Three-Day Getaway to Rome
17 December, 2015
Rome has so much to see and do that the best thing is to tour it at your leisure and sightsee with a view to coming back for a second stint. Above all, take some sturdy footwear with you as it’s best to see the city on foot, strolling along its streets. At each corner you will come across a picture capable of transporting you to some bygone era, or a church beckoning you to enter and discover the treasure hidden inside. Here are some pointers to tackling a three-day getaway in this beautiful city.
First Day – a Walk Through Ancient Rome
The best way to make initial contact with the city is by visiting its ancient sites. We recommend you start by heading forIl Vittoriano,a monument to Victor Emmanuel II, affording some splendid views of the complex making up the ancient Roman city: theCircus Maximus,the Roman Forum, the Colosseum, the Arch of Constantine, the Forum of Augustus and the ever-impressive Trajan’s Column. If you’re up for something a little special, take a stroll through the Roman forum at dusk and you will experience a magical moment. And, if you’re seeking something more secluded, head for the Church of San Bonaventura al Palatino, a backwater of peace.
After so much excitement, the best thing is to make for the district of Trastevere and delight in its culinary offerings and nightlife. To whet your appetite, have a glass of wine at the Ombre Rosse Caffe (Piazza S.Egidio 12,13) before going for a genuine Italian dinner without any frills at Trattoria da Lucia (Vicolo del Mattonato 2).
Second Day – the Vatican, Piazze, Palazzi, and Umpteen Churches
Whether you are religious or not, you can’t leave Rome without having seen St Peter’s Basilica. As much as you may have seen it in pictures or on the television, until you actually set foot in St Peter’s Square, you cannot imagine the sheer scale of this monument. Once inside, everything seems overwhelming, from the dome, designed by Michelangelo, to the incredible marble decoration, Bernini’s baldachin crowning the high altar and the sculptural groups such as Michelangelo’s Pietà and Bernini’s tomb of Urban VIII. “The early bird catches the worm”, so we recommend getting there early to avoid long queues.
Hard by St Peter’s are the Vatican Museums which, among many other art history gems, feature the Sistine Chapel. You are urged to book ahead to avoid long waits. If you’re into art, make sure you extend your visit to include the Stanze di Raffaello, four rooms adorned with frescoes by Raphael which are well worth seeing.
After this double session, both mind and body are going to need a good rest. Time to head for Castel Sant'Angelo, cross the river Tiber and regain your strength in one of the eateries along the trendy Via dei Coronari. We recommend you try the Italian cheese and sausage boards at Fresco Coronari.
Once you’re restored, it’s time to descend on the Piazza Navona where you will come across the original Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, designed by Bernini, and the Chiesa di Sant’Agnese in Agone, by Borromini. Not far from there stands the Pantheon of Agrippa, another must-see piece of Roman architecture. Built from AD 118 to 125, you can’t fail to be moved by its stunning dome. Slip inside and seek out the tomb of Raphael, housed in one of the side chapels. Culminating this itinerary is another of the city’s classics – the Fontana di Trevi.
A good way of rounding off this intense day’s sightseeing is to stroll along the Campo dei Fiori and roam the streets surrounding the Piazza Farnese. Stop off for a break at the Caffè Perù and then cap your itinerary by dining at the Cul de Sac (Piazza di Pasquino, 73).
Third Day – Picnic with the Borghese
The Villa Borghese Gardens make the perfect setting for ending off a getaway to Rome. On your way there, make sure you go along the Via del Babuino and stop off at both the Piazza di Spagna and Piazza dei Popolo. From there, walk up the hill to the Villa Borghese gardens which afford panoramic views of Rome from the highest point in the city. Culminating a tour of this magnificent park, full of statues and leisure areas, is the Galleria Borghese. This museum houses the final jewels of your journey – the frescoes adorning its interior, sculptures by Bernini and a collection of paintings.
Ready to be spellbound by the beauty of the Eternal City? Book your Vueling tickets here.
Text and images by ISABELYLUIS Comunicación
17 December, 2015