As soon as I arrive in Rome Piazza della Rotonda is always my first destination. It’s a place that feels as warm as your favorite comfort food on any day that you just needed a little peace and tranquility. Something feels spiritual about this place, and being in the close proximity of the marvelous Pantheon is what draws us all.
The square is crowded every day of the week. Tourists, Italians, street vendors, musicians, beggars, all fill the piazza adding to the charm and character of the place. Most are here, as I, because it is a place that you want to be at and be a part of.
People sit at the many cafes that line 3 sides of the square and drink prosecco in a perfect setting while toasting to being at the Pantheon in Rome. They have arrived, and they feel it. There must be 10 or 12 cafes in Piazza della Rotonda and their outside seating is always full.
In the center of the piazza people gather and sit on the steps surrounding the famous Fontana del Pantheon. Eating and drinking and admiring, and if like myself, feeling a sense of contentment and wonder for such a place. Many times I have purchased Italian beers from the little salumeria shop in the square and sat on these steps for what seems like hours just staring at the Pantheon and wondering about it’s long storied past and of all those that have come to this place. I listen to those around me explaining to friends and family that the Pantheon was constructed in 1025AD and is the single best preserved ancient structure of Rome and all manner of other important details and facts.
From the windows of hotels lining the piazza newly wedded brides gaze out at the crowds gathered in the square as must have been a tradition for centuries. People cheer and clap. This is after all, a place of romance. Beautiful music fills the air, couples hold hands, and the wine flows freely as hugs and kisses and laughter is everywhere.
Piazza della Rotonda is a place of solace, of soul, and wonder. It is magical. That’s why I will always come back to Piazza della Rotonda, as in my mind I am already there.