Thursday, June 2, 2011

All Roads Lead to Rome - Rome, Italy

Three weeks before we head home, we finally arrive in Rome.

Where we will sleep

How long? 4 nights
How much? €28.90 per night plus a €1.50 booking fee (2 adults, 1 motorbike) 
Check in? 12 noon, but reception is 24 hours. We’ll arrive around 2pm after driving 3.5 hours from Sorrento.
Check out? Not specified. We’ll leave around 8am to get to Figline Valdarno by 2pm.
Why we chose it? Set up with a hostel so has organised activities, swimming pools and Jacuzzis open until 10pm, outdoor cinema, shuttle to the Vatican for 2 Euros return, 24 hour security, wifi, laundry.

The distance from camp to Rome, 29 minutes
What we want to see

We have only 3 full days in Rome, so we have a rough plan for each day

Sunday (the day we arrive)

Walk around the Colosseum, Roman Forum and the Pantheon. We can go inside the Pantheon for free and head back to the Colosseum and the Roman Forum the next day. Afterwards we can walk over to the Spanish Steps and see the Trevi Fountain.


Colosseum - €14.50 admission
Roman Forum - €0 admission
Palatine Hill - €0 (included with the Colosseum)
Piazza Navona – the city square


Vatican City, including St Peters Basilica (€0) and the Vatican Museums that house the Sistine Chapel (€15) as well as Circus Maximus. You can get an audio guide (€7) or you can book an official tour (€36) via the website. You can book a maximum of 3 months in advance. There is a strict dress code – shoulders and knees must be covered and if they’re not you have to buy disposable coveralls.
Museum Opening Hours – 9am-6pm Monday to Saturday


Wednesday is unplanned, but of course we have options!

Castel Sant’Angelo – The Hassassin’s secret lair in The Da Vinci Code.
Piazza Campo dei Fioro – a flower and vegetable market on each morning.
Trastevere neighbourhood – one of the most beautiful areas in Rome
Cappuchin Crypt under Santa Maria della Immacolata Concezione (€0) Open 9am-12pm and 3-6pm every day except Thursday.

Most shops will be closed for the peak of Summer, when all the shop owners go on holiday.

Rome is also the birthplace of Spaghetti alla Carbonara, my sister’s favourite food, so I have to hunt it down.

What we are expecting

I’m expecting Rome to be overwhelming. I’m expecting it to be very spread out too. In my head, all the major sights are near each other, but when I think about it logically, they can’t be. They’re huge! So I’m expecting it to completely surprise me. I know a few people who didn’t like it and I’ve heard you fall in love with Rome the second time you visit. I expect to love the individual sights and ruins but I don’t expect to love Rome itself.