A world-renowned Baroque work of genius by Italian architect Nicola Salvi, the Trevi Fountain is arguably Rome’s most romantic water feature and one of the city’s most recognizable landmarks.
Set at the center of Piazza di Trevi, in the Quirinale district, the Trevi Fountain is gorgeously illuminated at night and is surrounded by a half-circle of steps, on which you can sit, watch the fountain and take pictures.
The Trevi Fountain is designed to blend with the façade of the Palazzo Poli, sharing Baroque design elements. The central statue shows a grand, large carved figure of Neptune, the Roman god of freshwater and the sea, riding a seashell chariot pulled by sea horses. Figures representing Abundance and Health stand on either side.
85 feet high and 65 feet wide, the Trevi Fountain is the largest Baroque fountain in Rome, but the it maintains an intimate feel since its basin is sunk below pavement level, letting you feel close to the structure.
Note that the Trevi Square gets very crowded throughout the summer months, but if you manage to get there at a quiet time, this setting is dramatic and magnificently romantic. The fountain is available for viewing 24 hours a day, every day of the year. The Trevi Fountain captures so much of what is Rome, its history, its architecture and customs.
A Roman fixture appreciated for its art and design, the Trevi Fountain, Fontana di Trevi in Italian, has served the city of Rome both symbolically and practically for centuries. It was finished in year 1762 and serves aesthetics as well as function, as it marks the end of the Aqua Virgo aqueduct, which transports fresh water to the city and supplies water to adjacent fountains.
Beware of vendors selling items here, especially roses, as they usually try to shove their items in your hands and once you have touched them, they insist you have to buy them. Just keep your hands to your sides and say No, grazie politely but firmly. Watch out for pickpockets too.
Make a wish at the Trevi Fountain
A popular legend says that you should throw two coins into the Trevi Fountain and make a wish. The first coin grants your wish and the other ensures a return trip to Rome. The specific procedure is to turn your back to the fountain and throw the coins with your right hand over the left shoulder. The Trevi Fountain collects approximately €3000 in coins every day. This money is used to finance various charities, including the Italian Red Cross and a food bank.
Trevi Fountain in the Movies
Hollywood has come to Italy’s capital city to use the Trevi Fountain in a number of notable films. Movies like William Wyler’s Roman Holiday, Federico Fellini’s La Dolce Vita and especially Three Coins in the Fountain have helped to make the Trevi Fountain famous around the world. The 1954 Hollywood movie Three Coins in a Fountain was the very first film using the CinemaScope format outside of the USA and popularized the legend.