driving in Rome!?!?!

Old Aug 27th, 2000, 03:35 AM
  #1  
Rob
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driving in Rome!?!?!

I need some advice -- I will actually be DRIVING into Rome from Tuscany and I need to know if that is a crazy idea. We're staying at the Hotel Due Torre, and I don't even know if there is parking around the place. We have four adults and one baby, so we'd like to find a safe place to park.
 
Old Aug 27th, 2000, 04:51 AM
  #2  
Maira
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It is a crazy idea. E-mail or call your hotel and ask for parking arrangements, either they should have parking facilities (expect to be charge a daily fee) or if they could fax you a map with parking lots in the neighboring area. There is a very handy map called 'Steetwise Rome' which shows parking lots. It's sold on Barnes & Noble, etc... Highly recommend it.
 
Old Aug 27th, 2000, 05:54 AM
  #3  
Robin K
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---
Driving TO Rome from Tuscany is okay. BUT driving IN Rome is not a good idea.

I'd compare the experience to that of driving in New York City or in Boston - Roman drivers are more like Bostonians in that both feel free to either accept or ignore the rules of the road. Another thing you need to be aware of is the Roman driver's "sense of space" --- cars travel very close to one another. And since many have very small cars (what size will you be renting?), they easily zip by with barely inches to spare.
OH, oh - and don't forget to watch out for the VESPAS !!! Lots of scooters in the city and they drive even crazier than the cars, darting through the traffic, even cutting across sidewalks.

I've only been a passenger, not a driver in the city (driver was a native). What's truly astounding is to watch how & where they park. They'll seemingly wedge their cars in sidewise; or better yet, will double park on a busy street to dash in for a quick morning's expresso. If you're confident that you can handle this scenario, then drive in Rome.

As you'll be traveling with 4 adults & 1 baby, I'm guessing you plan to get a full size car or van or SUV --- I would suggest either dropping them all off at the hotel and then turning in your rent vehicle OR finding out if your hotel (or nearby) has parking and LEAVE it parked while you explore Rome.

 
Old Aug 27th, 2000, 05:33 PM
  #4  
Park
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Park you car in the lot under the Borghese gardens for you stay. It has some security. But remember where you parked because returning can be confusing. As others have mention, driving in Rome is crazy. Here are a couple of rules. Autos and motorcyles must stop in crosswalks for pedestrians or risk losing licenses. Autos must stop at red lights, but motorscooters don't have to. Buses can do what ever they want.
 
Old Aug 27th, 2000, 07:14 PM
  #5  
Dan
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Rob -

Take the above advice and drop your car at the rental company's downtown location after you check in. There is no need to have a car in Rome, you would just waste money to pay for rent and parking in a garage. If you are going elsewhere after Rome, just arrange to pick up another car downtown when you leave. We did the same thing you are planning - arriving from Tuscany. Get a detailed map before you enter Rome and plot out your route to the hotel on it as street names change every block it seems. Actual driving in Rome was a piece of cake compared to Naples . Ciao!

Dan

 
Old Aug 28th, 2000, 05:24 AM
  #6  
howard
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A followup on Park's list of driving rules: If you are a pedestrian, don't assume that vehicles will stop at crosswalks for you, because they won't most of the time!
 
Old Aug 28th, 2000, 06:18 AM
  #7  
lisa peretz
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Do yourself a HUGE favor and DO NOt Drive INTO ROME. We attempted to drive in from Siena and what a giant mistake. It is so improperly marked that it's literally impossible to figure out. I had great directions, and personal tips from fellow fodorites, and a great map, and I'm pretty good with direction -- we got lost a total of 6 times in 20 minutes. I think we drove all over the suburbs, and probably across town several times by mistake: we ended up at a gas station and were very lucky to find a nice Italian man who barely spoke english to literally lead us back to our destination. Good luck!!! Take the train, it's so much more convenient and you won't miss anything on the way.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2000, 10:35 AM
  #8  
rob
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Hi Rob -

Have you considered dropping the car off someplace in Tuscany - say Florence - and just taking the train into Rome? Or dropping the car off at the Rome airport and taking the airport train into Rome?

Get rid of the car as soon as possible.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2000, 11:02 AM
  #9  
gb
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We did the same thing last summer with 2 adults and two kids. Driving in Rome is extremely difficult, but not impossible. We had a leased car, so we could not turn it in at a rental station. We did not get lost going into Rome. We went very slow, and put up with a lot of honking. But, we made it the hotel. Then, we parked the car in the Borghese lot (under the park). It was $45 for three days. For a city, that's not too bad. Went we left Rome, we did get a bit lost in one of the suburbs. We had brought a compass, so that helped. If you get your driving down to the minimal, watch all sides of the car, map out your route first. Depend on the street name signs, not directional signs. It is possible, but not to pleasant.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2000, 12:09 PM
  #10  
Audrey
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Rob,

IMO,driving in Rome is only for a certain type of driver - aggressive and extremely alert. Fortunately for me, my husband fits this description perfectly. His driving usually alarms/annoys me but in Rome he was great. This is no place for a timid person to get behind the wheel. Also, as previous posters suggested, it can be confusing to find your way. Street names change for no apparent reason and with cars whipping past you or honking (quite a musical country in this regard), the stress may get the better of you. Unless you really think that you can deal with all this, I'd turn in the car for the duration of your time in Rome.
 
Old Aug 29th, 2000, 04:08 PM
  #11  
Judy
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Hi all, esp Audrey(you could substitute Atlanta for Rome in your message,Audrey!) My cousin(who has lived in Rome for over 22 years) still does not drive there(she takes public transport). We are going there in 2 weeks and would not think of driving! Thought I would warn you however, but have a good time...
 
Old Aug 30th, 2000, 06:02 AM
  #12  
topper
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Old Aug 30th, 2000, 06:30 AM
  #13  
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