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  1. #1
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    When in Rome...for a short period

    My mother & I are going to Rome this month from Wed 19 (landing at 3 pm) to Fri 21 (taking off at 10:35 am), we'll be flying in and out of Ciampino airport.

    Does anyone have any recommendations?

    We only have one full day in Rome but we don't want to rush and try to see everything without enjoying it. I have two things on my must-see list right now : the Colosseum and the Trevi Fountain. We love to walk/shop. We are not Catholic and are not really interested in the Vatican or museums.

    We booked a B&B (A casa di Getta). Is the neighbourhood safe at night? We plan to stay out in the center and take the last buses/tram to go back to the hotel.

    Right now, this is our schedule :

    Wed 19
    15:00 : take a cab to our hotel instead of Terravision or Atral bus to save time. Fixed price of 30 euros from Ciampino.
    16:30 : buy bus tickets at a local shop (should we get day passes or is it not worth it?)
    17:00 : go to Piazza Di Spagna & Trevi fountain at night. Do some window shopping (I want to go to Tiffany's). Have dinner/gelato.

    Thru 20

    08:00 : breakfast, bus to termini then colosseum*
    09:00-10:30 : wait in the queue, visit of the colosseum
    10:30-11:45 : walk & visit of the Roman forum
    11:45-12:05 : walk to the Capitoline Hill
    12:05-12:40 : I'm torn between going to Vittorio Emmanuel II for the view or straight to the Pantheon
    12:40-13:40 : probably lunch wherever we are
    Afternoon : Trévi fountain during the day, Piazza del Popolo, Piazza Navona just walking downtown and shopping** at Via Del Corso and maybe Cola Di Rienzo.
    Then dinner either in the center or near our hotel.

    Fri 21 :
    8:00-8:30 : breakfast at the hotel/check-out
    8:30 : either taxi or bus from Termini to Ciampino


    *The Colosseum is open from 9:00 to 19:00 in September. Do you think we have enough time to see it on the first day (it must be gorgeous at night) or we shouln't bother and go first thing the next morning? on the website it's written : "Price of entry: € 9,00 + 3,00 for shown supplement (€ 4,50 + 3,00 for European Union citizens from 18 and 24 age)". What is the "shown supplement". I'm 21 so it's going to cost me 7,5€ and 12€ for my mother right?

    **Any advice on shopping? I like cosmetics (but there's already a Kiko in my town)

  2. #2
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    The only flaw I see is you need to geographically group your trip more geographically, or you'll waste a lot of time walking back and forth.

    Piazza Navona is near the Pantheon, and Piazza del Popolo is WAY north of the city center. Tiffany's is on Via Del Babuino between Popolo and the Spanish Steps. Your hotel isn't far from the red line metro, maybe take that over to the Popolo stop and work your way down to Trevi? There's a great gelato place next to the Trevi Fountain. You could also take the Metro down to the Colosseum.

    You can walk past Vittorio Emmanuel II on your way to the Pantheon, then over to Piazza Navona. Don't bother with the museum inside, it's boring. From the Forum, go out to Via dei Fori Imperiali, then you can walk around Vittorio Emmanuel on your way to Capitoline Hill.

    I was there in 2008, but we skipped a long-ass line at the Colosseum by buying tickets for some random tour. I'd recommend that if you can. It is STUNNING at night, but you don't need to go in at night. Plus it might not be dark enough at 1900. Do the tour during the day, then swing back around for photo op at night.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Libertango View Post
    My mother & I are going to Rome this month from Wed 19 (landing at 3 pm) to Fri 21 (taking off at 10:35 am), we'll be flying in and out of Ciampino airport.

    Does anyone have any recommendations?

    We only have one full day in Rome but we don't want to rush and try to see everything without enjoying it. I have two things on my must-see list right now : the Colosseum and the Trevi Fountain. We love to walk/shop. We are not Catholic and are not really interested in the Vatican or museums.

    We booked a B&B (A casa di Getta). Is the neighbourhood safe at night? We plan to stay out in the center and take the last buses/tram to go back to the hotel.

    Right now, this is our schedule :

    Wed 19
    15:00 : take a cab to our hotel instead of Terravision or Atral bus to save time. Fixed price of 30 euros from Ciampino.
    16:30 : buy bus tickets at a local shop (should we get day passes or is it not worth it?)
    17:00 : go to Piazza Di Spagna & Trevi fountain at night. Do some window shopping (I want to go to Tiffany's). Have dinner/gelato.

    Thru 20

    08:00 : breakfast, bus to termini then colosseum*
    09:00-10:30 : wait in the queue, visit of the colosseum
    10:30-11:45 : walk & visit of the Roman forum
    11:45-12:05 : walk to the Capitoline Hill
    12:05-12:40 : I'm torn between going to Vittorio Emmanuel II for the view or straight to the Pantheon
    12:40-13:40 : probably lunch wherever we are
    Afternoon : Trévi fountain during the day, Piazza del Popolo, Piazza Navona just walking downtown and shopping** at Via Del Corso and maybe Cola Di Rienzo.
    Then dinner either in the center or near our hotel.

    Fri 21 :
    8:00-8:30 : breakfast at the hotel/check-out
    8:30 : either taxi or bus from Termini to Ciampino


    *The Colosseum is open from 9:00 to 19:00 in September. Do you think we have enough time to see it on the first day (it must be gorgeous at night) or we shouln't bother and go first thing the next morning? on the website it's written : "Price of entry: € 9,00 + 3,00 for shown supplement (€ 4,50 + 3,00 for European Union citizens from 18 and 24 age)". What is the "shown supplement". I'm 21 so it's going to cost me 7,5€ and 12€ for my mother right?

    **Any advice on shopping? I like cosmetics (but there's already a Kiko in my town)
    Vittorio Emmanuel is better at night but don't eat there it's very expensive. When I went to Trevi Fountain it was closed for cleaning so we had to go back, it was very pretty and so clean! I felt very safe walking around from the train station to Vatican City and only took a taxi to the Borghese Gallery (it was too far to walk.) I knew a lot about the Colosseum but I went though with earphones so I could learn more, maybe that is what they mean by a supplement, I did pay more than Europeans, then even more for the headset.

    Aside from food and tickets, I didn't shop at all. I hope you enjoy your time.

    Lunch in front of the Pantheon was my favorite! I liked Nero's Golden House (near Colossum, I wish I would have skipped Spanish Steps and Piazza Navona)

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    I just love the Pantheon.
    I think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Libertango View Post
    **Any advice on shopping? I like cosmetics (but there's already a Kiko in my town)
    Given your limited time, I would suggest that you head for the high-end department store La Rinascente.

    I would also recommend that you buy the Time Out guidebook for Rome. Failing that, point your browser here: http://www.timeout.com/rome/search/?tag_id=4288.

  6. #6
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    The Colosseum and the Roman Forum are right next to each other. The Colosseum, you can do in about an hour, but the Roman Forum takes much longer to really walk through. Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps are very close, you can do both in about 1/2 hour. Be VERY careful in the piazza around the Trevi Fountain, a lot of "gypsies", beggars, pick pockets. Pantheon is not far from the Trevi Fountain. Pantheon is a MUST! The building is amazing, stand under the oculus and look up. Raphael is entombed there. Even if you don't go into the Vatican, you should walk around the piazza. I believe you can go into St. Peters without going through the entire Vatican. Castle Sant'Angelo is near the Vatican. Rome is not as walkable as other Italian cities, it is much, much larger (and I think confusing). Avoid the subways, they are not really safe.

    Most importantly, have fun and remember this - Vorei un bicchiere di vino rosso (red) or bianco (white), or due bicchiere di vino (I would like a glass of wine or two glasses of wine).

  7. #7
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    I'm not big on museums either, but the Vatican Museum was incredible. We took a three-hour tour, using Viator (a tour guide company). The Vatican has the largest collection of pagan art. So many things took our breaths away.

    Consider seeing the Vatican.

    And we took the subway and bus everywhere and we had no problems at all. Enjoy!
    With glowing hearts / Des plus brillants exploits.

  8. #8
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    Where's Tinami?? She has fab traveling advice.

  9. #9
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    I wasn't in Rome for long, but I never felt unsafe in the subway.

    For me the Forum was love at first sight: for some reason, it resonated with life and didn't just feel like a bunch of ancient buildings.
    "The team doesn't get automatic capacity because management is mad" -- Greg Smith, agile guy

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I wasn't in Rome for long, but I never felt unsafe in the subway.
    Second this. I actually felt more uncomfortable on the bus. We took one from Via Nazionale to the Vatican, and it was literally sardines in a tin. But I was never scared for my safety, nor did any thieving bands of children approach us or men leer at us (more like, we leered at them. Roman men are HAWT ). And we were VERY obviously tourists. I'm overweight (this sounds bad but I saw nothing but svelte women in the whole of Italy), we're both blondes speaking English with backpacks, cameras and shorts - from my experience, no Italian women would be caught dead in shorts in May.

    I never felt unsafe in Rome, despite lots of warnings, and my female friend and I stayed at a hostel in the city center on Via Palermo. I was never alone for very long, and we used common sense - don't go to unknown locations, don't stay out too late, don't get completely wasted, be polite and respectful, etc. If you're comfortable walking around in a big city (eyes forward, purposeful stride), you'll be fine. Tip the living statues.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    The Colosseum and the Roman Forum are right next to each other. The Colosseum, you can do in about an hour, but the Roman Forum takes much longer to really walk through. Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps are very close, you can do both in about 1/2 hour. Be VERY careful in the piazza around the Trevi Fountain, a lot of "gypsies", beggars, pick pockets. Pantheon is not far from the Trevi Fountain. Pantheon is a MUST! The building is amazing, stand under the oculus and look up. Raphael is entombed there. Even if you don't go into the Vatican, you should walk around the piazza. I believe you can go into St. Peters without going through the entire Vatican. Castle Sant'Angelo is near the Vatican. Rome is not as walkable as other Italian cities, it is much, much larger (and I think confusing). Avoid the subways, they are not really safe.
    I found Rome to be exceptionally walkable. The city center really isn't that large, so I'd skip the bus passes altogether and just buy single tickets, unless you do a hop-on-hop-off thing that takes you to all the tourist sights. We were staying quite close to the Termini and walked to Galleria Borghese and the Colosseum without difficulty (I do think we did those on separate days though).

    Pantheon is fantastic and not to be missed. I really enjoyed Forum Romanum as well. We skipped the Colosseum because of the lines.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by vesperholly View Post
    Second this. I actually felt more uncomfortable on the bus. We took one from Via Nazionale to the Vatican, and it was literally sardines in a tin. But I was never scared for my safety, nor did any thieving bands of children approach us or men leer at us (more like, we leered at them. Roman men are HAWT ). And we were VERY obviously tourists. I'm overweight (this sounds bad but I saw nothing but svelte women in the whole of Italy), we're both blondes speaking English with backpacks, cameras and shorts - from my experience, no Italian women would be caught dead in shorts in May.

    I never felt unsafe in Rome, despite lots of warnings, and my female friend and I stayed at a hostel in the city center on Via Palermo. I was never alone for very long, and we used common sense - don't go to unknown locations, don't stay out too late, don't get completely wasted, be polite and respectful, etc. If you're comfortable walking around in a big city (eyes forward, purposeful stride), you'll be fine. Tip the living statues.
    Thieving bands of children??
    A grumpy Canadian will always be nicer than a polite Milanese

  13. #13
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    Well, we took the Rome subway, once. My husband had a hand go into his pocket and I had a purse zipper half opened while he reacted. And they were not children.

  14. #14
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    I've heard about the buses in Rome, but never the metro.
    To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.

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    And I was once directly and overtly assaulted by a team of adult female pickpockets when I was walking near the Vatican. Do be careful.

  16. #16
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    Rome has become more dangerous in the last several years. I was there in 2004, that was when we had the subway incident. But, the streets didn't seem quite so congested with beggars, etc. When I was there 2 years ago, I was shocked to see how many were in the piazzas. It used to be that they would stay close to the buildings, but now they are all over, on blankets. Many of them with horrible physical disabilities. It is my understanding that they are being brought in to beg. These "pimps" believe that if the beggars look more tragic, that more people will give them money. The beggars don't get to keep much of what they get, the "pimps" take it from them. I mentioned this at the hotel, where we stayed, and they said that the problem has grown tremendously.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pingu View Post
    Thieving bands of children??
    My husband and I were mauled by two small children walking between the Colosseum and the Forum. Fortunately, we'd been warned by some other people in front of us so we had everything double zipped into my tote bag and we were ready. They started grabbing at us, but they didn't have any luck so they swarmed an Italian couple nearby. It got nasty really fast. They got the man's wallet, but I grabbed the little girl by the shoulders from behind and she lifted up her shirt to show she didn't have the wallet (and tried to bite me). She'd passed it to the other - my husband and one of the guys who had warned us grabbed her arms and she dropped it. I could see a police car pulling up so I was still holding onto the first girl, and I was pretty shocked when the man they tried to rob punched her in the nose. I let go (her nose was bleeding), they both wrenched away and ran off up the hill by the forum. The door of a van opened and an adult grabbed one by the hair and dragged her into the van. The other got in, and we could see the van was full of kids. They took off with the police after them.
    I think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by vesperholly View Post
    (more like, we leered at them. Roman men are HAWT ).
    Men-watching is one of the highlights of Rome: it's free, and it's everywhere.
    "The team doesn't get automatic capacity because management is mad" -- Greg Smith, agile guy

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob View Post
    My husband and I were mauled by two small children walking between the Colosseum and the Forum. Fortunately, we'd been warned by some other people in front of us so we had everything double zipped into my tote bag and we were ready. They started grabbing at us, but they didn't have any luck so they swarmed an Italian couple nearby. It got nasty really fast. They got the man's wallet, but I grabbed the little girl by the shoulders from behind and she lifted up her shirt to show she didn't have the wallet (and tried to bite me). She'd passed it to the other - my husband and one of the guys who had warned us grabbed her arms and she dropped it. I could see a police car pulling up so I was still holding onto the first girl, and I was pretty shocked when the man they tried to rob punched her in the nose. I let go (her nose was bleeding), they both wrenched away and ran off up the hill by the forum. The door of a van opened and an adult grabbed one by the hair and dragged her into the van. The other got in, and we could see the van was full of kids. They took off with the police after them.
    This has become more prevalent. As has the prostitution of young girls. It is really sad. These are not Italian kids, they are brought in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    This has become more prevalent. As has the prostitution of young girls. It is really sad. These are not Italian kids, they are brought in.
    It was very sad. I'm not sure she would have fared any better had I been able to hold her for the police, but when I saw them dragged into the van .. it was really awful to see something like that.
    I think I will have a snack and take a nap before I eat and go to sleep.

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