The Most Capital Terrace Cafe’

April 29, 2013 / Places
Rome, Lazio

capitolino1You know it’s right there. Just an extra 5 minute walk and you’re clear of the chaos and traffic of the city. Yet for some reason you never make it as often as you should, figuring that you’re in a rush and it’s just a cappuccino e cornetto anyhow . . .

Occasionally though, you decide to go for it. This is the Capitoline hill after all, origin of the word “capital”, and you take the walk up the steps leading to the Campidoglio, Rome’s seat/building of government (capitol) since time immemorial…

capitolino2…make an immediate right at the top of the stairs, and pass through the arch…
capitolino3…walk until you find this entrance on your left and climb the stairs…
capitolino5…go through this nondescript door
…and then you remember why it’s worth the effort. The cappuccino isn’t that bad either.



by GB Bernardini

Editor, Italian Notebook

18 Responses to “The Most Capital Terrace Cafe’”

  1. Arthur Bierman

    GB, I believe it’s probably the origin of the English word “capitol”, with an “o” instead of an “capital” of which I have not much. Arthur Bierman

  2. Giuseppe Spano
    Giuseppe Spano

    As in all of italy government, not much is settled, yet as you say the trip is worth it, and the ‘cappu’ is not bad,grazie

  3. trionfale

    and while you’re heading to that view and the “not bad” cappuccio, take in the collections! The view of the Forum from the Tabularium is to die for and Marcus Aurelius is breath-taking, on and on.
    Residents of Rome get a discount on the ticket, further discounted if you have certain memberships: Feltrinelli, Bibliocard, etc…..

  4. Oh really! I didn’t even know that this bar was there, so now I cannot wait to go. Thank you.

  5. GB
    Somehow you always seem to know about all of the best kept secrets of Rome.
    Grazie Mille.
    Il Campidoglio has always one of our favorites.
    Suzanne and Ron

  6. Michelle Smith

    My favourite bar…and prices are reasonable too…and don’t think it’s too hot in the summer they have a mist-ing machine..lovely

  7. I’ve been to the Campidoglio numerous times but never suspected there was a terraced Cappuchino to be had with a world-class view.
    The terrace view in the picture is remarkably free of tourist/locals. Now of course, with this terrace posting I expect to see throngs up there on my next visit to Rome! But thank goodness, there are still plenty of undiscovered “secret treasures” of Rome…

  8. Peter Masullo

    I have been to Rome at least once a year, some times more, since 1991 and I missed this one. I once got locked in the park when they close and lock the gates that are adjacent to the Campidoglio. I will check this out for sure. Thank You.

  9. Eileen Biasone Kirk

    Can anyone name the domes from left to right that are seen from the photo taken from the Cafe? Are any of them the Vatican?
    I’m still trying to find an important location used in the film Shoes of the Fisherman with the Vatican in the background. Tks.

  10. Laura Morrison

    Grazie for making me smile! i have a paper sottotazza (under cup) from the
    “caffe’ capitolino” of the terrazza Caffarelli on my fridge. Back there in a month!

  11. I love knowing about these fabulous hidden gems…and cappuccino, too?? Fabulouso!
    Grazie, GB!

  12. Joan Schmelzle

    It is a great view, and as a matter of fact I ate lunch there on December 30, 2012, in the middle of visiting both museums and walking from Palazzo dei Conservatori to Palazzo Nuovo via the Tabularium. Decided to be waited on and sat outside quite comfortably in the area enclosed by plastic. Had ham and cheese “toast” which was good and served on not very toasted tri-color bread–yes very pale but defiitely red white and green. My journal tells me it was a long day of museum wandering, but what a great area to wander.

  13. The Caffè Capitolino on the the Piazzale Caffarelli sounds like a great place to relax. Through Google, I found that its part of the Capitoline museum but accessible to the public without paying an entrance fee. Nice to see how to get there in this post.

  14. Allan Mahnke

    We were there last October and agree completely. It’s the best view in Rome.

  15. bob paglee

    Never mind the roof terrace — just visit the superb museum. But is that the replica of Marcus Aurealius astride his horse that seems to be barely visible in your photo slightly left of the center before the entrance arch?

  16. Jane Aker

    Never go to Rome without stopping at Capitoline Cafe. Wonderful views – good deserts- Spectacular during a thunder and lightning show!


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