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Bicycling in Rome

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Easton, Pennsylvania
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Bicycling in Rome

Walking is difficult for me - can I bicycle instead of walking and would cars be a bother. I plan to be in Rome for 2 weeks.

Le Marche, Italy
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for Rome, Marche
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1. Re: Bicycling in Rome

I wouldn't ride a bicycle in Rome myself. The traffic is chaotic and what bike lanes there are tend to be outside the historic center, where most of the things of interest to tourists are.

There is a good bus system in Rome which should get you close to most of the things that you would want to see. Taxis are also fairly affordable and can usually drop you close to the sites you want to visit, even if they're in limited traffic zones.

There are several little electric buses that go all around the center of Rome, passing close to many of the piazzas, archeological sites, and museums that people want to visit. You can see the routes here:

http://www.atac.roma.it/files/doc.asp?r=9

There is a little inset map at the lower left whose text hasn't been translated into English. This shows a part of the route that isn't run on Sundays and holidays due to street closing. The curtailed route is followed starting at 3 PM on the day before the closing.

The Vatican Museums offers a free service of wheelchair rental. I urge you to use it, because there is a long, crowded corridor leading to the Sistine Chapel. I believe you'd need someone to accompany you to push the wheelchair.

The Palatine Hill (adjacent to the Roman Forum) offers wheelchair tours, and have electric scooters available on Tuesday and Saturday mornings for those who have difficulty walking. You can see the details at the bottom of the information panel on this page:

pierreci.it/en/museums-and-monuments/palatin…

These two pages have useful information for people who have difficulty walking, or are confined to a wheelchair:

www.globalaccessnews.com/rome_chabner09.htm

Some of the information on the page is outdated; specifically, buses and metro services are more accessible than they were when it was written, although there is still more improvement in the plans.

The following page has good information about the accessibility of churches, museums, and other sites, under the heading "Visiting Rome" on the right, and also information about hotels and restaurants.

www.handyturismo.it/modules.php…

U.S. expats
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for Windsor, London, Dry Tortugas National Park
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2. Re: Bicycling in Rome

Rome is a wonderful city to walk through. The historic district especially is just rife with little details that would be missed on a bike. I'm not sure that the cobblestones would be all that pleasant either. And there are an awful lot of people walking through some narrow little streets, so you'd either be walking the bike after them or knocking them down.

If you stay in the Piazza Navona/Pantheon area, you will probably never have to take public transport, except to and from the airport, or perhaps to the Vatican.

Easton, Pennsylvania
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3. Re: Bicycling in Rome

Appreciate all your words, particularly the links you provided. Very helpful.

Le Marche, Italy
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for Rome, Marche
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4. Re: Bicycling in Rome

Here is a link I forgot to put in the previous response, with information about the Vatican Museum wheelchair service:

…vatican.va/3_EN/…MV_Info_Servizi.html

Norwich, United...
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5. Re: Bicycling in Rome

Since last year, Rome's public mobility organisation, ATAC, has been running the city's cycle-sharing scheme - which operates along similar lines to the one in London.

Their website starts here..

http://www.bikesharing.roma.it/?EN

Not a lot of English there and, as I remember, there was originally some difficulty for foreigners in registering - because of the need for a suitable bank account or similar method to pay.

Judging by these rules from that site, they've solved the issue and - with two weeks in the city - you might find it worthwhile?

pbase.com/isolaverde/image/136143638/original

An admirable project, that's been running in one form or another for several years - and we've often watched the mechanics come round in the evenings to check and maintain the bikes 'stored' at various of the pickup and dropoff sites around the city.

This one's immediately in front of the Parliament building...

www.pbase.com/isolaverde/image/102151579

(Taken before the change of colour scheme - they're now all painted green!)

Peter

rome
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6. Re: Bicycling in Rome

Peter, good luck finding those bikes now.

Even if you have access to bikes in Rome, don't do it as an alternative to walking the sites. You can bike safely in the parks (like Villa Borghese) and along the Tiber (the lower level) but on the streets it is neck-breaking.

Norwich, United...
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7. Re: Bicycling in Rome

For the sake of those, like me, who've no idea what that remark was supposed to mean, perhaps you'd care to explain further?

Are you saying the scheme has been stopped, that it's so popular one can't find a bike to use, or what, please?

Peter

Norwich, United...
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8. Re: Bicycling in Rome

Ah - I see now!

And perhaps entrusting the sheme to the bus/tram operators never was such a wise idea?

…corriere.it/roma/notizie/cronaca/11_aprile_…

asca.it/regioni-ROMA_BIKE_SHARING__TABACCHIE…

etc!

Peter

rome
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9. Re: Bicycling in Rome

sorry if my response was not clear. I sure did mean smth along the lines of what your newer links are saying. The system was bad in every thinkable way - from how you could rent them to where, and the number and quality of the bikes. One never sees them around, either.

But just to make it clear: Even when the bike sharing system is bettered (officially by next year - ha ha), as long as there are no *physically protected* bike lanes, they are a danger, especially for tourists, who are by definition not familiar with the streets, the driving; and are distracted. Note I find it not enough if there are 'only' bike lanes; as we all know, in a city where people move everything in their way to park their cars, they will also park and/or drive on a bike lane if there is the physical chance to do so.

Maryland
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10. Re: Bicycling in Rome

What is the best way to reach the lower level bike path near the Tiber? We are staying at Hotel Santa Maria in Trastevere. Are there stairs down near Ponte Garibaldi?

Also, can this path be used for jogging?