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Rome- mixed feelings

Boston
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Rome- mixed feelings

We are going to Italy for 12 days in Sept. We are planning on going the Florence, and Positano ( my choices), and Rome ( his choice). I have been hearing very bad reviews about Rome recently. I hear that crime is extremely high. Can anyone tell us what areas we should avoid staying near? Should we plan ahead to have someone pick us up at the train station to go to the hotel? How safe is it really to walk around the city at night? Are there areas we should avoid completely?

We normally would not think about this too much, but the recent reviews have me concerned. Thanks!

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1. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

Rome is very safe indeed. Perfectly safe at night. I assure you you will not feel threatened anywhere. Just go and enjoy it.

Like all large cities pickpockets operate (mainly on the transportation system) but as long as u take reasonable precautions you should be ok.

Violet crime is very rare indeed.

Just go and enjoy it.

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Dublin
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2. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

Where are you coming in to? If it's Rome you are going to have to travel to Florence , return to Rome and then go down to Positano. Travel will take a bit of your time.

As for your question I don't think you should have problems if you would not normally worry too much about this sort of thing.

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Coeur D'alene, Idaho
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3. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

I wouldn't worry at all. If you're the paranoid type (I am), I'd suggest not staying near the train station and not taking buses or the metro. It's easy to avoid these things if you stay near Piazza Navona/Pantheon area. We walked everywhere -- day and night -- other than one taxi ride from the Vatican to the Colosseum. We were there in the busy month of July and we had no problems at all. There were four of us, we each had a camera, we looked like tourists, and aside from a few persistent rose sellers, we weren't approached by anyone in any way that we felt was threatening.

There are beggars, just like in any city, but they aren't threatening, and they range from annoying (the perfectly healthy looking ones) to sad (one guy on a skateboard with severely deformed legs -- we gave him a few Euro).

There were two females in our group (including my 13 year old daughter) and we walked late into the evening, but we stayed in the tourist areas and we had a wonderful time.

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4. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

Resbelge,

You live in Boston. Having visited Boston many times (I am from New York) I can guarantee you Rome is MUCH safer than Boston. The only thing you really have to look out for are pick pockets and scams, which if you read the Rick Steves website or this website regularly, you will be wise to them anyway. I find it strange that you would be so worried being from a big city like Boston. It's usually the small town folks that are paranoid. Don't let anyone else's fear own you!

I live in a small town now and believe me, I look so forward to traveling to places like Rome that are so ALIVE!! Rome is so beautiful and full of history, it would be a shame to miss it for someone else's fear. Let loose and enjoy La Citta Eterna!!

Positano and Florence are nice too, so you should see these places too, but Rome is a must!

By the way, the shopping is phenomenal is Rome!! Any womans dream come true!!

Buon Viaggio!

Liz

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5. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

Honestly if you're worried about travelling to Rome, you might as well move in to a bunker.

Seriousely apart from pickpockets there is nothing to fear.

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coxs creek, kentucky
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6. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

GO TO ROME !!!! Seriously, you can not miss it !! I almost didn't go to Rome because I really wanted to see the Tuscany area, but I am here to tell you that Rome literally knocked the socks off of me !! I am soooooo glad that I changed my mind. And you will find pickpockets and petty thieves anywhere. We were there in March-do not let people talk you out of staying a little closer to the train station-we were about 5-10 minutes away and there was NO problems with that area. You can have a pickpocket by the steps of St. Peters or on the Spanish Steps. No matter where you travel you should use common sense just as you should when at home. Go and do not let it ruin your vacation !!!!! Please read all the reviews because I have seen plenty good ones too !!!!!!!! And we also walked everywhere late at night and still saw absolutely no problems !!! Packed busses could be a problem if you are not a little careful, I guess---we didn't use busses as we prefer to use our feet.

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Carmel, California
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7. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

Rome is a big, bold and beautiful city and it's not for everyone. If you're looking for a meek, quiet city, Rome is not for you. However, if you are looking for a city that is an outdoor museum with colorful cast of characters, delicious food and all around fantastic ambiance, then Rome is the place for you and your family.

As you've heard, you need to be careful about pickpockets in the Metro and on the buses, do not hang around the immediate area of the Termini Station, do not eat around the immdiate area of most attractions and make sure you wear a money or neck belt to protect your money.

The best thing you can do is to walk around with confidence and joy, the worst thing you can do is to be apprehensive about your surroundings.

I read some of the reviews about safety on Rome before our trip--and at first was taken aback by the pictures some painted. I learned from the tips that were given and the negative stuff was taken with a grain of salt, learn from it and move on.

Rome is a city that is not to be missed.

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NYC
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8. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

Hi

I agree with the previous posts. Whoever has led you to believe that "crime is extremely high" is inaccurate...Rome has some pickpockets/petty crime like any other big city (and prob. safer than NYC or Boston, which are pretty safe these days anyway), but I've never felt unsafe day or night, alone or with companions, anywhere I've traveled within the city over the course of several trips now. It's a wonderful, vibrant place that's chock full of history, art, architecture, food, wine, shopping...and stylish Italianos. Just as you would use common sense walking around Boston, riding on public transportation & waiting in train/bus/subway stations, apply the same rules to Rome. I've never stayed near the train station, as I prefer the area around Piazza Navona/Campo dei Fiori/Piazza Farnese (sort of the "Renaissance Rome" area).

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Kamloops, BC...
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9. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

resbelge --

Rome is much safer than Boston -- I've been mugged in Bean town twice - both times at gun point -- once at an ATM with a security camera - but never anywhere in Western Europe.

In almost 15 years of travelling in Italy, I've never even had my pocket picked, which, by the way, is what the majority of the "crime" posts have been about.

By the way, out of all my trips (2 a year, generally) I have travelled alone all but two times. I have walked alone at night without ever feeling in jeopardy. I have also taken the last Metro run, alone, at night without any consequence, except that it was harder to get up the next morning.

I haven't ever heard that tourists have been physically attacked by pickpockets anywhere in Western Europe, but perhaps a local expert could correct me if I'm wrong.

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Dundee, United...
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10. Re: Rome- mixed feelings

I was in Rome for a week at the beginning of April, with my 14 yr old and 19yr old. We stayed on Via Zanardelli, just behind Piazza Navona, and apart from one ride on the tourist bus, walked everywhere. We caught the Terravision bus from Ciampino, and then walked round to get a taxi, where a girl was "helping" people into taxis. We ignored her, even when she'd helped us get our luggage into the first one, and did not tip her, and the taxi driver seemed to think this was correct. This was the only time I felt even vaguely threatened. I walked alone for miles, and my daughter and I walked the streets just wandering at night, and felt very safe all the time. Plenty of beggars, but no other problems.

Do like the Romans do, and carry your shoulder bag over the opposite shoulder, holding it to the front, keep notes of all passports etc. in case, and don't look like a victim! Enjoy the trip.

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