We all want to experience a city, a place, a destination. Walking where millions of people have walked before you. Seeing what they have seen or perhaps something new. The same destination, however, leaves a different experience for every person. I enjoy wandering, sometimes ending up lost. Enjoying a new street just off the beaten path. The lonely road is perhaps the most interesting.When asked what my favorite city is? I often reply Rome and when asked why? “Because it’s Rome”! There is no explanation needed once you have visited this cosmopolitan city. You can’t possibly go wrong with a city consumed with art, architecture, culture and food. In the summer tourists abound in the piazzas adding to the vibrancy of this beautiful city.
I’m obsessed with the coffee in Italy. Starting with the way you go about ordering and purchasing. Here you go: Pay first, obtain your receipt, squeeze into your space at the counter (the way the locals do it) standing, not sitting, await your coffee and enjoy. Always engage with the barista offering a Giorno and a smile and then Ciao to everyone before you leave. Seizing every small moment that reminds me I am once again in Italy!
Numerous neighborhoods and districts deserve your attention while in the city of Rome. The Prati district continues to be one of Rome’s best kept secret. Stylish buildings, charm, high-end shopping, wine bars and restaurants comprise this area. Located near the Vatican and across the Tiber makes Prati an excellent location for sight-seeing. Sometimes confused as primarily a residential area and often missed by people. In this area you will find the desirable walking street Cola di Rienzo, lacking tourists but not charm. Extensive and complete with pop up fashion stores, street vendors, the Coin Department store and a few gourmet markets.
Make certain to stop by Il Piccolo Diavolo – located on the Piazza Cola di Rienzo for espresso or cappuiccinio. Spend the early part of an afternoon strolling down the street dropping into stores and end at The Vatican. Get your fill of photographic moments then stroll back on the opposite side of the street and do not miss the gourmet store Castroni for traditional Italian products and gifts. There is also a lively coffee bar if you need another pick me up. By the time you have reached the end of the street you are usually ready to for an apertif. Cafe Portofino offers up an array of nibbles with one of the best Aperol Spritz in the area! Take a seat, rest up and ponder dinner ideas!
Summer time in Rome is perfect for frequenting the various roof top bars. Two of my favorites are The Hotel Raphael and Terrazza Borromini! To get there make your way to the Piazza Navona area. Even during the hottest of summer days you can usually feel a breeze as you look over the rooftops of Rome. Gaze onto the Piazza watching the tourists from far above. Enjoy a glass of wine as the sun sets because after all it’s Italy and you don’t need to make dinner reservations until at least 9 pm.
Pizza or pasta always seems to be the question of the night! Sit outside, order your meal, people watch and enjoy the ambience.
Is Gelato over rated? Um No! Eating gelato seems to be somewhat of an art. First everyone has their favorite shops and flavors. People like to either sit down during a hot afternoon to indulge in their best-loved cold treat or stand outside the shop in the evening enjoying their cone! You can find a plethora of gelaterias all over Rome. Offering plenty of opportunity to discover your favorite! Remember you have probably been walking all day…don’t feel guilty!