Where We Went: Rome - Our Trip to Italy
Let’s talk about Rome. Make sure it’s on your bucket list if you’ve not been yet. Will I be back. Maybe. So many things we missed on our short stay in Roma. A week. And I feel we didn’t waste a second of our precious time. Everywhere you go, there’s something amazing Yet, I think when we return to Italy, we may skip Rome to go visit other parts.
Very tiring. I think one of the reasons is that being the first part of our journey, we were horribly jet lagged. The flight was long. And we hit the ground running. I had thought that going in October would keep us from most of the heat and most of the tourists. Although the temperatures were in the high 70’s low 80’s the humidity was much higher than I had supposed. Being from LA, I can take heat. Being from LA, I’m a real wimp when it comes to humidity. It’s not anywhere near as bad as say Orlando in August, but all of Italy felt a lot warmer than I thought it would be. A taxi driver told us that things don’t really cool until November.
The other thing about Rome is that the street vendors are relentless. Florence which I shall speak about in a later post, also had them but they seemed fewer and less aggressive.
Everywhere in Italy was crowded except for one part which I’ll post about later and why there were few people there.
One of the reasons we chose October was to avoid the huge summer crowds. I can’t imagine what it is like in August. I know that some people MUST travel then. But if you can, don’t go anywhere except your own backyard in August IMHO.
A previous post talked about where we stayed. It was a little off the beaten path but everything was easily reached by subway.
Before you go, make sure you know what you want to do on what days and that those things are open on that day. If you can and don’t mind locking in days and prepaying, buy your tickets online.
If you’re going to go to the Vatican and visit the Sistine Chapel, make sure you have tickets before you go. Do not buy tickets the same day you want to go. You will spend an entire day in line. On your way to the Vatican you will be accosted by people selling ways to “skip the line”. I have no idea whether they actually work but looking at the line, I can see why people are tempted. Did I tell you that the line to buy tickets is horrifically long? Because it is. Horrifically long.
We got in right away because we had tickets.
The above photo is of one of the robots that protect the Vatican. At least that’s what it looked like to me.
The Vatican is a great place to visit. It’s a must really. And the Sistine Chapel is of course the main reason to go. It’s beautiful. But oddly, for me, it was a little bit of a let down.
Major tip: Bring binoculars.
I wish I had.
I’d have used my telephoto lens but no video or photography is allowed. The cries of the guards of “no photo! No video!” ring out all the time. The place is packed. So the idea that you’re going to contemplate the stunning ceiling in sombre meditation is not going to happen. The other favorite cry by the guards is “Quiet! Silence! Shhhh!”. If you’re really interested on what is on the ceiling, then a book is probably going to give you a better idea. But it won’t give you the whole view. But then you also don’t get jostled by the many tour groups. The Chapel is a must. But before going become a billionaire and arrange a private showing. I’m planning on that for my next visit. Yessiree!
Then go to St. Peter’s square. We didn’t go into the main church. The line was very long. No way to skip that and we were beat.
If you have a first day like ours, then you’re going to find out very quickly whether picked the right walking shoes.
I loved Rome and one day I hope to return. After I’ve been to many other places though.
Dress lightly but you’re going to need to cover up to get into the Vatican. They didn’t seem overly aggressive about the dress code. But i would hate to be turned away just because I didn’t follow a few simple rules.
I’ll have a post about navigating la Metro. Later. As well as other things we did in Rome.
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