2nd trip to Rome suggestions

Old May 21st, 2024, 04:04 AM
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Here's another vote for Villa Farnesina --very interesting and charming, and the grounds and building are like a gem hiding in plain sight.
We arranged a tour with Serena Cantagalli, and she was simply terrific. You can check out her website, https://www.serenacantagallitours.com/, to get a feel for her tours and her personality. If you let her know your interests, and what you've already seen/done in Rome, she will help craft a tour that fits your needs.
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Old May 22nd, 2024, 04:14 AM
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I want to thank everyone for their suggestions. I am so grateful for the tips. Just a little clarification and edit to my original post. My very first trip solo was to Rome. I did start it off with an organized tour and that was what I referred to as the “main sites” - it was as good tour group, but I knew I had just skimmed the surface. I stayed on at the end of the tour of Italy and literally, just walked with no plan. I enjoyed every minute of it. During that time, I did go to the Keats museum and Villa Borghese.

Someone noted that they have been to Rome multiple times and they still have more to see. I can truly appreciate that.

I love how this itinerary is shaping up, but do feel frustrated that I might be slowed down by heat and crowds. Right now, I have one major site a day planned out and plan to explore the area for the rest of the day.

so a couple of more questions (and thanks for sticking it out for my long-winded post):

I have booked a tour for early morning to the Vatican. What can I tack on in that area?

I plan to do a repeat visit to Villa Borghese - how can one not? I am inclined to do a Bernini Day but that would mean a lot of travelling - am I right? Is there anything close to Villa Borghese that you would recommend?

I have one full day dedicated to the area around Travestere. I noted the walks and sites so that seems a great itinerary. Is there any suggested restaurants that I should pre book?

thanks so so much all!
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Old May 22nd, 2024, 07:47 AM
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I'll repeat my earlier comment that the Scavi tour under St. Peter's has been one of the most interesting things we've done/seen in Rome.
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Old May 22nd, 2024, 10:12 AM
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A couple of restaurants in Trastavere:
Cristo Campo, Via d. Lungaretta (love their Beef Strips w/Tomatoes & Arugula)
Ristorante Cornucopia, Piazza in Piscinula 18

I don't know if they need to be booked, I've only been to both for lunch, but I've found in general that it's been a lot more necessary to make dinner reservations post-Covid.

Last edited by SusanP; May 22nd, 2024 at 10:15 AM.
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Old May 22nd, 2024, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Jean
I'll repeat my earlier comment that the Scavi tour under St. Peter's has been one of the most interesting things we've done/seen in Rome.
Another vote for the Scavi tour, it’s a fabulous experience. Last November we did an early morning private tour of the Sistine Chapel and Vatican museums, then a Scavi tour at 1.30. Worked perfectly.

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Last edited by geetika; May 22nd, 2024 at 10:16 AM.
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Old May 22nd, 2024, 11:15 PM
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I wouldn't search for anything very strenuous or far away after a morning at the Vatican Museums and St. Peter's Basilica. You may very well be exhausted. We once had planned something for the afternoon following a morning at the Vatican, but even finding a bus stop required too much effort.

I agree that the "Scavi" necropolis under the Basilica is very interesting. I don't know that I'd want to do it on the same day. I myself might prefer to visit just the Basilica and the Scavi, skipping the Vatican Museums. If I ever return to the Vatican Museums, it will be on a night tour, when the crowding is bearable.

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Old May 22nd, 2024, 11:25 PM
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I've just returned from a weekend in Rome with my daughter and granddaughter. I saw a few very interesting things I had never seen before, on my x-teenth trip to Rome:

Weekend in Rome
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Old May 23rd, 2024, 02:45 AM
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the last time we were in Rome, a couple of years ago, we booked a late afternoon tour at the Villa Borghese, through their official website, and it was fantastic. that timing might work out well if you already have something planned for the morning, and can take a bit of a siesta to get out of the heat in early to mid afternoon.
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Old May 23rd, 2024, 02:13 PM
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Here are a few ideas that you might not have done on your first trip:

Unique Museums:
Galleria Doria Pamphilj:This private gallery houses a stunning collection of Renaissance and Baroque art, including works by Caravaggio, Raphael, and Titian. It's a bit smaller than some of the other major museums, but that can be a nice change, and the collection is incredible.

Museo dell'Alto Medioevo (Museum of the Early Middle Ages):This museum explores the period between the fall of the Roman Empire and the rise of the Holy Roman Empire. It's not huge, but it has some interesting artifacts and mosaics from this often-overlooked period.
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Old May 23rd, 2024, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by bvlenci
In my previous post, the name is Barberini Gallery, not Barberi.

Someone else mentioned the Ostia Antica archeological site, larger than Pompeii and mostly very well preserved. The two sites are different in several ways. Pompeii is a sort of snapshot of Roman life. The city had been greatly damaged in a previous earthquake. In fact, some reconstruction was still ongoing at the time of the volcanic eruption. Therefore nearly everything you see is from the 1st century. Ostia, on the other hand was a flourishing port and later a residential town for 1000 years. It gradually declined and was abandoned in the early middle ages, and was mostly buried by drifting sand. The port had silted up, and the residents were subject to attacks from pirates. At some point, the aqueduct that supplied fresh water was destroyed. A castle was built near the town so the residents would have a safe refuge in the event of raids, and gradually the town relocated to the vicinity of the castle. The castle can be visited.

The other big difference is that Pompeii was a middle class, mainly residential, town, almost a bedroom community of Naples. Of course there were artisans and shops and other support services, so not all the residents were middle class. Ostia, on the other hand, was a working port town. (After the port silted up, it became more of a residential town.) You can see an ancient Roman "osteria" bar/restaurant, with intact counters, a wine cooler, and a mosaic which served as a menu. There is a multi story apartment building; an ancient Roman public toilet; an amphitheatre; the remains of a Christian basilica, a synagogue, and a Mithraic temple. There is a piazza lined with the shops or offices of merchants. There are many mosaic floors and statues of deities of various religions; it was a multi-cultural place. There's a small museum where various things found on the site are preserved.

Ostia Antica Is a place where a good guide can make your visit more interesting, because it's not easy to find your way around. Even with a map, and having been there multiple times, I tend to get lost.

The last time we were there, we rented an audio guide. We punched in the numbers of the first few sites, and listened to the explanation of the site. However, after a while we saw no more numbers, until we finally saw one lying in the middle of the road. Maybe this has been remedied.

https://www.ostia-antica.org/index.html

You now have more than enough suggestions to fill your time in Rome. Maybe you understand why there are still things I still haven't been able to see after multiple visits.
That is amazing! I watched the video and now I need to go! I don't know how I am going to fit everything in!
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Old May 23rd, 2024, 06:36 PM
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**I have booked a tour for early morning to the Vatican. What can I tack on in that area?**

The Mercato Trionfale is a few blocks from the Vatican Museum entrance if that interests you.
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Old May 24th, 2024, 03:42 AM
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Originally Posted by kybourbon
**I have booked a tour for early morning to the Vatican. What can I tack on in that area?**

The Mercato Trionfale is a few blocks from the Vatican Museum entrance if that interests you.
Another place I've never been!
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Old May 24th, 2024, 08:18 AM
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I've read about Mercado Trionfale but haven't made it there yet.
If you're interested in markets, another good one is Campagna Amica Market, Via di S. Teodoro 74, open Sat/Sun. It's a permanent setup, lots of locals (I didn't hear any English), lots of produce as well as packaged items and stuff in jars if you like to bring food home. Out the back door, there are vendors where you can buy lunch. The frito misto was delicious!
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