If you want to get to know Rome, going on one of our Colosseum Tours is mandatory. This iconic symbol of the Eternal City has been synonymous with Rome for more than 2,000 years. Very little can claim to be as enduring as this Roman monument to power.

But following in the footsteps of the gladiators is hungry work.

Way back in the past, when the Colosseum was a public works building very much in use, Romans would enjoy free bread provided by the largesse of the emperor (a smart political move to stay in power). Today, you’ll have to take care of your own food needs, but our post will point you in the direction of some of the best spots for breakfast in the city of la dolce vita.

Breakfast in Rome near the Colosseum

The good news is that Rome is teeming with delicious food. Eating, and eating well, is a huge part of living the good life, and Romans have elevated good food to an art form.

That doesn’t mean that you need to blow the budget. One of Rome’s many charms is that locals and visitors to the city intermingle and eat at the same restaurants and cafes. Prices are reasonable to keep local punters coming back.

A typical Roman breakfast is different from an American one.

Hot, milky coffee (caffè latte) with bread and pastries, butter and jam, are a mainstay. A cornetto is a type of Italian croissant and is made of sweetened dough. Hard, rusk-like bread, called fette biscottate often feature, and hot chocolate is the breakfast drink of choice for children.

That said, don’t feel that you won’t be able to get bacon and eggs, or something more along those lines, if that is what you feel like for breakfast. A lot of places will accommodate different breakfasts styles.

rome cafe cafe milkshakes

Refreshing raspberry and mint milkshakes in Café Café

In fact, Café Café, right around the corner from the Colosseum, on Via Dei Santi Quattro, is the perfect place to begin your day of Colosseum sightseeing if scrambled eggs and grilled pancetta (thin slices of pork charcuterie) are what you need. This little eatery is well regarded for its fresh, wholesome food at budget-conscious prices.

If you’re a pizza lover, and who isn’t, Café Café will indulge you with their pizza menu for breakfast. It is also highly renowned for its fruit smoothies and a wide selection of herbal teas (more than 40 at last count).

Open seven days a week, this little restaurant is as highly regarded by Romans, grabbing a bite as they start their day, as it is by visitors to the city.

rome breakfast pastry


A morning cappuccino is something of a ritual in Rome. And you’ll encounter some of the best cappuccinos in the Eternal City when you step into Bar La Licata. Although located in the tourist area just five minutes from the Colosseum, La Licata enjoys a reputation as a “local” hangout.

This espresso bar does coffees, pastries and sandwiches and is open from 05h30 in the morning six days a week. It’s closed on Sundays.

Antico Forno Serpenti is a pizzeria that opens at 8 am six mornings a week and at 9 am on Sundays. While mouthwatering, thin-crust pizza is its main claim to fame, the eatery also offers a wide range of delectable sweet pastries and some of the best coffees to be had in Rome.

Eating brunch in the Eternal City

rome cafe

Gran Caffe Rossi Martini

We all know how delicious brunch can be. Enjoy brunch in the beautiful city of Rome and that delicious factor can be off the scale! So close it’s nearly within the Colosseum’s walls is Gran Caffe Rossi Martini. Just a little over half a mile away from the Roman monument, Gran Caffe Rossi Martini is open seven days a week from 9 am to midnight.

The restaurant has been open since the 1920s. This is a place that takes pride in its history and the staff is all well-dressed in black and white smart uniforms.

Everything on the menu is a temptation! From simple pastries (the current proprietor focuses exclusively on providing the highest quality pastry in the city) to pasta and seafood options that are guaranteed to make your mouth water. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options are included in the menu.

rome sandwich at Pane & Vino

Opening a little later, at 10 am, throughout the week, Pane & Vino does exactly what it says on the tin. This sandwich shop is all about serving bread and wine.

Just half a mile away from the Colosseum, this little shop punches above its weight for food and service. Vegetarian options are included on the menu, but the best seller is a huge porchetta (pork) sandwich which sells for approximately $9.

Rome colosseum restaurant

The best breakfast views of the Colosseum

Finally, for a beautiful brunch that may even be considered lunch, the gorgeous Ristorante Aroma at Palazzo Manfredi is one to consider. This restaurant definitely falls in the “treat yourself” bracket as the prices are higher. But, trust us, every dollar spent will be well spent as you experience the Roman cooking, atmosphere and view.

The restaurant seats 28 people and is located on the rooftop of Palazzo Manfredi. And guess what you look straight onto? The Colosseum! It feels so close you could almost touch it, and your unparalleled view from Ristorante Aroma is definitely something to see.

The elegant menu is varied, but a special focus is shown to sustainable seafood dishes. The restaurant also offers a highly select wine list, showcasing the very best wines from Italian vineyards.

Eat and drink and live the good life in Rome

You’ll see evidence of la dolce vita wherever you are in Rome. Living the good life is more of an attitude than anything else. It’s reveling in the sheer good luck of finding yourself in the Eternal City.

Discovering more about the gladiators on a Colosseum tour, and eating something mouthwatering is Rome in the shadows of this great monument is about as perfect as a day can get. Buon appetito!