There comes a moment when you’ve been traveling to many new and exciting places, and you suddenly realize you’re a jaded travel snob. When you realize that during the past 6 months, you’ve created habits and affinities that, if not met, make a trip feel like a total bust. So, it’s not Rome’s fault that we hated it, it was us really.
Though we decided it wasn’t for us, it wasn’t all bad. Here are some of my favorite things about the city, peppered with a few of the things that I didn’t really love.
- We found a decent hostel with a good location, and our friendly receptionist drew us a walking tour map. When you’ve only got a day to see everything, it was an invaluable resource.
- There’s a tax for sitting outside at cafes. And sometimes you pay the tax because you just want to sit and enjoy, and a “street musician” with an accordion (worst) starts playing right next to your table and basically tells him you owe him money after he finishes.
- We didn’t throw coins in the Trevi fountain because I don’t even think we could get past all the other millions of people to do it.
- The city seemed to improve significantly in the evenings. The mass of people seemed to grow weary around sunset, so some of the biggest tourists spots were less crowded. It’s worth it to save some energy for a night tour.
- We also didn’t see the Sistine Chapel because the line was enormous. We punished ourselves later by taking the ultimate cheesy tourist photo in Pisa (can you guess what it was?).
- We did have some really dumb luck and went into St. Peter’s Basilica without waiting in line. It was really impressive (both the chapel and the lack of line).
- While traffic and tourist buses are to be expected, there was no respite. We searched for a park or even a patch of green grass to no avail. All the green grass was surrounded by spiky “keep off” fences.
- Despite our woes, we did manage to have a nice dusk picnic of fresh mozzarella and tomatoes by the Vittoriale. We were impressed by the view. I think it was our favorite moment in Rome.
- (Warning: this is my cheesy bullet point) I was so glad to be traveling with Deutscher. Despite the fact that Rome couldn’t seem to catch a break in our critical eyes, we barely stopped laughing the whole time. Friends4EVA
At the end, we both agreed that we had to see it for ourselves. It’s such a famed city that I doubt we would have ever been content if we would have skipped over it. And she does photograph pretty well.