Rome Journals

Visiting Italy: Roma

Best of IgoUgo

A November 2012 trip to Rome by tvordj

Sistine Chapel Photo, Rome, Italy More Photos
Quote: We spent 5 days in Rome in November 2012 under spectactularly blue skies!

Where we stayed

Bailey's Hotel

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Great boutique hotel in Rome"

Bailey's Hotel Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We stayed five nights at the Bailey's Hotel. It's about a 10-15 minute walk from the Termini or a short cab ride around the back of the Baths of Diocletian on a narrow street parallell to XX Settembre. That's handy for the busses and there are two Metro stops within about 15 minutes walk as well.The staff at the hotel were top notch, very helpful and friendly. Any request was quickly attended to and they had lots of suggestions for restaurants and things to do and how to get there on the map they gave us.We had a superior double room and it was on the top floor facing in inner courtyard. The room was very quiet as a result but the street itself wasn't really busy with traffic....Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 14, 2012

Bailey's Hotel
Via Flavia 39
Rome, Italy 00187
+39 (06) 642020486

What we did

Arriving in Rome

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Piazza Barberini and Via Veneto Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We left Manchester very early and security queues were long and bothersome. I found myself in the middle seat both times which was Bad Thing #1 but then, The man sitting next to me and his wife across the aisle were moved to where they could sit together so at least we could spread out and it was a bit more comfy. We got into Rome about 2:30 and trekked our way through the airport to where the train station is. I'm sure I saw a sign that said there was a regional train alternative to the more expensive express but the machines didn't show it nor did the rather rude man at the ticket counter admit it either. I'm not entirely confident but it seemed we didn't have a choice and spent the 32 e...Read More

Oh the Horror!

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Story/Tip

Colosseum  Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
I don't know about footloose but we certainly are foot sore! We "did" the Colosseum today, Nov. 7, and seemed to involve ourselves in more walking than necessary. I don't know what it is but we either get off a bus at the wrong spot or have to walk extra to find our destination. This morning we headed to find the bus stop. It had a stop for every number except the one we wanted, naturally, though we saw the bus we wanted go by a few times. We waqlked up the road. Surely we'd come across the stop eventually. "Eventually" was the accurate word. It probably wasn't far in the grand scheme of things but it was farther than we thought we'd have to go. Once on the crowded bus, our noses pressed u...Read More

Oh wait, it *is* another country

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Sistine Chapel Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
Today (Nov. 9) is a gruelling 3 hour tour in the Vatican museums. We slept in this morning and didn't get moving until mid-morning. We walked to a Metro to take it to the Vatican where we are later to meet the tour group. We skipped breakfast and had an early lunch to fortify ourselves for the long tour through the museums and St. Peter's.We were early for the tour meeting spot in Piazza di Risorgimento and decided to have gelato and sit in the sunny square. The gelato was beautifully creamy and the sun was warm. The square is just outside the walls of the Vatican City which is a state/country of its own. If we had been visiting anywhere in it beside the museums and basilica, w...Read More

Arrivederci, Roma

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

St Peter's Dome Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
A couple of notes:"Prego" is a word you will hear a lot. It seems to be a multi purpose word. You may hear someone behind a ticket desk or the hotel desk use it to summon the next person waiting. You could hear it used as a "your welcome" if you say thank you or grazie. It is almost always the word used to answer the telephone as well. Quite handy to know!Of course there are homeless people in Rome, just like anywhere else. There are people begging on the streets but we didn't notice anyone sleeping in doorways and even most of the main piazzas where the tourists are seemed free of beggars but we did see them. Some had disabilities and were unable to walk. They were perched or ...Read More

Sightseeing

Pantheon

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Perfectly proportioned Pantheon"

Pantheon Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
The Pantheon is one of the oldest Christian churches in Rome and was a pagan temple before that. It's still a church now and has been since the 7th century. It's one of the best preserved buildings from ancient Rome as well. It was built as a temple in early C.E. It was rebuilt after a fire, burned down and rebuilt again by Emperor Hadrian in the 2nd century C.E. The dimensions of it are beautifully perfect, as high in the middle as the diameter of the dome. Though the interior has been redesigned over time, the marble floors still date from ancient Rome. The church itself is circular as well with a portico outside lined with columns.There are a few famous tombs there. The big...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2012

Pantheon
Piazza della Rotonda
Rome, Italy 00186
+39 0668300230

Vatican Museums

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "*That* Chapel"

Vatican Museums Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
Vatican City is an independent state, therefore, it's a different country. You're not in Italy anymore when you cross the borders but you can visit St. Peter's Square, Basilica and the Vatican Museums easily. If you go anywhere else, though, you will have to go through passport and border control. The official State is less than 100 years old, established in 1929 but the Catholic Popes have been in residence here mostly since the early centuries of Christianity thought it's not the only place in Rome where they lived. There was also a period where the Popes lived in Avignon, France. The museums are a series of museums that exist to contain the collections of the Popes. They were founded by...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2012

Vatican Museums
Viale Vaticano
Rome, Italy 00165
0039 06 69884676

The Colosseum/Coliseum

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Thumbs up for the Colosseum"

The Colosseum/Coliseum Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
The Colosseum is an amphitheatre and was started in 72 C.E. It was completed and opened in 80 C.E. under Emperor Titus. It was used for public spectacles and festivals and gladiator competitions but was probably not used to set the early Christians against the lions as is popularly thought. It is believed that it's name was taken from a statue of Nero erected nearby which in turn was modeled after the Colossus of Rhodes. It was covered in marble and was painted but after the fall of Rome, the stone was pinched over the centuries to be used to build other things in the city. The Colosseum was generally opened to the public for 3 or 4 times a year, but for weeks each time as the spectacles ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2012

The Colosseum/Coliseum
Piazza Del Colosseo
Rome, Italy 00184
+39 (06) 7004261

Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini/Capuchin Crypt

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Old Bones"

Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini/Capuchin Crypt Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
The Church of Santa Maria della Concezione is an unusual one. In the crypt, which is above ground level (though perhaps at one time it wasn't) has several little chapels. They are decorated. With patterns made of bones. Real bones. the bones over 4000 Cappuchin monks. Really. There is a sign in the crypt that says "What you are, we once were. What we are, you someday will be." This is to remind us that life is fleeting. The bones are arranged on the walls and ceilings in elaborate patterns. Skulls are stacked up around the skeletons of other monks wrapped in brown robes. Even the hanging light fixtures are made of brown aged bones. It's truly bizarre, somewhat unsettling and yet beautiful...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 23, 2012

Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini/Capuchin Crypt
Via Vittorio Veneto 27
Rome, Italy

Storia e Magia

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Movies and magic"

Storia e Magia Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We came upon this store by accident, walking along Via Ottaviano towards the Vatican. We saw a figure of a knight in armour on the sidewalk (pavement) and went closer. Inside a small courtyard was another figure of a wizard by a sign that said "Storia e Magia" and we saw that there was a shop in there. When we went in we discovered it was chock full of beautiful and wondrous things. Not only are there lovely gift items but a lot of the shop contains items related to famous fantasy movies and series like Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter etc. And this isn't cheap tat either. You can buy full sized swords as seen in these movies, you can buy a replica of Gandalf's wooden staff. You can ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 23, 2012

Storia e Magia
Via Ottaviano, 32
Rome, Italy
06 3974 5528

Food

Enoteca Capranica

Restaurant | "Tasty food at an Italian wine bar"

Enoteca Capranica Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We came across this little wine bar while wandering the cobbled streets looking for the Pantheon. It's just off Piazza Montecitorio, near the Piazza Colonna which is on Via del Corso. It apparently has a long history of providing good wines from an excellent wine cellar. The restaurant is deep and narrow and has a long bar. The walls are lined with shelves filled with wine bottles. Lots of wood and high arched ceilings. The atmosphere is very nice. We stopped in there for lunch and had a lovely Roman meal. It was a leisurely lunch as is traditional in Italian restaurants. We had Italian beer, and I had a plate of pasta carbonara, my favourite. My partner managed to find a plate of chicken ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 20, 2012

Enoteca Capranica
Piazza Capranica, 99
Rome, Italy 00186
+39 0669940992

Pasticceria Strabbioni

Restaurant | "Historic Pasticceria and cafe "

Pasticceria Strabbioni Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
Pastticceria Strabbioni has been in existence since 1888 and is a neighbourhood establishment that serves up light lunches, coffee and awesome pastries and cakes. The interior is lined with wood and hand painted flowers on the ceiling. There's a coffee bar to the right and a showcase with hard-to-resist cakes and pastries on the left. There's also outside seating area for nice days.

We only stopped in to take out coffee and a cake to our hotel which was right around the corner. The coffee was a bit strong for us but perhaps we should have ordered lattes, I guess. The cakes are wonderful!

Panini €3-5. Pastries €0.80-3. Cash only. ~Open M-Sa 7am-8pm.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on December 2, 2012

Pasticceria Strabbioni
Via Servio Tullio, 2/a, 00187
Rome, Italy

Taverna Flavia

Restaurant | "Italian Taverna on Via Flavia"

Taverna Flavia Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
This restaurant was down the street from our hotel and most nights we were too tired from walking to go too far. We tried this Taverna on our third night in Rome and were not disappointed. The restaurant is far larger inside than it looks from the outside. The walls are covered with photos of famous people along with the owner who was there this night as well, keeping an eye on things. I don't think I liked the decor as much, though, it didn't give you a cozy feeling to the restaurant. No matter...The waiter we had was pretty good though we did have some translation problems once or twice but nothing too serious. That's not his fault. The food was very good, though more expensive than any ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 20, 2012

Taverna Flavia
Via Flavia, 9/11
Rome, Italy 00187
+39 064870483

Gelaterias

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Blue Ice Gelato, Rome Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
Italy is famed for it's gelato. We might call it "ice cream" but it's so much more than that. It's richer and creamier without being heavier. The flavours are more intense and most of the gelateria make theirs by hand, churning goodness into every lick of it! We were in Rome for 5 days though only managed to get to two places. We did have some for dessert at one or two restaurants but it doesn't quite seem the same as sitting in a square by a beautiful fountain in the sun or as the sun is going down, with a cone or a cup of gelato in your hand. You may pay more in the hot tourist areas such as Piazza Navona or Rotunda but even then, it doesn't matter because it's all part of the Rome exper...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 23, 2012

Tavernella di Luisa

Restaurant | "Neighbourhood Tavernella near the Vatican"

Tavernella di Luisa Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We were en route to do some shopping on Cola di Rienzo and were looking for somewhere for lunch. We saw this little taverna on the street and they had a set price lunch feature that looked ok so we went in. When you enter, you are in a narrow room with close set tables and there's another small room around the back. The cafe is unpretentious and rather plain but quite often those are the best kind. We sat at a table by the wall and though it was nearly empty when we arrived, it was completely full when we left, most of the clientele were locals, not tourists.The set price menu for lunch was only 10 euro and included a starter of bruschetta, an entre of Pizza and dessert with bottled water ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on December 2, 2012

Tavernella di Luisa
Via Ezio, 5,
Rome, Italy 192
06 3220007

La Locanda di Bacco

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant | "Great food and wine, great portions"

La Locanda di Bacco Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We stayed at Baileys Hotel on Via Flavia in Rome and the staff there said there were a couple of good restaurants just down the street. This one was one of 2 or 3 in a row but we liked the look of the menu the best. The restaurant is not that large, but the walls are lined with bottles of wine and apparently has an excellent wine cellar. The tables are immaculately set and though the tables are close together, you never felt crowded. The restaurant is in one room though on two levels. We were snug in a corner one night and loved the food so much we went back again before we left Rome and sat in the middle of the room that time.The portions we were served were generous and the food was real...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 20, 2012

La Locanda di Bacco
Via Flavia, 32
Rome, Italy
06 87440105

Hard Rock Cafe

Restaurant | "Hard Rockin' Rome"

Hard Rock Cafe Photo, Rome, Italy
Quote:
We decided to eat at the Hard Rock Cafe in Rome one evening. The Hard Rock cafes are fairly standard world wide. It's an American food menu and drinks with lots of music memorabilia decorating the walls. The food is plentiful and good and the wait staff is usually pretty upbeat. The HRC Rome has a nice feature, a painted ceiling in the main bar/restaurant area. The music is prominent but not quite too loud to carry on a conversation. We had a shared starter, southwest style spring rolls and they were quite tasty. I chose from something healthy and had salmon while my partner had a burger and we were both really happy with the results. It was all cooked to perfection. Our server...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 14, 2012

Hard Rock Cafe
Via Vittorio Veneto 62 A/B
Rome, Italy
3 (906) 420-3051

About the Writer

tvordj

tvordj
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia