Roma, Bella Roma – Part II

Barbara Klein Roma 16 Comments

When in Rome do as the Romans Do.

I wonder if a native of Rome has ever taken an official tour of Rome?

We do and this is our official tour day, the concierge books a tour with a company called Ciao Roma for us (€ 26.00 per person).

Ciao Roma

The tickets are conveniently valid for 24 hours, you can hop off and on anywhere at any time. Traffic is heavy and I welcome any opportunity to get away from the fumes and the teeth rattling vibrations of the bus’ engine.

We walk to the stop Circo Massimo and have ample time to watch the dog walkers and joggers from above. Imagine that 2’000 years ago they had quite other spectacles here!

Circo Massimo

Circo Massimo with the Forum Romanum in the background

Piazza San Pietro

Piazza St. Pietro where …


… where the cobble stones are not cobble stones but pietrini (named after the saint or is it the diminutive of the Italian word pietra = stone?)

polizia moderna

… Where the polizia drive an electrical squad car

We do not want to wait for three hours to have a glimpse at the St. Peter’s Basilica or the Sistine Chapel, it would be a good idea for a next visit to buy a time slot ticket (i.e. direct entry).

On with the tour past the Castel S. Angelo, past the fascinating Ara Pacis Museum built by Richard Meier along the river Tiber, Piazza Navona, Piazza Risorgimento and uphill towards Villa Borghese where we get off to walk to the Spanish Steps:

Spanish Steps

I am far more impressed with the famous Hotel Hasler top right

We eat lunch at the very small restaurant La Lupa in “the heart of Rome”, Via della Lupa 6, off the beaten tracks and ideal for recharging our batteries. We have antipasti (fried vegetables and bruschette) and primo piatti (pasta).

Thus fortified we continue our bus tour (via Via Veneto, Quirinale, Piazza Venezia), up a hill and down another, I must have been a little bit tired or overwhelmed by all the sensations: sorry, no more pictures. Plus it is rather difficult to take pictures from a moving bus.

Very impressive statue of Vittorio Emanuele II (the feather on his hat measures 1.90 m, his sword 5 m and there is space for 22 people in his horse’s belly) at the Tomb for the Unknown Soldier.

We finish our tour with the Colosseum (where according to our guide no Christians were ever sacrificed), the Forum Romanum and get off at the Circo Massimo. A leisurely walk through the Rose Park takes us back to our hotel for a Spanish type siesta.

Comments 16

  1. Ah Barbara, you make me lonesome for Europe! It was this time 2 years ago that I was preparing for my trip to Greece where I fell in love with all the history there! It sounds like you have an amazing time! Thanks for the tip about the time slot ticket. I’ll be checking with you when I plan my trip to Rome! 🙂

    1.  @Lori Lori, you plan a trip to Europe and I will give you a hand, just to make sure I can lure you to Basel as well (maybe?) or join you somewhere!
      Actually, I am sitting in cold and grey Switzerland, dreaming about Rome where the weather was far nicer, part III is in the making and I will include some links to restaurants.
      Have a great week, Barbara

  2. The best way to see Rome is via walking! Every time I’ve been there we seem to just leave where we are staying and walk from morning to evening…there are sights to see at every turn.

  3. OK, it’s official.  I now want to go to Rome! What a delightful article and the photos were a fantastic way for us to feel like we were following you along.  Really enjoyed it!

    1.  @MarthaGiffen Splendid decision, Martha. Thanks for stopping by and stay tuned for part III with some tips for restaurants, most of which our friend Fabrizio has supplied, he knows everything!
      I am glad you enjoyed it – thanks a lot!  

    1.  @GenevieveLachance Thanks, Genevieve, I have added a list of restaurants (from Fabrizio and Daniele) and some travelling tips to part III of my Roma trip, this will hopefully help you in realising your bucket list item! 

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