Above: A view of the Roman Forum from the Palazzo Senatorio in Rome

Rome has been a major travel destination for centuries, and the city remains a must-see in our current era of mass tourism. Its popularity results in oppressive crowds at top sites like the Sistine Chapel, the Pantheon and the Colosseum. Because I remember standing in relatively peaceful astonishment in these places 25 years ago, now I find visiting them almost unbearable.

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