Are there any good restaurants near Piazza Navona?
Just because this is a major tourist attraction doesn't mean it's all tourist traps.
This is actually a real Roman neighborhood and there are plenty of great spots for casual and upscale dining, aperitivo, pizza, gelato, and more!
I've been eating in this area for the past 20 years and know it like the back of my hand.
Here are my favorite places to eat near Piazza Navona in the following categories:
Click here to see a Google map of all the places listed on this page (it will open in a new window.)
Just a few notes:
There is an abundance of trattorias near and even right on Piazza Navona.
And yes, some of them are "touristy."
That can mean anything from sub-par quality food, to over-priced menus to bills that come with suspect add-ons like hand-written "service charges" that appear only on bills given to foreigners.
On the other hand, you might not mind, especially if it means sitting on the piazza and enjoying that iconic view.
But if you're looking for really good Roman restaurants near Piazza Navona, where the locals go, there are a few excellent choices:
Fiammetta restaurant was founded in 1944 by Giacinto Cristiani. His brother Varese eventually took it over and today Varese's wife Fosca and their children Lorenzo and Paola run the the restaurant and are usually on hand to welcome you.
As the founders were originally from Tuscany, you'll find a delightful menu with both Roman and Tuscan specialties.
You'll have to put an effort into finding Trattoria Lilli.
But once you do, you'll be so glad you did.
Lilli was founded in 1969 and is named for one of the founders, Loredana. Her children Patrizia and Dino run it today.
Lilli is on a quiet street, although once you step inside, you'll find yourself enjoying the buzz of local diners, happily eating their traditional plates of amatriciana and gricia, made simply and perfectly, as they should be.
La Campana claims to be the oldest restaurant in Rome, founded in 1518.
That would mean it was around when Michelangelo was alive.
I love to think that he might have eaten here, but it's actually more likely that the other Michelangelo, Michelangelo Merisi, otherwise known as Caravaggio, would have eaten here.
In the 16th century, they were not feasting on rigatoni alla carbonara (a relatively "new" addition to Roman cuisine), but you will definitely feel like you're in a traditional spot.
The first sign is the abundant antipasto/veggie bar as you walk in.
I love the spartan decor, the old-school waiters, and most of all, the traditional cucina romana.
All around Piazza Navona and on the square itself, you will find a large selection of pizzerias.
The most important factor in the quality of pizza is the quality of the ingredients.
Then, the dough must be left to rise so it does not sit like a ball in your stomach. The pizza must be digestible.
(Trust me when I tell you that the digestibility of food, in particular pizza, is a very popular topic of conversation among Italians.)
So here's where to go when you want the good stuff:
Several years ago, I would not have put this pizzeria on my list of restaurants near Piazza Navona.
There was always a huge line down the street. It was one of those "internet-recommended" places. The kind of place I avoid.
But then I ate here.
And it's the real deal.
So it's definitely worth a visit.
But if you don't want the hassle of the long line (who does?), either come early (they open at 6pm), or go to their second location 2 blocks over, which is just as good and almost never has a line.
If you're looking for super simple thin, crispy Roman pizza near Piazza Navona, head to La Montecarlo.
You'll almost feel like you're eating in a cafeteria - with the decor, speed, and prices to match.
For cheap, casual, easy Roman pizza, this is the spot.
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Emma is one of our favorite restaurants near Piazza Navona if not in all of Rome.
We eat here regularly and have probably tried everything on the menu.
But most often, we get pizza.
And it's perfect. Every. Single. Time.
Trattoria Polese has been serving up delicious simple Roman food and excellent pizza since 1960.
This is one of my favorite restaurants near Piazza Navona for eating outdoors.
They have a huge shaded outdoor seating area that gets very convivial when it's full, which is pretty much always.
You can enjoy perfectly cooked Roman-style pizza here but you also can't go wrong getting other dishes like pasta, meat, fish, etc as well.
Many restaurants near Piazza Navona are excellent options for having just an "aperitivo", or a casual drink and some snacks.
Here are some of the best options in the area:
Cul de Sac is one of the restaurants near Piazza Navona we've been coming to for years.
In fact they claim to be Rome's oldest wine bar!
Either way, I love the casual setting, the brisk, friendly service, the enormous wine list, and the great selection of both appetizers and lunch/dinner food on the menu.
Gusto is one of those restaurants near Piazza Navona that have a bit of everything.
It's not a special place per se, but what I like is how spacious it is, inside and out.
This makes it easy and fun for a casual group aperitivo.
Retrobottega (also on this page) recently opened their dedicated wine bar, Retrovino, and it's fabulous.
The space is small but the wine, food, and service are top notch.
Rome rooftop bars have become all the rage in recent years.
With good reason.
Rome has some pretty spectacular views pretty much anywhere you look!
Drinks at the Eitch Borromini rooftop will set you back but if you don't mind a little splurge, you can enjoy a pretty spectacular sunset (and sometimes opera, too!)
*You'll also find this venue below in my section about upscale restaurants near Piazza Navona.
If you're looking for someplace special to eat near Piazza Navona, there are a few excellent choices for upscale and/or innovative restaurants.
Il Convivio Troiani is a 1* star Michelin restaurant located just a few blocks from Piazza Navona.
The three Troiani brothers—Angelo in the kitchen, and brothers Giuseppe and Massimo presiding over the dining room and wine cellar—have quietly been redefining the experience of Italian eclectic alta cucina (haute cuisine) for many years.
Its subdued ambiance, excellent wine list, professional service, and superb cuisine will all make for a very special meal.
If you're looking for a restaurant with a view OF Piazza Navona, this is it.
Retrobottega was among the first Rome restaurants to really push the envelope with cutting-edge, innovative cuisine.
And they still keep it interesting and delicious, both with their food and drinks offering.
Clemente Quaglia, founder of Clotilde, has combined a beautiful, elegant locale with excellent cuisine to create someplace unique in the center of Rome.
The food at Clotilde has been carefully curated from only the freshest local ingredients, and elevates country dishes to another level.
When I was making my list of my favorite restaurants near Piazza Navona, I couldn't help but notice I have more cafés and places for pastries and breakfast than any other category.
Maybe this is because I love a cozy café, or because I have a sweet tooth, or just because there are so many great spots in the area!
Coromandel is one of the best spots in Rome for a lingering breakfast.
You can enjoy pancake, fluffy eggs, and gorgeous cappuccinos and hot chocolate in their welcoming dining room.
I can be blocks away and yet Pasticceria 5 Lune calls to me. I will beeline here if I am anywhere in the vicinity.
Besides an assortment of typical traditional pastries, you can also sample their house invention, which are these ricotta-filled crispy pockets.
Some have chocolate, some have cinnamon. All are mouth-watering and addictive.
I can smell the aroma of Antico Forno as I walk down via della Stelletta. Their pastry scents waft towards me and I am drawn in.
It also happens to be a great spot for a quick pizza or bread fix if you are in the mood for something savory.
Chiostro del Bramante is one of those secret spots I love to show friends and family when I take them around Rome.
You can easily access this café without paying for or entering the museum in the same structure.
The Renaissance cloister is a treat by itself but I usually find myself in this cosy lounge enjoying a coffee and slice of cake.
Vivi Bistrot is one of my go-to spots for breakfast in this area.
Ideally they would be open just a bit earlier for breakfast but they are open all day long and you can enjoy a casual lunch or aperitivo here too.
Café Novecento is a lovely place to stop for a coffee/tea/pastry break.
While they serve other food too, I'd come here strictly for the sweet stuff.
You will easily find gelato in many places near Piazza Navona.
But some of it is pretty mediocre.
If you want the good stuff, you have to know where to go!
Gelateria del Teatro is hands down some of the best gelato in Rome.
This is one of the best spots for a superb selection of creamy chocolate, nut, fruit and other natural flavors.
You'll only find fresh ingredients here, and you can see and taste it.
Via dei Coronari location:
A second, smaller location:
Günther gelato is on my list of the best gelato in Rome, so if you are in the area and craving gelato, do not miss this spot!
Frigidarium may be one of the most popular places to get gelato near Piazza Navona, and it's another one of those places that always has a huge line out front.
It's not artisanal gelato but it is pretty good and it does the trick when you are walking down via del Governo Vecchio in the summer heat.
Last but not least, if you are a gelato lover or a chocoholic like me, then you cannot miss having this chocolate bomb, the famous "tartufo" at Tre Scalini.
Just do it. You will thank me.
Eating it inside standing at the bar is less expensive, but if you want to splurge and enjoy this view, you can't go wrong!
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