The eternal city where all roads lead, where you can live your whole life in one day-long vacation or get lost for several weeks. The concentration of attractions in Rome reaches such values that after only a couple of hours in this city, the heart and brain of a poor tourist begin to refuse to accommodate new ones. Therefore, spending a day or two in Rome is simply a crime. You can come and come and come here. The main thing is to be aware that Rome is not Italy. Consider that this is a separate state or even a separate world. Rome is monstrously old and forever young, having seen the rise and fall of one of the planet’s greatest civilizations. Not surprisingly, its entire historic center has been declared a World Heritage Site for Humanity.
How to get to Rome
According to polyhobbies, residents of Russia to Rome are mainly air roads, too many borders, customs points, mountain passes, rivers and seas separate us from the capital of Italy. But if you wish, you can travel by car, having figured out the intricacies of Italian routes and gas stations, go on a train trip, making several transfers in European capitals, arrive by sea from neighboring countries or cities of the same Italy, or set off on the road by bus, good this type of transportation in Europe is well developed, and there are flights from the capital to this direction.
Districts of Rome
Rome is divided into many zones, districts, municipalities, suburbs, districts, quarters and other residential areas. Undoubtedly, each of them has its own pearl, but it is difficult even for Romans in the seventh generation to understand all the intricacies of urban planning, therefore, for the first acquaintance, it is better to choose one of the historical districts, and leave the working outskirts for later.
The city welcomes its guests with the Termini area – along the main station of Rome of the same name. Many travel agencies recommend this place, talking about the cheapness of housing and the convenience of logistics, but in reality these advantages are very doubtful, and there are plenty of other disadvantages: the railway station areas are distinguished by increased noise, dirt, bustle, some criminal patina, Termini is no exception. And the imaginary transport accessibility – so it is almost ubiquitous in Rome.
West of Termini and north of Ostiense, there is a whole galaxy of ancient districts where you can’t go through without tripping over a landmark or resting your forehead on it: Monti, Campitelli, Celio and Ripa. Yes, these are crowded and very popular areas, the round dances of tourists around the Colosseum do not stop even at night. But if you try, you can find not the most expensive accommodation on a quiet street a stone’s throw from the Forum and enjoy the view of these majestic ruins in the early morning while everyone is sleeping. The number of not the most famous, but incredibly beautiful churches here just rolls over.
You can walk around the central part of Rome without fear, but it is better to avoid the “emigrant” quarters. The main danger for tourists is pickpockets, especially gypsies, on crowded streets and in public transport. Many stops even have special signs warning about pickpockets.
Another impressive group of districts is located just above the Colosseum: Trevi, Parione, Pigna and Regola. In addition to endless palazzos, temples and squares, this area is notable for its shops – small private shops, fashion boutiques, markets, and there are also many cozy cafes, bars and gelaterias. The main landmarks are Piazza Navona, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain and the Barberini metro station.
The north of the right-bank tourist center of Rome is occupied by the areas of Ponte, Colonna and Campo Marzio. The first one is recommended for lovers of hiking along the embankments and bridges – its coat of arms even depicts the Bridge of the Holy Angel, and the Vatican is within easy reach. The column and the Champ de Mars are good for both independent excursions and shopping.
Trastevere occupies a large area on the left bank of the Tiber. Ignoring this area is a real sacrilege. First, I crossed the bridge – and already in the center. Secondly, there are enough attractions here. And thirdly, this area is alive, the most ordinary Romans live here, they go to non-tourist shops and cheap trattorias for locals, trade in real, not souvenir markets, and do not dress up as legionnaires and gladiators. In Trastevere you will feel the rhythm of a modern society harmoniously existing within the walls of the medieval streets of an eternal monument. Minus – the local youth calms down only in the morning.
To the north – Borgo and the Vatican. The main difference from Trastevere: there are much more tourists and pilgrims, as well as scammers than natives, but if you go deep into the quarters, you will surely find a quiet and inexpensive place.
From areas far from the center with affordable housing and good conditions, Eur with its Palais des Congrès and the square Colosseum, as well as neat and green Monteverde, can be advised. In Testaccio, go for nightlife and a tour of small, family-run pizzerias.
The main place of concentration of hotels in Rome is around the main railway station, where Russian travel agencies are so fond of accommodating their clients. There are both nice establishments and hotels shocking in their size, where 3 sq. m manage to cram all the necessary attributes of hotel life: a bed, a wardrobe, a bedside table, etc. The cost for two per night fluctuates around 100 EUR.
There are no fewer hotels in the Campo de Fiori and Pantheon area. Paying 120-150 EUR per night, every day the tourist will admire the beautiful views of the domes and cathedrals of Baroque Rome. In addition, you can look for hotels near Plaza España.
Do not forget about the so-called apartments. They cost unlike less, about the same 120 EUR (but not for two, but for 3-4-5, etc. people), but instead of one room with a shower, a tourist will live in a spacious two- or three-room apartment with kitchen, hallway and full bathroom. As a bonus, the apartment comes with the feeling of being a full-fledged resident of Rome: greet your neighbors, buy milk at the nearest supermarket for breakfast and take out the garbage, boringly dividing it into glass or paper, for the sake of the environment.
In Rome, there is no concept of a low season, so in any case it is worth booking a hotel in advance.
Unpretentious travelers who are ready to explore this great city from dawn to dusk should consider accommodation in local hostels, mini-hotels and guesthouses. It is very economical, most often – benevolent and comfortable, and sometimes unusual. For example, you can abandon the usual youth backpacker places and book a room in a guest house at the monastery. Yes, you can’t fall here at night and tipsy, but such housing will certainly be quiet, calm and clean. The Internet may not be available, but will this worldly bustle compare with a week in a monastery near the walls of the Vatican? Issue price: 15-50 EUR.