With its spectacular butterfly design, the world-famous “Scalinata Spagna” or Spanish Steps is one of the finest examples of the Roman Baroque style architecture.
A wide gathering place, it connects the steep slope between the lower Piazza di Spagna and the Piazza Trinita dei Monti at the top, with its marvellous twin tower church dominating the skyline. Arguably the best place to sit down and soak the magnificent views and atmosphere of the Eternal city of Rome, Spanish Steps consists of 138 steps deliberately placed in a mix of straight flights, curves, terraces, and vistas.
While it may sound odd to hear of a ‘Spanish’ landmark designed by an Italian architect, funded by a French diplomat, in the Italian capital, ‘Scalinata Spagna’ derives its name from ‘The Piazza di Spagna’, which is named after the Spanish Embassy located nearby. In fact, the steps were built in the 18th century to connect the Embassy with the Holy See — often called the seat of the Catholic Church—in the square below.
Why visit the Spanish Steps?
While the steps are undoubtedly a superb meeting spot with plenty of room to sit and relax, visitors should also pay attention to nearby edifices and a baroque-style fountain that is made into the shape of a half-sunken ship with water overflowing its sides into a small basin.
And that’s not all; Spanish Steps are also famous for housing wonderful events throughout the year. In Rome, the beginning of spring is welcomed by adorning the steps with pots of bright pink azaleas, which makes it a truly unforgettable sight for those who happen to pay a visit to the city during that time of the year.
Open all year round, Spanish Steps and the Piazza di Spagna can be visited at all hours of the day. Not only you can relax sitting on the steps but also enjoy people watching on a lazy Sunday!