Rome’s Piazza dell’Esquilino is located on the north eastern side of the Basilica of Saint Mary Major, the first important tourist attraction between the central station Roma Termini and the Colosseum.
Piazza dell’Esquilino Rome
Although one has the impression that the Piazza dell’Esquilino is located at the front side of the Basilica, it is in reality the back one is looking at. To get to the entrance you will have to walk around the church.
The obelisk in the middle of the square used to adorn the Mausoleum of Augustus. In 1857 the architect Domenico Fontana brought it to the Piazza dell’Esquilino, by order of Pope Sixtus V Peretti. The second obelisk that used to be located at Augustus’ Mausoleum can now be found on the Piazza del Quirinale.
The famous architect Gian Lorenzo Bernini used to live on the western side of the square, on no. 29.
Piazza dell’Esquilino took its present shape in the 18th century. Until 1999 it used to serve as a parking lot, but nowadays it is strictly pedestrian.