April 24, 2014

Rome


Rome was certainly not built in a day and so a day is just not enough to see around. The city is way crowded. The traffic and the noise and pollution is a part of any other major cities. We got a B&B kind of place a few blocks away from the main train station. It wasn't good but it did serve our purpose at cheaper price than any hotel in the vicinity (but not that very cheap).

Colosseum: It is located bang smack in the middle of a busy road. It's right outside the Metro. But we took 2 buses from Vatican to reach here. Every bus that came by was full, we skipped a couple of those to see we may get lucky but people were swarming from nowhere. I hate standing so close and breathing onto someones face or have to smell a stranger in the bus. But sadly at times I had to. It was the busiest even though it was a weekend.

This where the brutality happened


Recommendations, Suggestions and Tips:
  • You can do pre-booking in order to save time. We had to spend a long time in the queue and each ticket has a time slot on it and they will take folks in only if your ticket has the time slot they are letting people in. if you are early or late, you will have to wait.
  • The place is again guarded so try not give any reason to them to doubt your behavior.
  • We did not book a guide, instead we just walked around the group of people who had appointed a guide and we were just listening to catch some important notes. Sorry, that was not our intention, but its inevitable when the guide is talking so loud and you are in close proximity.
  • Do take lot of water bottles. The time of the year and time of the day we had this planned out turned out super hot we all were getting quite dehydrated (often).
  • We enjoyed feeding the pigeons that were flying around the vicinity while we were waiting for our time slot.
  • We spent at least an hour and a half inside the colosseum and another hour and a half outside waiting for our turn because of our lack of due diligence in doing the pre-booking.

Carriage rides around the colosseum and probably a little around the city. It's a tad bit expensive.


A family pic



Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain: We went to see these places (specifically Trevi) twice. One at day time and one at dark when the fountain is illuminated. Both has its own charm. Getting off the metro we 1st went to see Spanish steps, then walked a bit farther to see the fountain. The alley which we had to walk through to get to the steps from the Metro was a bit shady, but we did not had any trouble. As you approach the spanish steps you will see how crowded the place is. I mean where did all these people come from? I am not sure if its that important to see these steps, but it was more of a been there done that thing. The Trevi fountain is even more crowded that sometimes its even hard to get a good picture. The place near Trevi fountain is very very humid. You will notice the juxtaposition of the modern stores settled over the very characteristic cobblestone walkway.

Spanish Steps at night time






Recommendations, Suggestions and Tips:
  • Visiting the fountain once during day time and once during night time has its own specific charm. So, I would highly recommend.
  • The place is filled with drunkards so you may find some inappropriate behavior so be vigilant. At the same time don't let you bother so much about it.
  • Kids love to play around the fountain that is in front of the Spanish steps and also go up and down the stairs.
  • Spanish steps is more family friendly spot I would think.
  • There is a horse carriage ride available near the Spanish steps, but they are way way too pricy. You can try to haggle but it was still not working for us. We just wanted to give our son an experience. The guys was charging us 50 Euro per person (which is like 150 Euro for 3) for a 30 min ride.
  • The good thing about these 2 spots were that they are *FREE* no entry fee or any sort.

Cobble stone walk from Spanish steps to Trevi fountain



It's only human to have and make a wish










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