We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Just Back From 5 Days in July

Which Rome hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
seattle
Level Contributor
204 posts
15 reviews
Save Topic
Just Back From 5 Days in July

We returned last night from 4 amazing nights in Rome (2 nights Belgrade, 4 Rome, 3 Positano).

With about 5 days in the middle of the hot tourist season, we didn't even try to see everything that interested us. We picked our can't miss of standards (Palatine, Forum, Colosseum, Vatican, Catacombs, Pantheon, Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, the Capitolini Museum) and saved room other important things like simple wandering, cafe-sitting and gelato-sampling. We had an awesome, un-stressed time.

Navigating the train station and metro was simple - just follow the color-coded signs - although some of the metro labyrinth made me wonder if it wasn't just faster to walk above ground, but it did provide a break from the sun's rays. If you aren't using the Roma Pass, hold on to your ticket stub, because transit police occasionally check on exit. The bus was ok - a little hotter, but reliable. And by using the start run/end run times printed on the bus stop signs, you can approximate the schedule. Remember, getting off/on public transport is nothing short of Darwinian - the weak will be trampled by the strong - just dive in and be strong.

If you are traveling to Rome in the near future, please know that it will be oppressively hot and consider how comfortable you are with heat and sun as you plan your day. Bring a water bottle with you, drink constantly (because you will sweat constantly) and top it off when you pass one of the ample public water fountains, which look like a tap running out of the wall. Use sunscreen (I'd see people walking around lobster red and it made me so sad to think what that was going to do to their vacation). Discover the joys of linen (I bought super comfy linen pants from a street vendor near the Vatican for 12 e). Do your Colosseum/Forum visiting in the early morning. Consider a siesta in your a/c hotel room and a refreshing cool shower during the worst heat of the day.

The food was generally fantastic. The first restaurant we stumbled into was our favorite - in an alley between the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo, Il Brillo Parlante. The bruschetta was addictive, as was the pasta l'amatriciana and the salada misto was fresh and lively. We ate here for lunch twice and sadly, never got past the primo course. Service was excellent, polite and our waiter volunteered an excellent wine at a lower price-point, too.

Finally, Two Things I Obsessed About Before That I Felt Very Silly About During My Trip:

1. Theft. I felt very safe at all times in Rome. After reading up on the net, I arrived in the city with my pacsafe bag and neck pouch, prepared to fend off professional pickpockets, baby-throwing gypsies and rose-pushing peddlers ("sona allergica!") at every corner. But boy, did I feel a little silly. Not that those things haven't happened to people and it's not important to be prudent, because it is - but I didn't experience any encounters of that sort. A simple no, wave of the hand and lack of eye-contact was all it took for us to send unwanted visitors on their way.

2. Attire. If you are really concerned with this, be assured that if you aren't wearing cut offs and t-shirts, you'll be better dressed than 90% of the tourists in Rome. And comfortable people are attractive people. There are denim, shorts, and sneakers EVERYWHERE. Wear what you'll be comfortable in 90+ degree heat in (my vote = linen!).

Rome is a gorgeous city, full of life and history and delicious food! Enjoy!

Treasure Island...
Destination Expert
for Ronda
Level Contributor
10,646 posts
28 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

So glad you had such a great time , but no gelato, how can you do Rome without gelato. LOL LOL.

NYC baby!
Level Contributor
379 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

Thanks for this nice report! We're leaving in two weeks and this is making me even more excited, despite the heat!

seattle
Level Contributor
204 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

No gelato - it was all gelati! Twice a day! LOL

Although, I think the best gelato I had was in Positano. But my husband had a cantaloupe gelato near Trevi that was fantastic.

Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
539 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

Did you visit Vatican mus? if so, was it hot inside the museum? how was th crowd?

miami beach, fl
Level Contributor
216 posts
8 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

I visited the Vatican museum last August. It was dreadfully hot.

Norwich, Connecticut
Level Contributor
147 posts
Save Reply
6. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

Great report! Glad you had a good time. I have added Il Brillo Parlante to our evergrowing list of restaurant recommendations for our trip this fall!

seattle
Level Contributor
204 posts
15 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

Yes, we toured the Vatican with 7 Hills Tours and it was the best decision we made on our trip. We would have been lost in the mammoth museum without our guide Andrea. He was very knowledgeable, had passion and humor. The tour was 2+ hours, but you are free to return to spend more time in other areas if you choose at the conclusion. It was 39 e pp and included admission.

It was warm, but not unbearably so. I think it helps that the tour begins in the Vatican "Welcome Center" which has A/C, so you aren't over heated at the start.

Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
153 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

Glad you had a great trip! I'm curious, how did you get from Rome to Positano?

wexford
Level Contributor
274 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

what is gelato?

New York City, New...
Level Contributor
38,763 posts
Save Reply
10. Re: Just Back From 5 Days in July

Gelato:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gelato