Results 11-20of 22 Reviews
NY, New York
July 25, 2005
Piazza di Spagna
From journal Simply Italy
St. Louis, Missouri
June 29, 2005
The steps are at their prettiest in the spring, when they're covered with flowers. Unfortunately, though, between the tourists and the vendors attracted there by the tourists, the steps are usually crowded. The vendors are also unusually persistent, and consequently, in my opinion, the piazza is a nice place to see but not to stay for very long.
From journal A Study Abroad Semester in Rome
January 18, 2005
Although the Trinità dei Monti church and Piazza di Spagna has been paid for by the French, the square has been named after the Spanish embassy to the Pontifical States that was based here.
To me, the steps and the square are best approached from the church, either coming from Piazza Barberini or the Pincio Garden. The Trinità dei Monti is a beautiful baroque-style church built mainly in the 16th century and designed by Carlo Maderno. It's a great stop to take a break from the Roman sun and look at the painting (search for the "Assumption" by da Voltera, in which this pupil of Michelangelo painted his master in the scene). The square and steps were built later by architect Francesco de Sanctis between 1723 and 1725. In front of the church, you will notice many street vendors selling anything: painting, jewelry, food and drinks, postcards... Admire the view from the balustrade and take in the steps... you'll realize how crowded it is.
Now, avoid walking on people's hand or feet when going down. It used to be a place for artists and models to be picked up and well... it's still a place to be picked up and to see and be seen Just give in, buy a gelato, and enjoy!
At the end of the staircase is Fontana della Barcaccia, the Little Boat Fountain. It is not known which one of the Berninis (Pietro, the father, or Gianlorenzo, the more famous son) created the fountain (maybe they both worked on it). You'll often find lots of people there cooling off. The water is drinkable and it's a good idea to refill.
Resource for Tourists:
American Express has its office here.
Although I don't recommend eating there (come on, you're in Rome), check out the interior of the McDonald's. They established themselves in an old palazzo, causing the ire of the Romans.
Have a tea at Babington's or Caffe del Greco (on swanky via Condotti... check out the autograph by Buffalo Bill), where sophisticated British ladies and other rich foreigners were indulging during their mandatory pilgrimage to Rome.
From there, hit the designer shops of Via Condotti (if you have the wallet for it) or Via del Corso (more democratic), or reach the Trevi Foutain.
From journal La dolce vita a Roma.
San Francisco, California
January 2, 2003
Accessible either on a fine walking tour (as found in many popular guidebooks) or from the Spagna metro stop, the piazza is often crowded and vibrant by night.
Our visit included several groups of revelers singing, romantic couples kissing in the shadows, and groups of young people gathering to rehash their weekend entertainment.
By day, the area around the piazza is lined with some of Rome's most exclusive boutiques: Valentino, Gucci, and other too-expensive to mention stops.
Watch for pickpockets and other scam artists and enjoy a bit of La Dolce Vita!
From journal 3 days in Rome
November 19, 2002
We arrive at the Piazza di Spagna after a short but not very comfortable ride on the Rome subway. At the foot of the stairs, dozens of tourgroups are already gathered, although it is not yet 10.30 am. The stairs themselves are exactly like in the many photos we have seen, with the Trinita' dei Monti-church hovering over them. We take a couple of pics and begin to climb the stairs. Funnily enough, the look down is one I have never seen before on any picture.
Once we reach the church at the top of the stairs, we turn left on the road, and as crowded as it was at the foot of the steps, as quiet it is up here. We find ourselves suddenly almost alone. A few hundred meters further to the left, along the road, we discover a look out point with a grandiose view across Rome. In the distance shimmers the dome of the San Pietro church and the Vatican.
From journal Eternal Rome
Jarrow, Tyne & Wear, United Kingdom
September 17, 2002
From journal When In Rome...
by Mary Louisa
April 1, 2002
From journal Four Days in Rome
February 26, 2002
This was not just a tourist type place. We saw groups of people clustered on the steps visiting, high school age kids gathered together and heading over to the McDonalds, individuals with briefcases sitting in the sun, tons of photographers, just all types and ages of people. That's all there is to do at the Spanish Steps. Be there and maybe get into a few photographs.
In front of the steps there is a fountain of a ship of some sort, with water sprouting from the ship. People were drinking from these fountains, but I didn't. We had mixed messages from different people if the water was safe to drink. Some people said yes, others no, so I opted to stay on the safe side.
Sitting on the steps and facing the fountain, two things caught my attention. First Condotti street was so crowded with people. I didn't remember it being that full when walking down that street to the Spanish Steps. Maybe I was overwhelmed with the posh stores (and grateful that my wife did not want to shop in any of them!) to have noticed all the people. Second, the billboard looked out of place. There was a huge billboard, without a current advertisement, just there, blocking the view.
Various artists had spots at the top of the stairs, selling their paintings so we looked at their work before climbing all the way to the top. We wanted to Ttinita dei Monti church. The view from the entrance of this church is just beautiful.
From the Spanish Steps, we walked down some of the side streets, those parallel to Condotti. These shops still carried expensive merchandise, but not quite as costly. We purchased gifts for our girls in this shopping area.
Shopping here was a fun experience. Most of the shops did not have tons of merchandise out on display. We looked at the sampling of items that were on display and asked for different sizes, colors, etc. People at the shops were congenial and helped us in every way possible. When we made purchases, the salesperson made us feel very important. The item was carefully wrapped in tissue (with the store's logo) and placed in a nice store bag (not flimsy plastic!). The bag was sealed with a store label. The process was done with full pomp and circumstance, making each purchase memorable. Our tourist status was evident, but we appreciated the attention and memorable experience.
From journal Pope John Paul II
July 19, 2001
From journal ROME
May 22, 2001
There is a great little neighborhood near the Church of Trinita. In the evening there are vendors selling lots of food items such as fresh fruit, roasted nuts and drinks. Artists set up all around the Church and at the base of the steps to sell their work.
The Spanish Steps is a a beautiful sight, and if you like to look at pretty men, too, you will really appreciate the view.
From journal Rome