Rome was an AMAZING trip!
I went by myself in 2016 I think and it was well worth it.
First thing I did was go to St. Peter’s Basilica. The lines to get into this place were insane…insane.
It was also very confusing trying to figure out how to get into the area and where the line started since they had a ton of ropes out it was like a maze. If you go there make sure you dress appropriately! I saw so many people getting turned away after waiting in the line because their shoulders were showing or their dresses and shorts were too short. So if it’s hot at least bring a scarf to cover up with or just plan to wear something conservative that day/time of day.
Next I went to Castel Sant’Angelo, which is right down the road from the basilica. You can get some really nice views from the top of the castle!
The second day I was there I got up really early to go see the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. I was very surprised at how close the Colosseum is to the street. I stepped out of the metro station and there it was, directly across the street!
I decided not to pay to get inside the Colosseum OR the Roman Forum. Instead if you walk down past the ruins you’ll come up on the Altare della Patria, which, for me, was even more impressive than the Colosseum!
ANYWAY, before you get to the front of the Altare della Patria, there’s a pathway along the left side of the building after you get past the Roman Forum. If you hike up that pathway you can get some incredible and FREE views of the Roman Forum!
The Trevi Fountain was a little “harder” to find. Not actually that difficult since there are a few signs that tell you which direction to go in, however, the fountain is tightly packed in between a bunch of buildings. So in order to get there you need to walk down a few “alley ways”, which made me a bit nervous being by myself. The “alleys” wind around so much that I turned a corner and BOOM there is was! Similar to the Colosseum, things seem to sneak up on you a bit in this city. It was also WAY smaller than I had anticipated…tv must exaggerate size a bit BUT it was still incredible.
I did a walking tour which met up at the Spanish steps. Unfortunately, they were cleaning them or doing some construction on the steps when I went so a lot of it was covered up.
Another thing I did not go see in Rome was the Sistine Chapel BUT our tour guide took us, for FREE, to the Church of St. Ignatius of Loyola with similarly amazing paintings! I would have never gone into this building by looking at it on the outside but it is a hidden gem in Rome! Added bonus, you’re allowed to take pictures of the paintings in this church too.
The Pantheon was also very impressive. Our tour guide told us that the pillars on the outside are each 1 solid piece of stone that had to be transported from Egypt and each pillar weighs 60 tons! They had to be cut in Egypt, moved onto a boat, sailed to Italy and transported again on land until they got to Rome…crazy people! It was also interesting to learn about the religious aspect of the building. There are 7 statues inside that each represented gods of 7 planets, which apparently also represent each day of the week.
I got a few more pictures after the tour and headed back to the hotel.
Rome was pretty amazing! However, do not underestimate the size of this place. Looking at a map, everything looked decently walkable but my goodness I must have walked for miles and miles and miles while I was there. I still, almost two years later have stretch mark/bruises on my thighs from all the walking I did on this trip. Unless you plan of catching a taxi or taking the metro everywhere, wearing comfortable shoes is a must! And I don’t mean cute comfortable shoes but legit old lady comfortable. Would have made this trip a lot more enjoyable and less exhausting but I’m still so glad that I went 🙂