Rome Journals

Twelve Rainy Days near Rome

A December 2009 trip to Rome by NiceGinna

An overview of the Forum Photo, Rome, Italy More Photos
Quote: Europe has had a cold, rainy winter this year so we weren't surprised to find damp weather on our home exchange over New Year's in Fregene, a beach resort outside Rome. But we managed to have a good time and see some great sights.

Bar Jolly Di Belloni

Restaurant | "Wonderful Food en Route to Rome"

Bar Jolly Di Belloni Photo, Lerici, Italy
Quote:
We headed out from Nice, en route to our home exchange in Fregene, Italy, just outside Rome, and stopped en route at this lovely seaside town. Lerici itself would be a fine stop if you are looking for a seaside village. We stopped at the Jolly Bar and had a delicious meal: pasta stuffed with zucca (squash) and served simply with a butter/sage sauce with lots of fresh parmesan cheese on top. This is a low-key neighborhood place, nothing fancy, but, as one expects in Italy, wonderful food.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 1, 2010

Bar Jolly Di Belloni
Via Roma, 56
Lerici, Italy
0187 967470

Fregene

Attraction | "Resort Town, Not Far from Rome"

Fregene Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
Now, most people going to Rome are not looking for a seaside village. But we had the opportunity to do a "home exchange" for 12 days over New Year's and jumped at it. We stayed in a small but charming villa, a few blocks from the sea. The town itself is nice, with good shops and restaurants, especially those along the sea. Part of the main street is edged by the beautiful pine forest planted at the direction of Pope Clement IX in the 1600's; the forest runs for more than 2 miles and has bike and walking paths. There are many large and elegant villas which are holiday homes for the rich Romans who love to come here in the summer months.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on February 1, 2010

Fregene
Fregene Beach life
Rome, Italy

Paestum Archaeological Site

Attraction | "The Greek Temples at Paestum Are Spectacular"

Paestum Archaeological Site Photo, Paestum, Italy
Quote:
These are our very favorite Greek Temples. We'd visited the site 15 years ago and, while we were near Rome, we decided that we would take two days and go see them again. It would be difficult, but not impossible, to do the trip in a day from Rome. But why not take a couple of days and also visit the Amalfi Coast and Pompeii?These temples had been buried beneath a river and were only discovered in the 1700's when a road was being built. The Greeks settled here around 600 BC; the area became Roman in 273 BC and the Greek Temples are surrounded by the remains of the Roman village.The Museum has a terrific display of artefacts recovered here. But it's the Temples themselves t...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 1, 2010

Paestum Archaeological Site
Via Magna Grecia
Paestum, Campania, Italy

Il Vecchio Salus

Restaurant | "A Terrific Restaurant that's Really out of the Way"

Il Vecchio Salus Photo, Anguillara Sabazia, Italy
Quote:
Our home-exchange hosts had recommended a drive around Lake Bracciano, north of Rome. It's a lovely drive and we stopped in the town of Anguillara Sabazia and found this restaurant where we had such a terrific meal and good time. It's not a fancy place at all, with wooden tables and many locals eating here. But the locals are a good sign that the food will be good too. There really wasn't a menu - the waitress named a few things and we recognized a few things that she said and ordered from them. David had the pasta vongole - pasta with clam sauce, which was spicy and wonderful. I first ordered a pasta too, but then saw an appetizer plate of local meats go by and pointed to that and changed my or...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 10, 2010

Il Vecchio Salus
Piazza dei bastioni,k 2
Anguillara Sabazia, Italy
+39 06 968290

Banditaccia Necropolis

Attraction | "Fascinating Etruscan Tombs"

Banditaccia Necropolis Photo, Cerveteri, Italy
Quote:
The Etruscans populated this area as early as the 9th century BC. They had ports on the sea and traded with Syria, the Phoenicians, Greece, Egypt. The necropolis, obviously, is their burial ground and we were expecting a few tumuli (earth mounds) but it goes on for over a mile! The rounded tombs rest on a stone base, often with decorative moldings, and the burial chambers are underneath, complete with stone beds. The tombs themselves are laid out like their homes, with chambers for storing things that they will need in the afterlife.The town of Ceveteri was called Caere in those times and was one of the principal cities of the Etruscan confederation. Around 400 BC they were important ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 1, 2010

Banditaccia Necropolis

Cerveteri, Italy

The Spanish Steps and Piazza di Spagna Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We'd been to Rome many times but our friends were on their first visit so we suggested taking a "free" walking tour from the Spanish Steps to the Colliseum. These tours have no basic fee; you pay at the end what you think it is worth, perhaps 5-10 euros per person. The tours last approximately 1 1/2 hours. There are three tours - an evening one mostly centered around Piazza Navona, one that goes to St. Peter's, and the one we took which I mentioned above. It stops at the Forum for an overview and outside the Colliseum. Obviously, you will want to return to both of these for a more in-depth visit, but this gives you a first glimpse and orients you to the city. Well worth it. Our friends took bo...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 10, 2010

Trattoria Monti

Restaurant | "A Recommended Restaurant Disappoints"

Trattoria Monti Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We'd read and heard a lot about this restaurant and were eager to try it. The first time we did, it was closed for the holiday season, with a sign that they would reopen on Jan. 6. So we made sure to go on the 8th, when we were next in Rome. It was not worth waiting for. It's a small place with a very pleasant atmosphere. But everything seemed to be deep fried. A friend ordered a first course of vegetables and was disappointed to find the artichokes in a heavy batter and deep fried. Several of the recommendations I'd read raved about their appetizer flans so I ordered one of radicchio and another diner ordered the parmesan flan; both were so rich, almost cloying, that we couldn't finish them. ...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on February 10, 2010

Trattoria Monti
Via San Vito, 13/A
Rome, Italy
39 06-446-6573

Ristorante Agostino al Campanaccio

Restaurant | "Excellent Restaurant on a Country Drive"

Ristorante Agostino al Campanaccio Photo, Morlupo, Italy
Quote:
We were driving in the country north of Rome, seeing tiny perched villages with castles, Roman ruins, and beautiful scenery. In Morlupo, we stopped in the main square and ate at this restaurant. It's a bit off-putting because it is right next to the gas station on the square, but it is worth overlooking that situation. Inside it is decorated with copper pans and old utensils; the ceiling is held by wooden beams. It certainly isn't a tourist spot: this is genuine Italian country fare, with friendly service and comfortable white linens. David ordered, as a starter, pasta with sausage and peas while I had the braesola plate with bitter greens and parmesan. Both delicious. Then David had the branz...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 10, 2010

Ristorante Agostino al Campanaccio
Piazza Armando Diaz 13
Morlupo, Italy

Hotel Hassler

Hotel | "Elegance: A Drink at the Hassler Bar"

Hotel Hassler Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
The Hassler Hotel is a landmark in Rome; it is situated right at the top of the Spanish Steps. I'm sure, if you can afford it, it is an elegant place to stay. We can't afford it, but one thing we like to do is pick out the fanciest hotel in the city we are visiting and go for a drink. We were having a birthday celebration for a friend and so went for a glass of Prosecco, the Italian version of champagne. Lovely.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 1, 2010

Hotel Hassler
6 PIAZZA TRINITA DEI MONTI
Rome, Italy
39-06-699-340