Tag-Archive for » Rome travel «

Annual Events in Rome

“New Year’s Day

Following the previous evening’s revelry, children’s activity unfolds on New Year’s Day in the Piazza del Popola, with clowns and other performers on stilts, papier-mache masks, fire-eaters, and more. Call +914 669 5378 or more information.

Underground Market

Unfolding in a subterranean parking lot near the Via Sistina, this monthly antiques market caters to collectors. Call +39 0636 004399 for more information.

Roman Purim

This Roman Jewish holiday, the Mo’ed di Piombo, stems from 1793 AD (5553 in the Hebrew calendar). Rome’s Jewish Temple is illuminated at night as the rabbi explains the meaning underscoring the celebration. Call +39 0636 004399 for more information.

February

Rome Independent Film Festival

As Rome’s foremost cinema event, the Independent Film Festival showcases more than 40 artists from some 25 countries. Screenings are in theaters at Cinema Pasquino, Cinema Roma and the Ripa Hotel. Call 0039 0636 004399 for more information.

March

Eurochocolate

During Eurochocolate week everything revolves around the seductive sweet stuff with some 500 participating stands, a Chocobookshop, a Chocofarm and a chocolate-flavored film competition. For added flair, the famed Trinita dei Monti staircase gets plastered with 3,000 pure chocolate eggs. Call + 39 06 36 00 4399 for more information.

April

Rome’s Good Friday Procession

On Good Friday, a torchlit procession moves from the Via Crucis, from the Colosseum and up the Monte Palatino, re-enacting the 14 station of the cross from the death of Jesus to placement of his body in the tomb. Call +39 06 3600 4 399 for more information.

Monthly Bargain Market

La Soffitta Sotto I Portici is a monthly bargain market taking place on the third Sunday with collectibles, memorabilia and more up for grabs. Call +39 06 3600 4399 for more information.

May

May Day Musical

On May 1, Rome celebrates spring’s arrival with a world-class music festival in Piazza San Giovanni. Call +39 06 3600 4399 for more information.

Spring Antiques Market

The Grande Mercato di Primavera (Great Spring Market) offers memorabilia for all tastes. Call +39 06 3600 4399 for more information.

Tennis Masters Series

Great tennis arrives in Rome with the Masters Series where 120 players compete for the top prizes. Call +39 06 3600 4399 for more information.

Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure

This breast cancer awareness fund-raiser involves a mini-marathon at the Stadio delle Terme di Caracalla.

Things To Do On Holiday In Italy

Italy is a very popular family holiday destination for families staying in self catering apartments and holiday villas. It is also popular with couples on romantic short city breaks. They can choose to stay in a holiday cottage or a luxurious holiday villa with a swimming pool.

Rome is now one of the most popular cities in Europe. While here you can choose to stay in one of the many holiday apartments or luxury villas available to rent direct from the holiday home owner in the capital. The prime attraction of Rome is the Colosseum. Emperor Vespasiano built this in 80 A.D. and gladiator fights were performed here. This is a huge monumental structure.

The Vatican City has many hot spots like St. Peter’s square, St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican Gardens, the Sistine chapel and the Vatican museums. Another popular tourist spot is Fontana di Trevi. There is a belief that if a person throws a coin into the water here, the person would return to Rome at least once again.

Tuscany is an enticing tourist destination and one of the most popular in the world. Tuscany is home to Siena, Lucca, Pisa and Florence. Here, you will find the great works of Renaissance architects, sculptors and painters. Some examples are Filippo Brunelleschi, Michelangelo Buonarroti and Leonardo da Vinci. The Cathedral of Pisa has a bell tower called as the Tower of Pisa. You will find the visit here is physically challenging. There are more than three hundred steps that wind up a narrow staircase. Tourists come from all over the world to visit here; they stay in self catering apartments or holiday villas that they rent from the home owner.

In Tuscany, you can enjoy horse riding from Centro Ippicol Agrifoglio. The horses are extremely obedient, soft and gentle and the inspiring countryside can be seen along with a relaxing ride. At the Circolo Golf Ugolino, a round of golf can be played.

St. Mark’s square is located in the midst of Venice. Families on vacation rental a luxury villa with a swimming pool or a holiday apartment and use this as a base to explore the local sites and culture. There are many museums here. Basilica is a church that has golden mosaics. Also, there is a 10th century altarpiece. Doge’s Palace has a museum inside it. Close to the basilica, there is a Porta della Carta. From the palace, there are pleasant views of the island San Giorgio Maggiore.

Towards the east is the Ponte della Paglia. From this spot, you can see the Bridge of Sighs which proves very popular with tourists. Towards the north of St. Mark’s square, there is a Rialto bridge. While walking from St. Mark’s square to this bridge, you will find many shops selling sweets, handbags, and designer clothing and glass souvenirs. Another major attraction for families staying in self catering apartments or villas is Aberoni golf course, it is the most popular.

Tourist can also enjoy fun filled recreational activities such as sailing in San Giorgio del Maggiore Island, swimming can be done down on the beach, in-line skating at the rink in Castello, tennis and rowing in Canottieri Bucintoro.

Best vacation destinations – Part 1

What is better than relaxing in the beautiful Mediterranean in the best possible weather and seeing some of the greatest relics of times past? I’m not quite sure. How about a vacation to exotic places like Rome, Tuscany, Florence, Athens, and Santorini? This may sound like a fantasy, but I’ll be headed to all these places this spring. Yes, lucky me.

Warm days that aren’t sweltering, at a time when tourists will be few and far between sounds so inviting I want to pack my bags immediately. On my vacation, I will be there about two weeks, submerging myself in the culture and oh, the food! I will eat everything in sight, considering I am basically going for the food and the atmosphere. Italian accents are wonderful. I’m currently learning Italian but to be surrounded by the language and the people will be awesome. Highlights like seeing the Colosseum or the fashionable city of Milan are as enticing as the Tuscan cuisine.

On the other hand, Greece is so incredibly picturesque! That deep blue water, and the stark white buildings are captivating. You know how you always see the same few buildings in pictures or on calendars and it seems like Greece is made up of the same three houses, and single blue gate? I can’t wait to stand next to that very blue gate or gaze out at the boats lined up by the dock. Who could not fall in love with the view?

I will probably stand out like a sore thumb, but I have wanted to go to both Italy and Greece for a number of years. I cannot wait to plan this and travel for two weeks. My camera will probably break from all the pictures I will take there.

These are all expectations but when you begin planning a trip like this how can you refrain from letting yourself dream?

I just felt like sharing what, in my opinion, is the best vacation destination ever.

Rome If You Want To – A Traveler’s Guide To Rome

Rome is one of the most beautiful areas in the world. The very cradle of human civilization, its many landmarks are a joy for the eyes to behold. The Eternal City remains unrivaled when it comes to the sheer aesthetic supremacy of its antique structures and its impressive, widely-venerated history. It doesnt come as a surprise then that Rome has claimed the #2 spot on the top travel destinations in the world.

1. Rome

With a climate mild and rainy in winter rather than full of snow, many find Rome the perfect place to vacation during any time of year. You do not need a Visa if youre only staying for 90 days or less. Experts recommend visiting Rome in the off-peak months between October and March to avoid the summer rush. If you can, try to book a hotel near or within the centro storico or historic district.

2. Take The Tour

Be sure to make a list of locations you intend to visit within Rome beforehand to save you time and money. Private tours are a great way to get around and at the same time soak up the local culture. Another great way to economize is by taking the TramBus system, that goes around the city and provides a fascinating tour of Romes neighborhoods.

3. Don’t Miss These Locations

The Coliseum is probably, next to the Vatican, the best structure to visit in the city. You can tour the premises on your own or join those conducted every hour by guides dressed as Gladiators. Operating hours vary throughout the year, so you will want to call in advance if at all possible.

4. The Roman Forum

Check out the civic center of Ancient Rome where political, religious, and economic activities took place. Many of its columns remain standing among the ruins even after 2000 years, displaying the intricacies of Roman architecture. Admission is free, opens at 9 am and closes an hour before sunset. If you want, you can spend a little more to get a personalized guided tour complete with audio pedestals where you can learn more.

5. The Vatican

One of the most popular spots to visit in Rome is, of course, the Vatican. In addition to its religious importance, the Vatican has a fine collection of sculptures, paintings, books, and many other artifacts that chronicle the Catholic Churchs history. You can view St. Peters Basilica, marvel at Michelangelos Pieta, its detailed masonry, or the papal catacombs. Move on to the Vatican Museum where even more magnificent antiquities are housed, not the least of that are Egyptian mummies from B.C. era.

6. The Sistine Chapel

If pressed for time, skip everything else and proceed to the Sistine Chapel. Michelangelo, primarily, was known as an excellent sculptor so when Pope Julius II commissioned him to paint the Bible on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, he thought it was a ploy by his rivals who thought Michelangelo, not being a full-on painter, would yield mediocrity and eMBArrass himself. Of course, we all know it didnt quite turn out that way. In fact, the Sistine Chapel is probably the most recognized piece of work from the Renaissance period.

Tips for visiting Rome – Part 9

We arrived in Rome at a time of great celebration and high spirits. It was the evening when the Italian team returned to the city, to hold up the shiny, coveted World Cup on an open top double decker, waving at streets lined with revelers. This joyful occasion set the tone for our visit to the Italian capital, as we enthusiastically joined in with the million spectators at the Ancient Circus Maximus.

Over the next six days, we aimed to see all the top tourist sites, and immerse ourselves in the culture and history of Rome. We found that most of these were accessible on foot, and within a fifteen – twenty minute walk of our Via Veneto based hotel. Later, when the July heat finally sapped up our early enthusiasm, we discovered the Metro, which is a very convenient method of travel. It only costs one euro for an hour’s travel, and is easy to navigate around. We used this for areas which were further afield, such as the Vatican.

Of all the amazing sights which we packed into our six day city break, some of my favourites included the Trevi fountain, the Colosseum and the Sistine Chapel.

Wonderful, ornate fountains are dotted across the city, and the Trevi is to me the most magnificent of all. This monumental fountain was completed in 1762, and the area around it is now bustling with tourists, throwing in coins, or admiring the ‘sea-horse’ sculptures ascending from the water. On the day we visited, we had to fight the temptation of jumping into the giant pool surrounding it, to cool off from the blistering thirty five degree, mid day sun heat!

When visiting the colosseum, it is advisable to take a tour with one of the many tour guides standing at the front of this ancient gladiator arena. It was worth paying to find out the history of such a building, and imagine the atmosphere that once infused the white marble interior, as Caesars and slaves cheered in unison, whilst wild animals were released from the cellars below. It is also worthwhile to view the colosseum in the evening, when it is lit up, and stands out in the backdrop of the Roman Forum.

The Sistine chapel can be found at the end of a long tour down the many corridors of the Vatican museum. The museum itself is decorated with mosaics, sculptures, tapestries and paintings in every corner. There are so many, that at times it is hard to take everything in. The Sistine chapel, which is the last part of the museum, is covered in paintings by Michaelangelo, which are worth studying in detail. We bought headphone sets from the reception at the Vatican museum, which will tell you detailed information about each exhibit, and are much cheaper than an actual tour guide. As we looked at each painting in the Sistine chapel, a vivid description of each painting, from the Last Judgement to the Old and New Testament scenes depicted on the ceiling, could be listened to on the headset. One detail to remember however, is that flash photography is not permitted due to the effects of fading the paintings.

These are just some of the main attractions we enjoyed when visiting this historic city. We hope you fall in love with Rome as much as we did.

Italy Vacation Rentals

Italy is a country of remarkable beauty and breathtaking architecture that should be viewed by every visitor to this rich and diverse country. No matter which part you plan to visit, you are bound to find a wealth of attractions that take you on a historical journey and call out to you with their detail and beauty. Make your way to the Italian region of your choice for your next vacation and enjoy all the fine comforts of home when you stay in a conveniently located vacation rental.

There are vacation rentals located throughout the country that have all the amenities of home while surrounding you with the very best Italian scenery this country has to offer. Whether you are planning on spending the duration of your trip in Florence or heading over to the capital of Rome after a few days, you don’t have to give up a moment of luxury when you stay in a house, villa, or apartment that provides the most breathtaking views of Italy that you could ever imagine.

Florence is a city of stunning architecture as the enormous white, green, and pink marble Duomo on top of the Cathedral of Santa Maria dei Fiori punctuates the skyline. For those who want to soak in the wondrous beauty of Florence’s architecture, consider staying in an apartment rental that has remarkable views of the magnificent dome of Brunelleschi, the grandiose bell tower of Giotto, and the gorgeous frescos of Vasari while providing all the modern comforts of home. From the balcony, you can soak in the Florence skyline and feel as if you can reach out and touch the marble façade of the Duomo.

If you plan on heading to Naples or the Amalfi Coast, the very best accommodations will take advantage of the stunning Bay of Naples so you can enjoy this glorious expanse of water. There are numerous house and apartment rentals perched atop the bay, allowing you to relax on balconies while soaking in the one-of-a-kind views and forgetting all of the stresses you have left behind. Sip your fresh espresso or simply breathe in the fresh air before heading down to explore the shops and churches that populate the Spaccanapoli.

Countryside homes are available throughout Italy and are a great option for anyone who wants to experience the slow-paced, charming way of life of those who prefer to stay away from the bustling city centers. Enjoy the lush rolling hills of the Italian countryside while overlooking all the action that lies below your perch without having to deal with the noise and commotion. Surrounded by a vibrant garden and a private swimming pool, you can experience Italy at your own pace by making your way into the city at your own leisure.

For those who want a luxurious retreat away where they can unwind after a busy day of viewing art galleries and strolling the busy Italian squares, there are fine accommodations in many of the popular regions that take you back to another world. Take advantage of the two level terrace that is surrounded by fine architectural details while enjoying a comfortable lunch, or relax inside on the massive lounge couches. For those times when you simply want to kick back and rest your feet after a long day of walking around, open up the glass roof and gaze up the clear skies as you slowly re-energize your body for an exciting evening.

Italy is a country of many pleasures and delights that allows visitors to live and breathe its historical significance by simply strolling its stunning streets. Stay as close to the many museums, art galleries, and attractions as you desire with Italy vacation rentals that are located throughout the country. Whether you prefer rolling hills with expansive views or a city center location that puts you in the middle of all the architecture and worthwhile sights, everything you love about Italy can be at your fingertips when you stay in a vacation rental that meets all your needs and exceeds all your expectations.

Forget Paris, Discover The Romance Of Rome

Rome is considered by many to be the heart of Europe. This city was once the centre of the greatest empire the world has ever seen. Even today, remnants of that greatness are everywhere in Rome, with some of the most breathtaking art and architecture you will ever see. Rome was the home of the greatest artists and sculptors and even if you may have seen these pieces in books, there is nothing like seeing it for yourself up close and personal.

The biggest attraction in Rome is the Coliseum. This colossal structure still baffled engineers today as to how it was built using what we still think was primitive methods. However, the Roman Empire was centuries ahead of its time in terms of building structures, dams and canals which irrigated the fertile lands surrounding the capital.

Many organized tours start from the Coliseum and wind their way through the city, stopping at every breathtaking cathedral and museum. Rome is a city of immense culture and historical significance, so if you are at all interested in art and culture then Rome is one place you have to go.

On the other side of the spectrum, Rome is a modern city alive with dynamism and a great vibe. Rome is home to some of the best bars and nightclubs so if this is what you are looking for then you will not be disappointed. If you are looking for a place to stay, then look for a place within the main parts of the city. You will not struggle to find something to do just by stepping out of your hotel.

If hotel life is not what you are after then there are plenty of self-catering apartments and holiday rentals available. Hotel package tours will allow you to see most of Rome within a solid structure. This is a good way of ticking off all the places you will discuss at dinner parties. Holiday rentals will give you more freedom to explore on your own terms and you will more than likely stumble upon a few places that ordinarily you would not have been able to find.

Rome rarely experiences terrible weather but the best time for a visit is in summer. This, however, is the most expensive time to travel so booking in the milder off season may be better. The weather is still great and the city is not as full of bustling tourists. If you book early you should be able to get a place in the better hotels or in a self-catering apartment.

If you want to try something different, then you should try Rome. Hire a Vespa and head out to the countryside or flit around the narrow streets. Rome is a place that begs for adventure.

The Ancient Modern Rome

Most people choose summer for their holiday adventures. But when it comes to Rome, a winter trip, when the city rests from its clammy, exhausting heat, is even more advisable. Sightseeing is calm and leisurely, and an evening in one of local cafes, like Tazza d’Oro by the Pantheon, is even more pleasant.

Having read a couple of guides on Rome you might feel a bit confused: the Colosseum, the Pantheon, Saint Peter’s Square… Experienced travelers say that excursions around main attractions, when you see them one by one in the order they are mentioned in travel guides, are useless. Leisurely idle walks – that is the best way to make friends with Rome.

First thing a tourist is advised to do in Rome is to get the city map and find the nearest stop for trams 3 and 8, which go around the city demonstrating a great amount of attractions. They will of course take you to the Colosseum. It might sometimes be difficult to get inside, but after your visit you can go further to Via dei Fori Imperiali – a road rich in archaeological and historic attractions: the ancient market, Forum of Trajan, Basilica Ulpia etc. Various events often take place here.

You are then free to go anywhere you want – Rome is rich in churches, fountains, squares, museums, cosy streets and shops. On your way from the Pantheon to Piazza Navona (by the way, the famous Fountain of the four Rivers is located here) you will encounter a modern house standing on piles right above the ancient ruins. This is what true Rome is – full understanding between the ancient history and modern life.

Squares are almost at every turn in Rome. The best known of them, like Piazza di Spagna, Campo de’ Fiori, Piazza Venezia and Piazza Navona, are always crowded with people. However, there are also spots that are rarely mentioned in standard guides. Piazza Mincio in the Quartiere Coppede is one of those – fountain, arches and art-nouveau roofs are definitely worth seeing.

A historic district concentrated around Campo de’ Fiori also deserves one’s attention. The place is full of narrow lanes, endless stores selling various goods, small shops selling vintage clothes standing side by side with Renaissance palaces and ancient ruins. Another district (or “rione” like they call them here) pleasant to walk around is the bohemian Trastevere, which greatly differs from other Roman districts. Time runs more slowly, and colours are unlike anywhere else in the city. Trastevere has some churches (basilica di Santa Maria in Trastevere, Santa Cecilia in Trastevere) and museums (Museo di Roma). The district is rich in cafes and restaurants serving wine and food. Trastevere still keeps its historic traditions.

As for spiritual traditions, one place that will remind you of those is the Vatican City. However, to enter it you will have to join a guided tour. And don’t forget to observe Rome from the Janiculum Hill and Piazzale Garibaldi. An unmounted trip is the best way to get there – on your way you will see some beautiful houses and fountains. On the hilltop there is a green park. One of the most important local landmarks is the monument to Giuseppe Garibaldi

For the romantic persons I would recommend seeing the sunset from Circo Massimo (Circus Maximus), when the sun throws rays of light on the opposite Palatine.

Touring the Shorelines From Civitavecchia to Rome!

There are many ways on how you can enjoy and even get to Rome. The shore excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome prove to be one of them. In fact, it has become one of the most important ports, as it invites more and more passengers every year.

The shore excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome will usually start at the northern and farther portion of Rome. It is basically at least 1.5 hour’s drive from the capital. However, because of the comprehensive transport system, with wide highways and fast trains, it’s not going to be a very long wait for you. It also intersects the road leading to the Fiumincino, a Roman airport.

If you’re going for the shore excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome, then you better start packing all your essentials the night before. This is because cruise ships will usually dock so early in the morning, and buses that will take you to shore excursions will not wait for you for too long.

Going through by Train

Besides shore excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome, you can also travel to Rome by train. There are different schedules that you can take, and it will only take less than 2 hours from the central station called Roma Termini before you can reach the metropolis. If you can catch up with more modern and faster trains, you can even cut the number of hours in half. The train station of Civitavecchia can be located near the port’s entrance, but you may have to still walk a distance as the unloading terminal is somewhat far.

Is Shore Excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome Right for You?

There are certain factors that you may have to consider before you can actually decide that shore excursions is the right way to enjoy the various historical locations of this ancient Roman city. Normally, tours are very much suitable to all types of passengers. You don’t have to walk very long distances, and there are only few stairs to climb on. This is extremely ideal for old people, who may already be suffering from joint and leg pains. Shore excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome are also friendly to people with wheelchairs, though it may be advisable to have someone who can guide them as they have to walk few steps. After all, there are only limited wheelchair lifts on shore trips.

If you’re not sure whether shore excursions from Civitavecchia to Rome is fitting for you, you can always ask for more information from the travel agency. They will surely be happy to provide you of any data that you need. You can also spot if the tour is family oriented or good for children by simply looking out for the family-friendly icon or logo. It can be in their websites or in their brochures. Children aged 11 and below usually have lower price fees than teens and adults.

Civitavecchia-Rome Shore Excursion Tours

Shore excursions tours are the best way to experience and appreciate the Eternal City in a limited time. They can include private transportation from the ship to any destination.

A cruise towards Rome requires you to be as comfortable as you can. You can’t just allow yourself to be bothered by your poorly fitted garments. Moreover, make sure that you put on your most comfortable and durable walking shoes, sun hats, a bottle of water, and enthusiasm—and your leisurely trip will be truly perfect.

Rome Through the Eyes of an Expert

As a Rome airport shuttle driver, passengers often seek my advice on what the best places are to visit in the city. Because I have lived here for the past 14 years, I feel I have a good handle on which sights will delight and which will disappoint. It’s always gratifying to collect the same people on the return leg of their Rome airport transfer, and see if my recommendations were what they were looking for.

So far, these seem to be the top picks from my Rome airport transfer passengers:

The Vatican

You can’t be a Rome airport shuttle driver without hearing about the Vatican. The general consensus is that you must visit whether you’re Catholic or not – but be prepared to queue. You’ll want to bring your own water and be prepared to wait for a long while. Once inside, the Vatican museums will overwhelm with the sheer quantity of amazing artefacts and art works, and the whole place has an atmosphere unique unto itself. Most of my passengers seem to have coped fine without a tour guide, and there’s so much to see that they like being able to wander around at their own pace.

The Pantheon

The Pantheon is another highlight which gets almost universal praise from my passengers – possibly in no small part to the fact that it’s free! It’s stunningly preserved and regarded as one of the best places to go on the rare occasion that the skies open and it begins raining, because of the breathtaking sight of the water pouring in through the oculus. Once again, and probably more so thanks to the attractive price – it is prone to getting extremely crowded, though.

Trevi Fountain

Possibly the most photographed fountain in the world, I have been able to pick up quite a few tips from the passengers in my Rome airport shuttles. As per usual, it gets extremely crowded at certain hours. In fact, it’s best to visit between 6:30 and 9:30 in the morning or very late at night. Although this is far from convenient, you won’t have to deal with the crowds, and you can be sure that the experience won’t be a let down (some have struggled to see the beauty of it through the crowds when visiting at peak hours.) If you do insist on visiting at peak times, you should avoid the local restaurants which are both overpriced and disappointing – they seem to know that most people will visit only once, and subsequently feel there is no need to rely on repeat custom.

The Colusseum

There’s no more iconic image in the whole of Rome than that of The Colusseum, and my passengers are universal in their praise for this amazing structure. Key things to note are that it is far more impressive in person than pictures can ever indicate, and that it is one of those attractions that really benefits from a guided tour – and not just because those taking the tour can beat the queues!

Borghese Gallery

The Galleria Borghese is one of the underrated gems of Rome, and one which my passengers keep offering rave reviews of. Within its walls are some of the finest sculptures you are likely to see, but make sure you book in advance as it can get a little crowded. Also make sure you take the tour or get an audioguide as only the title and not the history of each piece is provided.

Capitoline Museum

The Museo Capitolino is another must-see for art lovers, containing works from the Renaissance and Baroque periods from artists such as Rubens, Rembrandt, Vermeer and Caravaggio. The labels are in English, so feel free to skip on the audioguides here – but watch out for the overzealous attendants who will not be afraid of shouting at you if you get too close to the sculptures!

Jewish Ghetto

When Pope Paul restricted the Jews to a small area of the city back in 1555, this ghetto was born. As it contains an incredible amount of history, taking a tour or stroll around this area is an absolute must, and many of my Rome airport shuttle customers have commented that it’s the highlight of their trip!

Sure, you can trust the guidebooks or the tour operators, but if you want the real truth on the city, I’d argue you can do far worse than asking the Rome airport shuttle driver!