On our final day in Rome we took the time to explore the morning market at Campo de’ Fiori before leaving the city. There has been a daily market at this square for various products since the second half of 1800s and today it serves both locals and tourists alike. Certainly, there are plenty of things that vendors are trying to hawk on the tourist crowd (just look for any sign with “Made in Italy” on it) but there’s also lots of fresh produce and other things worth checking out. The market lasts from around 7:00am to 2:00pm and I’d suggest showing up during the first few hours of operation since that’s when the food selection will be at its best.
Campo de’ Fiori’s name translates to “field of flowers” and the name comes from the fact that until the 1400s it was an undeveloped field. If you visit Campo de’ Fiori and look at the structures surrounding the square you’ll notice that there isn’t much in the way of architectural harmony between them—a result of there never being a formalized style or code for the buildings that were constructed there. In the middle of the square is a statue of Giordano Bruno, a heretical philosopher who was burned alive in the square. I like to call him “Darth Giordano” because he looks kind of like a Sith Lord. Every day Darth Giordano keeps watch over the morning market and at night he can look particularly menacing when bathed in the dim lights of the cafes surrounding the square.