Rome Termini station is a pretty big station and we arrived on time. We were not well prepared on the arrangements from the station to our hotel. So it took time for us to figure out the available transportation. As we had heavy bags, we didn’t want to try the bus nor the metro options. We took a taxi directly to our hotel. In Rome they charge you 1 Euro for every bag plus a 2 Euro service charge.
Domus Sessorina Hotel is the place we stayed and it was an ancient Church that they converted partly to a hotel. A different experience for us from the usual hotel stay that we normally do. A huge entrance with high ceilings gave us a feeling that we were visiting a museum 🙂
Breakfast at Domus is the standard Italian breakfast and we started to plan our day in Rome
We purchased the 3 day Roma Pass from our hotel that turned out to be an excellent choice. With Roma pass, you get to visit 2 museums for free, free metro & bus transportation and reduced entrance fees to other museums & monuments.
I’ve seen a lot of pictures on the Roman Coloseum and was always amazed at the architectural beauty of the Coloseum. The Roman Coloseum was our first stop for the day. As expected there was extremely a very big line and there were several tour guides standing outside the coliseum waiting for their customers. It looked like we’ll take at least 2 hours to head towards the entrance. There was one guide who approached us for the tour and we declined the tour option – But checked with her accidently about the Roma Pass and she was very nice to point us to the right entrance. It seems some of the attractions in Rome have a direct entrance for Roma Pass holders and entered the coliseum in less than 10 minutes.
There are 3 attractions (Roman Coloseum, Palatine Hall and Foro Romano) that you can see within the coliseum area with the Roma Pass (Only single entrance for all 3 attractions is counted and not 3). Our next stop was at the Palatine Hall close to the Roman Coloseum.
After lunch we took an hour break relaxing outside the Coloseum’s exterior walls.The weather was extremely hot close to 87 degrees and we kept us hydrated drinking lots of water.
Piazza Venetian Palace was the next spot on our list and below is some of the pictures. It’s a beautiful palace that is completely constructed in white Marble stone. We tried the Tirammese cake with Café Latte later in the evening to gain back the energy to our next journey for that day.
Pantheon Church & Trevi Fountain was our next destinations for that evening. Pantheon is a beautiful church and we spent some time sitting inside the church. Outside the church there are lot of shops and restaurants with few street music performances that kept the place lively.
Trevi Fountain is a famous landmark and you can see a big crowd always at this place. The fountain is beautiful to watch both during day and night time. There is a belief to throw a coin into the fountain facing backwards and make a wish as you throw the coin. You can see lot of coins inside the fountain area. We spent some time sitting near the fountain.
It was like 6.45 PM and Mani was able to see a Chinese restaurant sign board close to the Trevi Fountain location. It’s been like a week without rice and I really wanted to eat some rice. I was extremely happy to see this option that was available to us pretty close to that area. At first we were skeptical on the taste of the food as we are so used to eating American Chinese food. Whatever it is, we decided to take the risk and ordered the dishesJ
We came back to the Trevi fountain to watch it with the lights turned on. The crowd was still the same at all times of the day J. It was indeed a beautiful sight to watch the fountain.
At around 9 PM we took the bus to head back to our hotel. We wanted to view the Coloseum during night time with the lights. We got down at the Coloseum stop and spent few minutes watching the Coloseum at a closer look with lights turned on and took few pictures with night effect. The pictures actually were very beautiful with night light and thanks to Canon Rebel T2i camera. The camera really did capture the night effects pretty good when compared to our older version of canon camera.
Our first day in Rome was very productive with all the places tried by ourselves without any guided tours. I was very skeptical in the beginning if we would make it to all these places all by ourselves. The city is well equipped with buses and metro and the city map indeed helped us a lot. However I really liked the transportation in Paris that was very well organized and structured than Italy. You can very well predict the timings of the bus in Paris and the duration it would take to go to next stop
Rome Trip Recommendations
Buy the 3 day Roma Pass – You can buy it online or directly purchase in Rome. Most of the hotels have this option and we purchased one from the hotel that we stayed. It’s 25 Euro per person and the pass gives free entry to 2 museums and reduced fees to rest of the museums. Plus this pass can be used for all bus & metro transportation.
All of these attractions have guided tours and we personally did not select this option. Every attraction have the audio guided tour that you can opt and save some money. Plus you can do at our ease and spend as much time at a location and don’t need to rush with the tour guide group.
All of these attractions involve lot of walking- so do not take lot of items with you during travel. Just one small backpack should help, otherwise u easily get tired carrying all of the items.
If travelling in summer, temperature actually reached 90 for us – Afternoon 2-4 was peak hours. Try to see the places in the early morning, take a break and continue ur visit late in the evening.