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The Spanish Steps in Rome

The Spanish Steps in Rome

The Spanish Steps can be considered the Roman parlour. In the XIX century foreign writers loved staying in this Roman square, but today it is famous for its shops and for the yearly fashion show that takes place on the wonderful steps of Trinità dei Monti. The Steps, built in 1700, are not the only feature of this important Roman square. There is also the Church of Trinità dei Monti, dating back to 1500, the famous fountain of Barcaccia dating back to1600 and the column with the Madonna statue that recalls of the dogma of the Immaculate conception, dating back to the second half of the XIX century. Let’s discover the history, the description and some useful information about the area of the Spanish Steps.

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The Spanish Steps: Description and Features
The Spanish Steps are a mixture of three different elements created in different historical moments. At the center of the square, at the foot of the steps, there is the Barcaccia fountain, a work by Bernini. Its name is due to its characteristic form of a semi-plunged ship. Actually its position, under the level of the surrounding piazza, as well as its form were a genial solution to the problem of the low pressure of the water in that location for the water coming from the aqueduct of the Acqua Vergine. The ship is decorated by bees and suns that are part of the coat of arms of the Barberini, the family of Pope Urban VIII, who commissioned the work.

The marvellous steps drawn by Alessandro Specchi and Francesco De Sanctis solved the problem of how to connect the square to the church placed on the top of the steep hill of the Pincio. The steps are decorated by several garden terraces that are garnished by flowers in the spring. The church of Trinità dei Monti placed on the top of the steps is a Gothic church and its newer section dates back to 1500 and is covered by ogival vaults. Towards the half of the following century a new section characterized by barrel vaults was added to the Gothic nave. Inside the church there are some valuable cycles of fresco made by Daniele da Volterra, Perin del Vaga, Taddeo and Federico Zuccari. In particular the Deposition, a work by Volterra, is considered one of the best works of Mannerism.

On the south-eastern side of the square, the Column of the Immaculate conception lies on the base adorned by the bronze statues of Moses, David and by the prophets Isaia and Ezechiel.

Poetry lovers will definitely want to visit the Keats-Shelley House located in a building right next to the Spanish Steps.

The Spanish Steps: How to Get There
By public transport: from Termini Station you may catch the Rome Metro A line for three stops until you reach the Spagna stop. If you are arriving by car there is underground parking in Villa Borghese which shares the exit with the metro station. You can also arrive by a RomeTaxi.

The Spanish Steps: What to Visit
Piazza del Popolo, the terrace of the Pincio, and Villa Borghese are all very close to the Spanish Steps. If you want to do some shopping you are alsoat the crossroads of Via Condotti and Via del Babuino, and right down the street from Via del Corso. You will also want to take a look at's Shopping Guide for the Spanish Steps area.

The Spanish Steps: Accommodation
For some advice on where you can stay near the Spanish Steps, check out our dedicated guide Hotel Near Spanish Steps Rome, as well as our guide B&B in Rome.

The Spanish Steps: Where to eat
After visiting the square you will have the possibility of having lunch or dinner at any number of fantastic restaurants. You will be able to find them by browsing through our Restaurants in Rome guide.

The Spanish Steps: Entertainment
For some advice on Pubs in Rome check out our dedicated guide.

More and different things to come for The Spanish Steps in Rome.

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