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First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

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VA
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First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

Looking for ideas for our first day and 1/2 in Rome. We arrive on a Wed. morning, and have tours scheduled for the Vatican, St .Peter's, Forum and Colosseum Fri. and Sat. My husband is a bit of a cautious traveler and so I am looking for something we could do on our own that is somewhat easy. We are staying near the Borghese Gallery, but I would love to see the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, & Piazza Navona, but am open to other ideas. Not sure how great he would feel about using the bus system. We aren't opposed to walking to get to places, but I just can't tell if that is really doable and safe. I want this to be fun for both of us so he'll want to continue to see the world!

New York City, New...
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1. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

It would be completely safe to walk, however the Galleria Borghese is not very central, so you might need to use the bus. Otherwise be prepared to walk A LOT !!!!!

And Rome is completely safe, there is minimal violent crime, so the only thing to be cautious of is pickpockets ..... as long as you use common sense and secure your valuables you should be fine.

New York City, New...
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2. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

Rome is smaller than you might think. These areas are all walkable and it is very safe. You really can't have a good sense of the city until you are there - you will feel (I am betting) immediately that you are safe and be amazed at how close various areas are that you wish to visit.

The buses are very easy to use - at least I find them to be. You buy your tickets at a newsstand and you must be sure to stamp it (there are boxes on the the bus) when you board.

carolinas
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3. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

Taxi's are your friend. They are a bargain in Rome, from Borghesi Gardens you can get anywhere in the center for €5 or so..

If you took a cab to the Pantheon you are a 5 minute walk to Piazza Navona, a few minutes more to Trevi, there are several nice churches to duck into for relief from the crowds. Santa Maria sopra Minerva is 2 minutes away and has a Michelangelo you can walk up to and touch. Ignore the hawkers at the restaurants on the piazza and walk a few steps on Via dei Pastini to Antonio's for lunch. There's also an excellent gelateria on the piazza and the famous Tazza d'Oro if you're coffee lovers.

All taxi's queue up at stands in Rome and the Pantheons is right next to the building when you're ready to leave.

Now this made me wish I were back there going on this excursion myself.

Happy travels,

Frank

Le Marche, Italy
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4. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

There is a little electric bus that runs through the Villa Borghese park, the 116, and also passes near the places you want to see. Here is its route map:

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

If you think you'll be using it a lot, you can buy a one-day transportation pass for 4 euros (6 euros after the end of May). It actually gets you closer to most places than the Hop-on,hop-off buses do. If you'll only be hopping off a few times, it would be better to buy a few single tickets for 1 euro (going up to €1.50).

VA
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5. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

This is all very helpful. It's just so hard to tell looking at a map. Thank so much for all the replies.

Washington, DC
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6. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

<It's just so hard to tell looking at a map. Thank so much for all the replies.>

It is very hard to tell looking at a map. I've been to Rome four times, and each time I am surprised anew at how close everything is even though on the map things look so far away.

Norwich, United...
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7. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

There's more in the Borghese gardens than you may have thought - and more than I've photographed...

http://www.pbase.com/isolaverde/globe

But do try the little electric buses, a great way to get around that allows you to see some of life in the quieter sidestreets:

www.pbase.com/isolaverde/electric_buses

You'll find ticket-selling machines on board but, with the fare now €1.50 (went up yesterday), a good deal of small change may be required for a day's flitting about!

If the hotel's on the far side of the Gardens, you'll probably not want to walk that repeatedly.... so perhaps either a travel card - or the Roma Pass, which includes 3 days travel, would be of use - especially if your Colosseum/Forum tour doesn't cover admission?

http://www.romapass.it/p.aspx?l=en&tid=2

(Ignore the "&Piu" version - intended for those going further afield, but suspended from sale sine diem!)

Of course, to span your Saturday, you'd not be able to start it on the Wednesday... but here's their new list of sites and prices (before any exhibition surcharges) anyway:

romapass.it/doc/sitiAderentiCostoBiglietti_e…

With either it's very handy to just be able to jump onto any bus, tram or Metro as and when you fancy - and plenty of these places pictured in the gallery below are further away (and back) than most people would ideally choose to walk:

http://www.pbase.com/isolaverde/places_rome

.... even so, do bring comfy footware - and maybe take a run through this leaflet, “Passeggiate Romane”, a collection of 18 themed walks through the city:

www.italiantouristoffice.se/sv/docs/77.pdf

Peter

Cork, Ireland
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8. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

Lovely pictures of the Borghese Gardens Peter, it is a place we missed on our last visit and I am looking forward to seeing it on our upcoming trip. We are coming in September, so hopefully it will be a cool respite for a couple of hours. It's actually one of my favourite things to do in a city - sit and relax in a cool park. We were in New York for 10 days in 2010 and my fondest memories are of afternoons spent relaxing in Central Park!

Norwich, United...
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9. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

Thanks... not sure what it is that we watch, but I'm constantly amazed at how Central Park just sits there - so 'cleverly' squeezed into the city!

Peter

East Bernard
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10. Re: First day in Rome with a cautious traveler

okay..I traveled with a cautious traveler as well and we loved Rome. Everything is within walking distance. Be sure to bring a good map and a compass but even if you get turned around it is easy to get back on track.

Learn a few phrases such as "excuse me, do you know where the... is?".. and smile... this is necessary because the streets will change names every block or so it seems! If you can find a sign! After awhile though we would both just laugh. It really doesn't matter where you are on the map anyway---You are in Rome!! Just stop and have gelatto....there is a church on every corner so you can always see whatever it is in front of you!! We actually quit trying to "find" things and just walked around and stumbled upon everything...that was the most fun! Great city..:)