In Italy a croissant is called a ‘Cornetto’ and is (in my opinion) the perfect way to start your day, the morning is also the only time of the day that you can order a cappuccino and not be judged as a tourist for it, after this it’s espresso only if you want to fit in! The Colosseum is first on the list this morning, right along with the Roman forums, it will take some time to cover all this history so leave yourself the whole morning and check out this post on how to skip the cues!
Trust me, after all of this you will be starving. A trip to L’Archetto (Via Dell’Archetto,26), just around the corner from the Trevi fountain, will solve this problem. Tucked down a side alley, this tiny restaurant has most of its seats on the cobble stone road and serves 100 different pasta sauces. Enjoy the constant flow of nuns letting themselves in to the neighboring convent as you eat.
You still have a bit of a walk ahead of you so reward yourself halfway with gelato at either Gelato del Teatro (Via dei Coronari, 65), serving exotic flavors such as red wine and dark chocolate or Gelateria della Palma (Via della Maddalena, 19-23. Right near the Pantheon) where 150 flavors of gelato are offered, you will be stuck for choice!
The walk up to St Peters Basilica itself is an experience, the huge dome looms and looms until suddenly you are crossing the line on the ground that marks that you are entering into another country and wow, you are in the Vatican. A tour in here will take about 3 hours and cost around 30- 40 Euro but I think it is the only way to do it. The inside is huge and if you don’t know what you are doing you may end up spending most of your time wandering lost trying to find things like the Sistine chapel. All of the tours should finish at St Peter’s Basilica and from there I would recommend to purchase a separate ticket to climb to the dome. I haven’t managed to do it yet but I hear the view is unrivaled.
An amble downhill will lead you to Trastevere, the less touristy, calmer, suburb of Rome. On the right hand banks of the Tiber it is full of boutique shops for clothing, perfume, jewelery, books and so many bars offering craft beers and bizarre cocktails. Settle in for a drink and watch the passers by.
Instead of dinner, why not do aperitivo? Aperitivo is a practice of some bars to provide snack food when you order a drink in the early evening. At Gusto (Piazza Augusto Imperatore, 9) they take this one step further and provide a buffet of finger foods and salads, which you can go back to as often as you like, with the purchase of just one drink (around 10-12 euro). It is more than enough for dinner, although I will tell you that the cocktails are so good, you wont be stopping at one. Sometimes they also have live music, its a very popular spot so I would recommend trying to get there before 7 for a seat.
Preferred method of transport – Foot (unfortunately the public transport options in this city are not so great)
What are your suggestions for a day in Rome? Is there something else you consider essential viewing? Let me know!