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Rome backwards?

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I am finishing up a long "post-cancer/mental health" trip with just a few days in Rome, mid-April. At a younger age I scoured the city for every possible piece of art and architecture that I could find (about all I could afford on a student budget). This time, however, I'm more into the heart of the city, the bustle, the noise, and of course, the food!! I want to eat well -- I'd like one very good meal, but otherwise just fresh good, non-tourist food.

So the reason I say backwards is that I would like to pick the things to do and places to eat first -- and then I will find a small friendly hotel in that general area.

It sounds like some of you are real pro's at Italy, so I would greatly appreciate any ideas and input you might have, as to food and shopping and also food tours. I'm not rich (especially after cancer treatments!), but this will be the bang-up end to a once in a lifetime trip so your ideas are greatly appreciated!

TF

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