Welcome to Erin N Ella's Travel Blog!!

All you need to know about Eurotrips;
From budgeting tips to accommodation to food choices and places to go out (and a few other stories...)

Sit back, hold tight, (get a cuppa tea) and enjoy the linguistic ride :D

Friday, September 9, 2011

Roma - We nearly got RUN OVER, no biggie.

(For a quick summary, scroll to the final paragraph)  
No train delays this time, wooppieee :) Even so, we were exhausted as we left the train and still had to drag our suitcases over a number of cobbled streets, a draining exercise after a long travel day. Thankfully, our B&B wasn't far from the train station so we were soon put out of our misery.
*It's time for us to boast and mention that once again, we chose the best accommodation. Rose B&B is a lovely little place located 'underground' (in a basement, though we promise, it's not scary and is wayyyy better than it sounds!!) in the heart of Rome - only a 7 minute walk away from the Colosseum! Price is prettayyy cheap at about €22 a night. A sweet couple run the B&B - they provide free breakfast (albeit its not for those looking for a luxurious start to the morning - mostly cakes, toast and spreads, fruit and of course hot drinks), as well as free internet connection on the computers in the room (oh facebook, how we missed you :D). The rooms are clean and so are the bathrooms (even though they are shared). Only slight issue is that you can't be too loud at night, though that shouldn't be much of a problem for most. The kitchen facilities are great and a brilliant way to save money on meals - the supermarket is only about 8 minutes away. One night Ella and Dora made a delicious steak dinner with roast veg - proof that you can make your own mouth-watering menu without having to spend a lot of money (see top right). Such a dinner followed a serious group carb-crisis that was sparked after our concern over Myra feeling weak - after which us locas started eating more healthily by loading on our fruit, veg and protein.

--------Here comes another fellow-traveller appreciation moment: SHOUT-OUT to Bruna (the awesomely friendly Brazilian we met, who taught Erin how to say bitch in Portugese - Safada) and Izi (the most hilarious English girl with the funniest expressions and stories)---------

Myra Hydrating
A little word of advice, Rome is sweltering in summer - and the choking pollution doesn't help - (in particular in mid-July when we were there) making it difficult to sight-see, especially if you are exhausted from having gone out the night before. So perhaps if you just want to sight-see a cooler month may be a good idea (May/September) - but realistically, many people visit in summer anyway which of course is manageable - you just need to make sure you have water with you wherever you go and perhaps some snacks for energising.

Sightseeing - buy the 3 in 1 ticket for the Colosseum, Palatine and Forum (a.k.a Roman ruins) - only €7.50 for all three! You need to queue when getting it at the first location you go to, but it allows you to skip the queue at the other places. Be warned: queues are long, so try and go as it opens or just before! You absolutely cannot miss out on these sights! They are a great way for you to try and imagine just what it was like to have lived in ancient Rome.
- Vatican City State - obviously VERY LONG QUEUES (because everyone wants to go!) so keep a full day free for this. It might be extra busy on Wednesdays because that is when the Pope usually comes out (Turned out he was away on the Wednesday we went :(...) We suggest beginning with the museums because if you go to the Basilica first you may be too tired to walk around the museum after. Entry isn't expensive at €8 for the museums. Have an EARLY NIGHT before so you at least have some energy to walk around and soak in the culture. Queuing may be long and tedious, but it certainly is worth it - countless works of art from paintings, to artifacts to sculptures. Even if you are not religious or are an atheist, this is still worth seeing!! Also, it is possible to send a postcard to family/friends from the Vatican City so look out for that. Word of advice, bring a sandwich/packed lunch for the day as many of the restaurants inside the museums are very expensive, and also not the most amazing! (Prices for hot drinks are quite standard though). Entry to the Basilica (largest church in the world) is free. No doubt this is also a must - the awe-inspiring Late Renaissance church is a beautiful masterpiece not to be missed.
- Trevi Fountains - also an absolute must - they are stunning! "It is the largest Baroque (European Architecture) fountain in the city and one of the most famous fountains in the world." A lovely place to sit and have lunch.
- The Pantheon is also gorgeous - one of ancient Rome's best preserved buildings. It was "commissioned by Marcus Agrippa as a temple to all the gods of Ancient Rome, and rebuilt by Emperor Hadrian in about 126 AD."
- We highly recommend going on walk in the evening, perhaps to the Spanish steps (dominated by the Trinità dei Monti church at the top) were you can just relax and soak in the warm summer's feel - maybe even get an ice cream :O.
- Walk around the city centre and find a nice place for lunch.
- If you are staying in a central location just buy the €1 metro ticket - its a one stop ticket but if you won't be using it too often its not worth buying a more expensive one.

Food -
- Gelato!! mmmmmm ICE CREAMMMMMM --> you must visit an ice-cream place called Flori, they serve divine home-made great-quality ice-cream.
Penis Pasta with White Sauce....
-Erin and Myra carried a bag of Italian pasta all the way from Rome, through Croatia and Amsterdam to London - a real challenge with such a fragile item. Look out for cool pasta bags, they have a million different shapes. Our personal favourite was, of course, penis pasta.

Dora and Ella having Black Absinthe!
We didn't go out enough in Rome to have a great idea of what the nightlife was like, BUT the pub-scene is prettay awesome. As everywhere else we visited in Europe drinking only starts at 11/12 - so for Lonodners used to pre-drinks at 9/10, forget it! You can chill till later and start getting ready when you want - clubs only peak after 1 really. There are countless clubs dotted around Rome, perhaps its worth asking the people working at the place you are staying at for the best nightlife. Some bars offer REALLY CHEAP drinks - keep your eyes peeled for €1 shots!!


  1. There is so much sight-seeing in this exciting city!!! It's not difficult to find out what to do, just ask for a map or do a quick search online, though none will be as descriptive of local lifestyle as ours ;). Top of the list: Colosseum, Trevi Fountains, Vatican City.
  2. For nightlife - go to the place where loads of the clubs/bars are located and go on a mini pub-crawl with your friends - you will meet loads of cool strangers :D
  3. Food - need we say it? Indulge in the best ice-cream, pizza and pasta while you can.
    *All quotes sources are from Wikipedia