address: Piazza del Campidoglio 1, 00186 Roma.


11. Galleria d'Arte Nazionale Antica, Palazzo Barberini:


Palazzo Barberini is a beautiful museum where you can admire over 1,400 works of art by famous artists from the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, including Tiziano, El Greco, Caravaggio, Tintoretto or Raphael and his famous portrait, La Fornarina.


Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 7 pm.

Address: Via delle Quattro Fontane 13, 00187 Roma.

Check here the Palazzo Barberini ticket prices, save money and time while visiting Rome.



12. The Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea:


It is also known as La Galleria Nazionale. It was founded in 1883 by minister Guido Baccelli and is devoted to modern and contemporary art.

Most of the collections are paintings and sculptures by Italian artists, such as Umberto Boccioni and Giacomo Balla. The museum also exhibits works by Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, and other famous modern artists.


Opening Times:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 9 am to 7 pm.

Address: Viale delle Belle Arti 131, 00197 Rome.


Check ticket prices here to save both time and money that you can spend on wine or gelato while in Rome.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

13. National Etruscan Museum:


Villa Giulia is a beautiful Renaissance building built for Pope Julius III between 1550 and 1555. The museum is famous for its vast art collections, but principally for the beauty of the building and its romantic gardens.


The Etruscan Museum was created in 1899 in Villa Giulia houses with works from pre-Roman Italian antiquity, especially from the Etruscan world.

Opening Time:

From Monday to Saturday from 9 am to 8 pm. They are closed on Sundays.

Address: Piazzale di Villa Giulia 9, 00196 Roma

If you want to visit this fascinating museum, book your ticket in advance here and save time and money.


Do you like Wine?


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

14. Villa d'Este:


Villa d'Este is one of the symbols of the Italian Renaissance and is registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is situated in Tivoli, 34 km from Rome. This charming Villa is a masterpiece of architectural and landscape glory.


The fantastic garden is famous worldwide for its marvellous fountains distinguished by enjoyable and intriguing water displays and is the most beautiful representative of the Italian Renaissance garden in Europe.

Opening Time:

From Tuesday to Sunday from 8.30 am to 4 pm (winter) and 6 pm (summer).

Address: Piazza Trento 5, 00019 Tivoli, Roma.


Valentina's Travel Guide, 15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

15. Villa Adriana:


Hadrian's Villa is another beautiful ancient site to visit in Tivoli that proves the greatness of the Roman Empire. It is one of the best kept and most seen archaeological sites in Italy. This is why it has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999.

Roman Emperor Hadrian built this Villa at the foot of the Tiburtine Hills between 118 and 138 AD. The enormous area is about 120 hectares (about 300 acres) and looks like an ancient Roman city.


You can explore many buildings, baths, temples, barracks, theatres, gardens, fountains, and nymphaeums on this site. Villa Adriana was built on two levels: the upper floor, quiet and welcoming, was a private area for the emperor's official use, while the lower floor was noisy and bustled with the work of slaves.


Opening Time:

Every day from 9 am to 5 pm (winter) and 7 pm (summer).

Address: Largo Marguerite Yourcenar 1, 00019 Tivoli, Roma.

Do you want to see everything Rome has to offer and save money at the same time?

15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

16. Leonardo da Vinci Museum:


If you have always been interested in the genius behind Leonardo Da Vinci, in Rome you will have the opportunity to explore this interactive exhibition.


Located in central Rome, this exhibition brings da Vinci’s inventions to life with a series of 3D holograms and many machines based on his sketches and plans. Learn more about da Vinci’s creativity. In Leonardo Da Vinci's interactive exhibition you will love the multimedia exhibits that bring his story to life.


Opening Time: Open every day from 9.00 am to 7.30 pm, the last entrance at 6.30 pm.

Address: Via Conciliazione 19, Roma


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15 Most Visited Museums in Rome

17. Castel Sant'Angelo:


The Mausoleum of Hadrian, usually known as Castel Sant'Angelo is building in Parco Adriano. It was initially commissioned by the Roman emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for himself and his family.


Castel Sant'Angelo was later used by the popes as a fortress and castle and is now a museum. It was once the tallest building in Rome. Check here prices and availability.


Opening Time: every day 9 am - 7.30 pm.

Address: Lungotevere Castello, 50, 00193 Roma



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About me

Hi! I'm Valentina,

but you can call me Vale.

I'm an Italian with a passion for well-planned travels and food.

In my Travel Guide, you will find everything you need to plan your perfect travel around the world.

Valentina

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