We are ashamed to admit, but although in Rome we were already …… we do not even know how many times, we have not written a word about it yet. Maybe because we treat the Eternal City as our second home (well, currently it’s probably the third, because we live in Malta 🙂 ), to which we regularly return at least once a year and the city has no secrets for us. We return because we love Rome, because we love the local stone streets, sitting at the top of the Spanish Steps drinking wine and looking down at the crowds of tourists, eating pizza in our favorite place, drink coffee and eat cornetto with white chocolate, spend evenings with our Italian friends , walk, walk, walk. Yes, every trip to Rome is for us a journey between the streets and historical buildings, which you have plenty of here.
It’s been exactly 6 years since Karolina got a day-to-day proposal for a trip for a “Double Degree” program at one of the universities there. So we found it as a great opportunity to take a little bit of Italian life, southern optimism and the sun. When, in the end, Karolina packed up and left, she left for a few months to the Eternal City, in which we have already been, but it was only this trip that made us keep coming back. This is one of those moments when we’ve learned that yes, we want to travel, moreover, we want to travel as much as possible and use every moment to get away, somewhere further. And from that time on, tradition has developed that we come back here at least once a year. Because we just love Rome!
WHAT WE LOVE ROME FOR?
- For Pantheon – our favorite place in the Eternal City. An architectural masterpiece, it is difficult for us today to understand how, so many centuries ago, the technique allowed people to build something so perfect (125 BC). In addition, the square on which this place is located is always full of street musicians, a tiny square with a mass of charming cafes, from where you feel the aroma of coffee for a kilometer. The Pantheon’s enormity on this small square, surrounded by centuries-old tenement houses – this place cannot be replaced. Note – From this year (2018) tickets for the Pantheon were introduced at a symbolic price of 1 euro, which can be bought at nearby kiosks.
- For the Colosseum – you can admire the hours, and at any time of the day or night it looks completely different. The same applies to each side of the Colosseum – the view is different on each side. However, we like to climb the stairs above the metro station of the same name, sit on the wall and look down on this architectural colossus. In the evening, come here and drink wine when you do not find crowds anymore, and the hour is quiet. And you stay alone – you and the giant from centuries ago. Try to come here after midnight – unique.
- For Trastevere – narrow streets bathed in sunlight, old tenement houses covered with ivy, music sounds, wine, aroma of pasta. In the evenings, a meeting place for the young. There is no more Italian place than Trastevere. And hence only a few steps to … it’s the next point, because it deserves it…
- For Gianicolo – viewpoint and park, which is easy to reach from Trastevere. An amazing view of the entire Rome. From here you can see virtually every monument. On the one hand, Piazza Venezia, Pantheon, on the other hand, the St Peter’s Basilica. A great park, where you will find a respite on a hot day, have a coffee and enjoy the panorama of Rome. Approaching can be difficult, but it is really worth it!
- For Piazza Navona – a square full of artists. Today, it may be a bit commercial, but it still has something in it. Lots of painters come here with their works, beautiful fountains and church. But the most important here are those paintings covered with the sun. It’s the most beautiful here in the morning 🙂
- For the greenery of the local parks – Villa Borghese, Villa Pamphili – in big cities there are no places for a bit of bush, nature, greenery? This is the best example of how you can find your green oasis in the middle of the big city noise, take a boat through the lake, stretch out on a blanket in full sun under the trees, arrange a picnic with friends, ride a bike where nobody will be trumpeting you. You can finally forget that you are in the city center.
- For the view from the top of the Spanish Steps – yes, one of the most touristic places in Rome, but we always climb to the top with a bottle of wine, sit on the wall, dropping our legs down and stare down at Piazza di Spagna, looking at crowds of people from all over the world, on Via Condotti in front of us, a place with the most expensive and the most luxurious shops, the Carabinieri proudly sitting on their horses. And our faces are covered with sun, you pull out the book, you drink wine – we love this place.
- For the Dome in the St Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican itself – no matter how or whether you are a believer, the Vatican is a place where you will never pass by. You feel like a tiny sparkle lost among the monumental, huge walls of the Basilica. And the view from the dome is unearthly, in addition to going up to the top, you look at the dome and the murals that cover them up close – unique. The entry to the dome is very pleasant, you do not feel the amount of stairs you are going through. It costs 7 euros, which are really worth spending. However, to enter the Basilica, especially in summer, prepare for waiting in a queue – hence it is better to come early before the sun is too much to give a hint of. Let’s remember about the appropriate dress – covered knees, arms – this is a church.
- For the Bridge with Angels next to the St Angel’s Castle and Tiber- looks beautiful at any time of the day or night, but in our opinion it is the most beautiful at sunset. Angels look like a fairy tale. It is also worth taking a seat at twilight by the Tiber, perceptive and patient eye will see otters walking in the grass near the shore.
- For the tiny church of Santa Maria della Concezione at Piazza Barberini – a few steps from Piazza Barberini you will find a church that is not like a typical church. It is worth a look because of the burial crypt made of the bones of the Capuchin brothers – a dark place, though breathtaking. Free admission. Unfortunately, pictures cannot be made inside.
- For our favorite pizza at L’Archetto – we go to Rome, so every day we eat a pizza in our tiny pizzeria on via Germanico 105. Yes, the homeland of pizza is Naples and there we have our favorite place, but the pizza at L’Archetto is heaven in the mouth, the same employees for years, the same hunched grandfather making a pizza for several decades according to the same recipe. No, we will not change this place for anything else. It is not without reason that after several months spent in Rome, when Karolina ate here every day, she returned plus a few kilos. 🙂 It is worth to sin! We especially recommend Capricciosa, Quattro Formaggi and Salsiccia. Heaven! Plus wine, for dessert tiramisu and espresso, a few kilos guaranteed, but everyone who visits there once, will come back and will always come back! Note – During the weekend in the evening, whole Italian families are eating here, so you have to wait for a table more than once. But be patient, it’s worth it!
- For the Roman keyhole – yes, it sounds funny, but there is one keyhole in Rome, which cannot be omitted 🙂 Aventine is not the most visited part of the city, and it is here through the keyhole of the monastery of the Order of the Knights of Malta you can see the dome of the St Peter’s Basilica surrounded by the monastery gardens. The place is located a few steps from Circo Massimo, on the way we pass the church with a beautiful garden full of orange trees, from where there is also a beautiful view of the Vatican. Until we come to an inconspicuous dark green door, at which, if at all, you will meet only a few people – the place is not as popular as the Colosseum or the Trevi Fountain, the better for you! The hole in Italian is called il Buco della Serratura and believe us, you will not regret coming here! We will not show pictures of the view from the buttonhole, because there is no chance with the phone, and even though we have a good camera, none of the photos came out. But the view will remain in your memory for a long time 🙂
- For Trevi Fountain at 4am – yes, you read well, at 4am is wonderful. Why? Because there is no living soul there. However, during the day it’s hard to get there between the crowd. Everyone wants to have a picture with a fountain, everyone wants to throw a coin into it, so that, according to tradition, they can still come back here. Remember! Standing back to the fountain with his right hand over the left arm! Only then works! The picture at 4am was only one and not the first quality, because at this time we were there a few years ago, when the phones did not take pictures like today. But if you just had the opportunity to come back to the hotel after midnight, it is worth hooking up, a unique view and always remembered.
- For Piazza Venezia and the Roman Forum – although visiting through the crowds, we love the walk from the Colosseum, passing the centuries-old ruins of the Roman Forum and reaching the monumental Piazza Venezia, from where there is an unearthly view of the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. We are surrounded by white gulls, the wind is blowing your hair, and you are contemplating the history that surrounds you.
- For the fact that we always have someone who is waiting for us here! 🙂 Baci Marco, Francesco, Daniele! It is difficult to count how much since Karolina lived in Rome we visited each other – we in Rome, they in Poland. And we can never get enough of ourselves, time is always too short. For the mass of memories associated with them and with Rome, moments full of smile and sun that we will never forget.
And we could talk about Rome for hours, because Rome has a lot of places that we love and we always come back to. 🙂 And although we managed to be there twice in a few months, in March we go for a few moments to breathe the Roman air, take a deep breath and empathize in the centuries-old atmosphere of this city. Because there is nothing more beautiful than to have a place where you feel happy, where your face enjoys the thought that your foot will be there again, that you will sit on top of the Spanish Steps, close your eyes, feeling the sun on your cheeks, listen the city sounds, open the wine and breathe again, because you know that you are here again, in your beloved place, full of memories, friends, wonderful experiences. You are here for a moment, but you do not even have to throw a coin into the Di Trevi Fountain, after all you will come back here soon. Because it’s your second home. And Rome is our second home. And it will never change again.