The most original places of Rome: the Esquilino, every day a crossroads of people and cultures
The Esquiline district took its name by the homonymous hill where it is situated - do you remember the famous seven hills of Rome? Its name means "glandiferous tree dear to Jupiter", it maybe comes from the name of the guards (Excubie) Romulus used to protect the boundaries of his city from the raids of Tazio, head of the Sabine peoples. From the top of the hill, inhabited since the sixth century B.C., you can enjoy one of the most fascinating views of Rome.
Morphology of the hill
The Esquiline is composed of 3 summits: the Colle Oppio, the Colle Fagutale and the Colle Cispio, respectively located in the southern part, in the western tip and in the northern area. The last two hills, to be honest, belong to Monti district.
The origins of the district
Going back in time, the area was unhealthy, marshy, and used as a cemetery of slaves, prostitutes and people condemned to death. Although several famous people chose the Esquiline as their home over time, in the Middle Ages, the hill hosted the rejected of society and it became a meeting point for mysterious rites. Only after the works commissioned by Pope Gregory XIII the area took a first urban setting, by the opening of Via Gregoriana - today Via Merulana - which connected two important places of worship of the Eternal City - Santa Maria Maggiore and San Giovanni in Laterano. The first division of Rome into districts, commissioned by Pope Benedict XIV in the eighteenth century, merged the Esquiline with Monti district. It got its independence back only in 1874. Its rural and wild connotation remained alive until the Kingdom of Italy. After the conquest of Rome the Esquiline actually was occupied by construction companies spreading around there. It therefore lost its green areas and gardens replaced by the new Piedmonts’ tradition.
The Esquiline district today
As you think about the Esquiline today, the first thought you have is its nickname "China Town", that is the area of the city chosen by the Chinese citizens to work and live, like the Little Italy, where Italian emigrants established in the United States to recreate the homely atmosphere so lacking when you live far from your origins.
The district hosts one of the most important ethnic markets in the capital, so many people looking for exotic ingredients for their dishes do shopping there. Nowadays, therefore, the district is constantly frequented by people from all over the world bringing a piece of their culture, creating a great picture of a thousand colours and peculiar scents. Even the Roman features characterise this place, maybe one of the best interpretations of the Roman culture. Also for this reason, you can't miss a walk to the Esquiline, where the ancient world perfectly blends with the modernity of a cosmopolitan reality.
Termini, the crossroads of the city
Termini is Rome's central station, the main meeting point of rail and underground traffic. There, all the high-speed trains depart or pass through, as it is a fundamental point for the several regional routes branching out towards the cities in the outskirts of the Capital. Even the two main lines of the Rome underground find their nucleus in Termini, being the exchange station of line A and line B. Termini and the district where it is situated are a daily crossroads of people from all over the world.
Piazza Vittorio, the centre of the world
The full name of the square is Vittorio Emanuele II, but the Roman people know it as Piazza Vittorio. The first feature visitors see is the uniqueness of this square compared to the others of the Roman panorama, as it is completely arcaded. This feature is a clear reference to the Piedmonts past of the district. The centre is decorated with by a large garden. The Chinese district is situated all around the square, and the market gets animated during the day. The multi-ethnic orchestra (Orchestra di Piazza Vittorio) got its name by this square. It was founded in 2002, thanks to the support of intellectuals and artists who worked for the redevelopment of the Esquiline district and the integration of different ethnic communities.
What can you see in the Esquiline district
The places of Christian worship, as well as some deconsecrated chapels are numerous and all worth of a visit. Among the main ones, we remember the Basilica of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme, the Basilica of Sant'Antonio da Padova all'Esquilino and the Church of San Pietro in Vincoli. The district also houses some archaeological remains, such as Porta Maggiore, part of the Aurelian Walls erected to protect the city in the first century. The door is what remains of the water show where the aqueducts that fed Rome converged. It is also possible to admire the monumental tomb outside Porta Maggiore, the Sepulchre of Eurisace, built in imitation of a baker's oven to homage to the occupation of its guest. Talking about places of culture, the district hosts various museums, including the Historical Liberation Museum, the National Roman Museum and the National Museum of Musical Instruments. In Via Nazionale, Palazzo delle Esposizioni deserves a visit. Lastly, on the Esquiline, it is possible to enjoy the shows of the Ambra Jovinelli Theatre in the evening or, for the enthusiasts, Teatro dell'Opera.
Why to choose the Esquiline for your stay
The desire to feel part of this fulcrum of the city of Rome and of the people there certainly is a great reason to visit the area and to decide to stay nearby. If you are aware of the advantages of staying in an apartment compared to, for example, a hotel, we suggest you to consider the apartments offered by Comfort Stay in Rome (www.comfortstayinrome.com) - the Comfort Stay Colosseo is the closest apartment to the Esquiline, easily reachable both by an enjoyable walk or the means of transport (underground, bus, tram). The apartment, equipped with every comfort to ensure an optimal stay, accommodates up to 4 people.
Do you want to stay in Rome?
For this location we recommend Comfort Stay in Rome, ideal for discovering Rome thanks to its strategic position.Book now