Monday, November 26, 2007

Rome

I have added photos of our trip to Rome in early November. It's fast becoming one of my favourite things to do, this going to a European city in November for a week. I had loads of things I wanted to say about Rome, but there's just too much of it. So, let me recommend a few things very briefly.

First, we stayed here. The lady who owns the apartment is a very friendly American lady, and the apartment is where she actually used to live, so it's got a proper "someone lives here" feel about it, rather than the more usual "it's too small to actually live in, so I'll rent it out to tourists" feel that you usually get. That said, it really only sleeps two people. However, the location is fantastic. We walked everywhere from here; the only time we got the bus was when we were going to the Villa Borghese. We also ate in a bunch of places that our apartment lady recommended, and they were all very good.

My favourite places to eat and drink were here, which does amazing fried artichokes with salt and pepper; here, where we ate fantastic pizza on a Saturday afternoon and watched trendy Roman people go about their well-dressed Saturday; La Scala, which is in Trastevere as well and does the most amazing orange risotto; and this cafe, which does the strangest sour/sticky sweet coffee you ever tasted, in a beautiful 1950s bar.

We also availed ourselves of a private three-hour walking tour, which can be booked by talking to the lady who runs the apartment and brought us to the Forum by a route we never would have thought of by ourselves and which helped us to make a lot more sense of the layout of the ancient city than we would have got by other means. So I would recommend that too, if you've much of an interest in the ancient times.

(I also really liked the dog park in the Villa Borghese, and the cat sanctuary among the temples in the Largo Argentino.)

It is exhausting, though, and really, really crowded. There are people everywhere, all the time, and there are always mopeds up your arse and cars trying to squeeze past you on the narrow streets, and there are no footpaths and everything's cobbled, which sounds lovely but means you have to watch your step. So if you're going, you need to build in some rest time during the day.

7 comments:

kvlol said...

The whole trip looks and sounds amazing. Again, I am racked with jealousy.

I loved the building for the Ara Pacis Augustae, the Altar(?) itself left me a bit cold I must admit. I actually went in thinking it was the new Modern Art Museum. How wrong I was. Are the architecture models still in the basement? They were class!

Where was Barberini Basilica? Vatican museums don't actually seem all that mental so yay etc. Was the apartment really that... not so modern... in reality? Location is brilliant though. Castel San'Angelo, one of the best cafes with a view in Rome of a winter evening.

God I'd love to be there now!

accentmonkey said...

The basilica we went to is on the Capitoline hill, next to the museum.

The Vatican museums were okay, actually. We had a whole ten minutes in the Sistine Chapel, and although there were a lot of people, it was actually perfectly comfortable.

The decor in the apartment had something of a late 70s/early 80s feel to it, but it had a great shower, high-speed Internet connection, and satellite television.

And, as you say, fantastic location.

I will go to the cafe in Castel Sant'Angelo next time.

Queenie said...

Only just got to look at your photos - great stuff. Really liked them. Much better views of Rome than I saw when I was there.

scattyme said...

It all looks great, though I know embarrassingly little about all the historic things that you took photos of. Makes me want to go to Italy. Mopeds are a real pain around here too.

Caroline

PS I have a blog now too! It's at http://scattyme.livejournal.com/ .

scattyme said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
scattyme said...

sorry, double post....

Colombo said...

Hey stranger,

Your trip sounds like it was fabulous! I've noted some of your recommendations for my next trip there.