Termini Station is not my favorite place in Rome. It is, however, Rome’s main train station and so it plays a role in my transit life. And for some reason, I always seem to be traveling through Termini around meal time.
If you are traveling in and out of Rome, you’ll also probably be dealing with Termini. And there is a good chance that you’ll need to eat near Termini too.
Your choices for eating near the train station really depend on how much time you have. The list below makes suggestions based on if you have 30 minutes, one hour, or two hours and then some.
Buon appetito and buon viaggio!
Where to eat near Termini if you have 30 minutes or less:
Trains are a great travel option in Italy because they can be less hassle. The train station is in the center of Rome, and there is no need to show up crazy early for check in or security. That being said, you can cut it pretty close to your departure time. If you have 30 minutes or less before your train leaves, you are going to have to stay IN the train station to eat.
There is a supermarket on the underground level, near the exit to Via Marsala. Beeline here if you are hoping to pick up picnic fixings to eat on the train. (Keep in mind that most Italians don’t eat on trains, but I say go for it if you have a long trip ahead of you). The supermarket has a pizza counter where you can get fresh baked products. There is a large section for fruit and vegetables, cheese, and olives, salami, etc. You can really find anything you might want.
If you prefer something ready-made, head up to La Terrazza. This is on the level ABOVE the trains, which is accessible via the central escalators. (Hint – they are the only ones that go up). The terrace level has a few bakeries and a hamburger joint. I think it is best for breakfast because the Sorrento-style bar does pretty good pastries.
Where to eat near Termini if you have more than 1 hour:
Rome’s Mercato Centrale: I was impressed with Mercato Centrale when it opened – though I was confused as to why it was located at Termini. However, this is a great location for visitors and travelers. Mercato Centrale has everything from Bonci pizza that is ready to go, to upscale sit down restaurants. You can find pizza, pasta, trapizzini and gelato. Literally something for everyone. The central market is located a tiny bit far from the main platforms, which is why I suggest that you have an hour or more. Of course, the more time you have the more options you have in terms of where to eat – the market has a lot of great options.
Where to eat near Termini if you have 2 hours or more:
Even with two hours, I would still say check out Mercato Centrale. But this extra time gives you even more options for eating outside of Termini and heading into the neighborhoods on either side of the station.
Trattoria Dell’Omo: Craving old school Roman cuisine? I love the never-trying-too-hard vibe of Dell’Omo. The family run restaurant is on a little street very close to Termini. I would suggest going only if you have 1.5 hours or more before the train only because it is a sit-down restaurant with a regular menu. The wait time for a table and food can never really be guaranteed, so you’ll be more relaxed if you go with plenty of time to spare. Try the gnocchi on Thursdays, and get an extra glass of wine if you find that you have more time to kill before your train’s departure.
da Nazzareno: In a similar vein, da Nazarene offers a sit down option for meals that is a very short walk from Termini station. It was Gillian who tipped me off to da Nazzareno, when she wrote that it was her husband’s favorite spot for cacio e pepe. The restaurant is decidedly more touristy than dell’Omo but also quite a bit speedier for service.
Janta Indian Fast Food: Heading into Esquilino is not a great idea if you have a lot of luggage because it requires a bit of a walk. However, the neighborhood adjacent to Termini has some of the best non-Italian food in the city. For a budget option, dig into the daily specials at Janta Indian Fast Food. If it is before 1 pm, you can also check out Mercato Esquilino for a bit of atmosphere (but alas there is no prepared food to be had).
Eataly: Heading north out of the station, you can stock up on gourmet goodies and sit down for a meal at the Eataly on Piazza della Repubblica. The Italian wonderland is a good place to stock up on foodie souvenirs for friends at home, but it also has a restaurant with an extensive menu. Again, it is a bit of a hike with a lot of luggage but more doable than Esquilino if you have carryon bags or are traveling even lighter.
Do you have any other favorite spots to eat near Termini?