Saturday, January 04, 2020

One Night in Rome

Rome, Italy
Travel Period: December 2018

What would you do if you have one night to spend in Rome?


Bernini's Barcaccia fountain on Piazza di Spagna.

Hmm, it would be difficult to choose because there are so many great places to see in the city...

I was in Rome for work and was planning to have dinner in the nearby suburb or at the hotel I was staying in. However, the hotel's restaurant was exclusively booked for an event. I also learned that they have a shuttle bus that goes to the city center which includes a re-tour ticket of the metro. Things seemed to have fallen into its place for me that night. So I bought the shuttle ride and in half an hour I was on the way to the ancient city.

[To read the rest of the post and see more pictures, click the READ MORE link below]

Rome greeted me with horrible potholes on the roads and traffic. It's rush hour and everyone can't wait to get to their destination. I couldn't wait to get off the shuttle bus and get on the metro.


No agenda in mind, I made a last-minute decision to go to take the metro ride to the Piazza di Spagna. It's a lively area with many people, mostly tourists, so I will not be disappointed. There are always people loitering on the Spanish Steps and around the Barcaccia fountain. I can people watch.

The area is also home to the Via dei Condotti high street. I could walk up and down the road and technically "window" shop. There's a Furla shop on the corner from the Spanish Steps if I remember it right as well. It would be a good excuse to check out their new bag designs.


The Spanish Steps.


Rome's High Street, Via dei Condotti.


Oh dear, I am not sure if Gucci is pushing the right buttons for me. 


Well, I couldn't resist, I had to buy some grilled chestnuts. Yummy. I am thinking to myself -- this is my starter.


Opulence: A whole building covered in twinkling lights. 


There are so many nice places to eat in Rome.


This is not a shoe art installation. It is actually a shop (with the prices of shoes below each shoe).

I thought of taking a walk to the famous Trevi Fountain. It has been years since I have last visited the Baroque fountain that graced in many Hollywood movies. I have also heard stories about how crazily touristy the place is. Honestly, I am not sure if I wanted to see the fountain or the tourist swarming around it. Both perhaps. It's a bit silly but I am curious.

However, my stomach got along the way. I passed by this restaurant called Sugo and they have the dish I am thinking of indulging for this evening. I was already getting hungry, so I skipped the walk to the Trevi Fountain and went inside the restaurant instead.


Earlier in the day, I had a chat with my Italian colleague. If he knew I was coming, he would have treated me out to dinner. But he told me that wherever you eat in Italy, you will always eat well. I took that advice to heart and didn't worry if I will go inside a touristy restaurant. Well, I am sure I will eat well! Although I did not expect it, I indeed ate well.

I probably can summarise my trip to Rome, apart from the work-related part, as a quick Italian savory jaunt.


The server promised me this half a liter bottle will do wonders for the seafood pasta dish I ordered. Well, I am afraid to say that I have to give it to him, he was right. This meal, the Spaghetti Marinara and this little bottle of Pinot Grigio were one of the best I have had in the last weeks.

I think I need to visit Italy every now and then =)


After this delicious meal, I was ready to continue my walk. I need to get to the Trevi Fountain as it is getting a bit late now. The shuttle bus driver will be picking me up in an hour and a half at the Piramide station. I still have enough time but I do not want to be rushing.

My life tips are... take things slow when enjoying and when travelling. Stop and smell the flowers on the road. In Rome, you have to stop, look and admire the lovely architecture and history. Rome is literally like an open-air museum!


The magnificent Trevi Fountain.


In reality, it is very difficult to take a picture of the fountain without people. I got a bit lucky on the first (above) photo, but that is a small angle focus.

In the meantime, while I was surveying the area around the Trevi Fountain, this pastry - bakery - caffe - gelateria in one shop distracted me. The food counter was filled with lovely goodies, and before I knew it, I have a big box in my hands, as I walk back towards Piazza di Spagna.

And I have a huge grin in my face, too.


Sweet pastries at Caffe Accademia near Trevi Fountain.



And this is my loot! I am bringing them back to the Netherlands. 

Here are a few more pictures I took as I walk back towards Piazza di Spagna to take the metro to Piramide where I will be waiting for the shuttle bus.


Mini markets selling produce and fresh fruits are very typical in Italy. They are even open late. 


Steep escalators in the metro.


Pyramid of Cestius and the Porta San Paolo. The pyramid was built circa 12 BC... really old.


The shuttle bus driver arrived as promised at the same place and on time. I was the only passenger the whole time so it felt like I had an exclusive excursion to Rome.

Back at the hotel.... I did some last-minute stuff for my meeting in the morning.


Then I had the last one for the road at the airport. I need some more Italian food love before stepping inside the airplane back to Holland. I found this lunch cafe in the middle of the busy ramp pathway at the airport. When I saw the marinated octopus in the glass counter, I knew right away that I will eat well for lunch. No airplane food, please.

So simple yet so divine. This was a super delicious fresh octopus salad lunch. *Sigh* My taste buds are remembering this very tasty meal and I am salivating now.


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Happy Travels! Enjoy Life =)

2 comments:

  1. Hello Jo, Oh how I wish I can turn back the hands of time and travel like you do. Alas, I am too old to travel and restrained by aching hip everytime I walk. Nonetheless I am content to read your travel journal and pretend I was there too. Life is too short enjoy every bit of it with the Dutchman!

    Clarita

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Clarita, I am beginning to have those aches too, haha! To be honest, I do not have that much of travel lust anymore than before. Perhaps because I have travelled to so many places already. With my job now as well, I have to travel every now and then, so the novelty has slowly worn off. But I try my best to see the good out of travelling these days.I need to blog more often though and reflect on my travels.

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Hi, thank you for taking time.

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