I just finished my travels to Rome and I’d thought to share my tips and advice on your next trip to Rome!
Trip Duration: 5 Days
– Water fountains in the city center are drinkable as the water have been filtered and is full of rich minerals. The fountains were lifesavers! I carried around 1 big bottle and refilled whenever I could. The water was always cold and tasted great.
– Purchase your tickets in advance in order to enter the popular museums like Vatican City, Colosseum. Have a hard copy of the voucher on the date of arrival.
– Bring an Italy guide book which gives all major museums and sites, great for walks around the city and the popular monuments.
– If you wish to have photo opts taken without a crowd of tourists in your photo background, I’d suggest arriving from 7am-9am and it is also cooler during this time
For the Colosseum: Highly suggest to purchase the printed version of the ticket prior as you will be able to skip 1 of 2 lines. The 1st line for those to purchase a ticket and the 2nd line to enter the Colosseum with the printed vouchers and tickets.
For Vatican City: Purchase the ticket prior on the official website: http://www.museivaticani.va/…/visita-…/scegli-la-visita.html arrival (20 euros) and bring a printed hardcopy. Go straight to the front entrance which you are skipping about a 2-3-hour line without a ticket. However, be aware that there are many “skip the line” ticket sellers that will try to sell you a guided tour and visit the Saint Peters Basilica for 20 euro as your museum ticket only includes the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel (a room full of artwork done by Michelangelo). After you finish the Sistine Chapel head to the right side where it said “guided tours only” you will enter and see the Saint Peters Basilica without having to wait another line. Saint Peters Basilica is free to enter. No need to have a guided tour during your visit at the Vatican City, as you can bring an Italy guide book!
If in the Vatican Museum you get the handheld audio guide, where they make you leave your passport DO NOT exit the Sistine Chapel on the right. You won’t get to the end of the museum where your passport is and you will be given a hard time getting back in
Accommodations: Stayed at the center of Downtown at Alessandro Hostel-however I would not recommend this hostel due to the cleanliness of the rooms and lobby. Plus, I overheard some guests had a case of bed bugs in their rooms. My advice is to stay near a metro station as all trains will lead to the center city.
Food: There are so many great places to eat and drink and eat again! However, if you choose to eat next to a monument or plaza be aware of the following: – Read the menu carefully and be aware if they have a service charge up to 20% on top of the bill – bread baskets on the table have an extra charge My scam story: One morning I headed out super early to take photos and I was super hungry and wanted something to eat FAST. I opted for a place near the colosseum as they had American breakfast photo but no price is written, I asked how much for this breakfast and they said 10 euros, so I sat down and had a beautiful breakfast and received coffee with no milk or cream so I asked for some cream for the coffee and they brought out steamed milk which is totally fine. When the bill came up, they wanted to charge me 16 euros for breakfast and then 5 euros for Cappuccino. I was super furious that I did not agree to pay 5 euros for some milk and an extra 6 euros for breakfast. Lesson learned always see the price written before you sit down. They charge you from every little thing they can, often without notice. Some places charge extra “service charges” just to sit down to eat the food you just ordered from them lol So beware. I found a sweet spot called Navona Notte with the sweetest owner and good food at decent prices
For gelato, I highly recommend Gelateria Della Palma. 150 awesome flavors, inexpensive, and right around the corner from the Pantheon.
Transportation: Public metro trains and busses tickets are valid one direction on the train and 90 minutes on busses. The cost is 1.50 euros. Google maps are great to use for offline maps and saved location tags. The center is super walkable from one monument to around, be prepared to bring good walking shoes.
Free things to do:
– Free walking tours offered with RomeWalkingTour.com they run daily tours meeting point at the Spanish Steps and the tour is about 2 hours long and ends at the Vatican City. (tip-based guided tours)
– Visiting the monuments from the outside are all free to see
– Churches- be mindful to cover your shoulders and knees
– Visit the many lookouts from sides of the city
– Meet some awesome locals to show you around
– Our first kinky shops tour was done in Rome 🙂 Now after few more cities we have done in this method I can tell that Rome is not the sexiest place for adult tourists