Rome was the very first stop on our honeymoon and marked Howie’s very first experience off of North American soil. Arriving at 6pm, the sun was just starting to set as we took a train from the airport to Rome’s central station. With only two nights here, we needed to make the most of our time so we booked a private room at the Cesare Balbo Inn which was right in the heart of the city. This inn exceeded our expectations in every possible way! Besides the authentic Italian architecture, privacy, clean washroom and breakfast in bed, the highlight is most definitely your host Glen. He helped us plan out our evening and following day so that we could see as much as possible.
Things to know about Rome:
- Do not book an expensive hotel. There are several hostels and inns where for $120-$150 a night you can book a private double bed room. Obviously, we recommend the Cesare Balbo Inn because of the quality, service, price, and centrality to Rome
- Book your Colosseum tickets ahead of time, but in doing so, you will still have to wait in line to get in. For immediate entry, join a tour group as they get to skip the entry lines. Or, do what Howie and I did: buy your print-off tickets ahead of time, and casually butt into the entry line at the front so you don’t wait. You need to have a tough skin for dirty looks.
- Eat as much fresh pasta and pizza as possible. It is to die for. You can have pasta meals for about $15 or less. It’s unreal. Amazing. Can’t say enough about the food.
- Walk. Do not bother booking any kind of vehicle tour if you have two working legs. We walked everywhere from our hostel to the Colosseum to Vatican City and elsewhere. Walking is the best way to take in the city, nothing is more than a 30-40 min walk and you find unexpected treasures on the way.
- The pope has a morning public address on Wednesdays. Try to coordinate your visit with that if you care about that kind of thing.
- Entry to St. Peter’s Basilica is free, but the lines are huge. Join a tour group for the Vatican Museum (usually 20 to 30 euros a person) and you will get a tour through the whole Vatican, Sistine Chapel, and back entry to the Basilica without the lines.
- Embrace the night. Rome is magical at night. Visit some of the famous places at night and you will enjoy them in a whole new way.
I’m the kind of person who finds pictures tell more than a paragraph ever could so from this point I’ll let my photos do the talking!