An extensive network of bus lines that covers all of the Lazio region is operated by COTRAL (Consorzio Trasporti Lazio). There are several main bus stations. Long-distance and suburban COTRAL bus routes terminate either near Tiburtina station or at outlying Metro stops, such as Rebibbia and Ponte Mammolo (Line B) and Anagnina (Line A).
Fares are reasonable, especially with the BIRG (Bigiletto Integrale Regionale Giornali), which allows you to travel on all the lines (and some railroad lines) up to midnight on the day of the ticket's first validation. The cost of a BIRG depends upon the distance to your destination and how many "zones" you travel through. Because of the extent and complexity of the system, it's a good idea to consult with your hotel concierge or to telephone COTRAL's central office when planning a trip. COTRAL buses and other similar bus companies such as SENA are good options for taking short day trips from Rome. There are several buses that leave daily from Rome's Ponte Mammolo (Line B) Metro station for the town of Tivoli, where Hadrian's Villa and Villa D'Este are located. SENA buses leave from Rome's Tiburtina Metro and train station (Line B) and will take you to Siena and other towns in Tuscany.
While the bus may be an affordable way of moving around, keep in mind that it's also affordable for locals trying to get to and from work. This means certain buses experience heavy commuter traffic and are often very crowded. Just because you've managed to purchase a ticket doesn't mean you're guaranteed a seat. If you don't manage to get a seat, you might have to stand for the entire ride. Hence, what may be more affordable isn't exactly more comfortable.
COTRAL (800/174471. www.cotralspa.it.)
SENA (0577/208282. www.sena.it.)
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