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We are cruising out of Rome on Nov 6th 2017. We will be in Rome from Nov 2 to when leave that AM on the 6th for the cruise. We have been very lax in doing our homework for our time in Rome. We have booked a hotel (Collina Inn, Via Collina 24, Rome), which, I think is some where in central Rome.

Anyway, if we want to tour on our own,

are there certain things that we need to book pre arrival?

What is the best way to go about touring the city?

Will it be very crowded in the beginning of Nov?

Do we need reservations to see certain sites and do we still have time to book these?

One last question for now (I'm sure there will be more), we really do not wish to struggle with luggage coming from the airport onto a train or bus. Are there shared shuttles, car services, airport vans etc. that will take you from the airport to your hotel for a reasonable price. We have booked a van to take us to the port, from Rome, for about $75. What are our options from the airport to our hotel?

Thanks for any, and all, info. It will be greatly appreciated.

Cheers

Len

 

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I did a quick Google Maps search of your hotel; I wouldn't call it Central Rome. You'll have a good 30 minute walk downhill to the Centro Storico. I've stayed at the Westin, on Via Veneto, and that was a good 20 minute walk. The Collina Inn is uphill further from there, kind of in between Roma Termini and Via Veneto area.

 

I cannot help with transportation, sorry. I've done the train in from the airport every time but one (I used the private transportation my hotel, the Cavalieri, arranged for me).

 

To do things on your own is pretty easy. You may purchase tickets in advance for most of the major tourist attractions - Colosseum, Forum, Palantine Hill, Vatican Museums. Definitely recommend doing this as it saves you from waiting in line for over an hour to get in.

Rick Steves has some good walking "tours" in his Rome book. Anyone willing to get out and "do Rome" on her own may easily transit Rome and have a most enjoyable time, spending time where you want, finding a hidden gem not on the usual tour route, ducking into a restaurant that calls to you... Enjoy!!!

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There is a fixed fare for taxis of €48 from the airport into the city, so if you look for a private car service I wouldn't pay any more than €10 above the taxi fare. Your hotel just makes it within the area included for this fixed fare.

 

Rome taxi info and fares here, on the city's web site: https://www.comune.roma.it/PCR/resources/cms/documents/tariffario_taxi_luglio_2012.pdf

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If seeing the Vatican museums (which include the Sistine Chapel) is important to you, do purchase those tickets in advance directly from the vatican here: http://www.museivaticani.va/content/museivaticani/en/visita-i-musei/scegli-la-visita/musei-e-collezioni.html

 

You can purchase entry tickets only, or you can purchase entry plus a tour.

 

As for the Colosseum, unless you want to visit there on your arrival day I would wait and buy that ticket in person. The lines at the Colosseum are always bad but there are two other ticket offices, for Palatine Hill (on via di San Gregorio) or the Roman Forum (on via dei Fori Imperiali, near the intersection of Via Cavour. You can stop by any time you are in the area and buy the tickets, they don't become activated until you enter one of the sites (these are combo tickets good for all three sites, the only way you can buy them).

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Get a Rick Steves Rome book.

 

We did similar to you back in April. We booked a private car from the airport to our hotel through our hotel. Email your hotel to see if this is a possibility for you. It sure was nice seeing our name on a placard with our driver standing there after coming off a long flight.

We booked a skip the line Vatican tour before hand, which I highly recommend. Otherwise lines are very long.

As euro cruiser suggested, we purchased the Colosseum/Palatine Hill combo tickets at the Forum entrance on the day we wanted to tour. Lines were short there and even shorter at the Palatine Hill entrance.

 

We rode the subway everywhere once in Rome. Very convenient. It helped to have Google maps on my phone. Sometimes I got turned around coming out of a subway station. It also helped me navigate back to the nearest station.

 

Oh, and don't miss the aqueducts. One of the highlights of the trip for me (I'm not into art/sculpture that much).

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Thank you all so much for the great suggestions. If there are any more, just keep them coming.

Is the Rome Pass something I would be interested in?

I read on this forum about buying tickets to the lower level of the Coliseum that people had to wake in the middle of the night to buy. Is this something that is a 'can't miss' and why is it so difficult?

We read somewhere that the water has been turned off on many of the fountains in Rome because of a severe drought. Is this still true of, say Trevi Fountain?

Again, all this great info is sincerely appreciated.

Cheers

Len

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We read somewhere that the water has been turned off on many of the fountains in Rome because of a severe drought. Is this still true of, say Trevi Fountain?

The Trevi is not turned off & it has been restored - lovely! Rome is my favorite city in europe - hope that you have a wonderful visit.

BTW - if you are interested, other churches that are free and worth a visit for incredible artistic works are:

Santa Maria Della Vittoria - to see the spectacular Bernini masterpiece "The Ecstasy of St. Teresa" (an easy 2 block walk from the Republicca metro stop or short stroll from piazza Barberini)

San Pietro in Vincoli - holds the magnificent unfinished mausoleum of Pope Julius II with Michangelo's Moses sculpture (metro to Cavour - cross the street, walk up the stairs & turn right)

Santa Maria sopra Minerva - Michelangelo's sculpture of the Risen Christ (located behind the Pantheon, which is also free)

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The Trevi is not turned off & it has been restored - lovely! Rome is my favorite city in europe - hope that you have a wonderful visit.

BTW - if you are interested, other churches that are free and worth a visit for incredible artistic works are:

Santa Maria Della Vittoria - to see the spectacular Bernini masterpiece "The Ecstasy of St. Teresa" (an easy 2 block walk from the Republicca metro stop or short stroll from piazza Barberini)

San Pietro in Vincoli - holds the magnificent unfinished mausoleum of Pope Julius II with Michangelo's Moses sculpture (metro to Cavour - cross the street, walk up the stairs & turn right)

Santa Maria sopra Minerva - Michelangelo's sculpture of the Risen Christ (located behind the Pantheon, which is also free)

 

It is the public drinking fountains that are temporarily turned off. Too bad - that water is very tasty. But, drought conditions prevail..

An absolute YES on Santa Maria sopra Minerva!! This is my favorite church anywhere. It looks so plain on the outside, but inside, it is a great example of a Gothic church. It is actually Rome's only Gothic church. Besides that Michelangelo sculpture, the frescoed ceilings are beautiful, and there are many more sculptures to admire. If you are into Catholic history, the sarcophagus of St. Catherine of Siena (minus her head) is enshrined in a glass case on the altar. I always plan a little visit to this church when I'm in Rome. I love to walk around it's interior, then take a seat in one of the pews and just reflect for awhile. I'm not even Catholic.

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It has been mentioned on our roll call that tickets to the Vatican and Sistine chapel are now available for the beginning of Nov, just when we will be there. What would be best an audio tour or with a guide?

Does this tour include St Peters Basilica?

Cheers

Len

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We have booked a hotel (Collina Inn, Via Collina 24, Rome), which, I think is some where in central Rome.

 

It's nowhere near central....anything. I would seriously suggest changing hotels. There's nothing wrong with it, but it's not near anything you say you want to see.

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It's nowhere near central....anything. I would seriously suggest changing hotels. There's nothing wrong with it, but it's not near anything you say you want to see.

 

 

My DW booked it using some points we had. I believe it was for a non refundable price. Is it near any sort of public transportation like the train? I thought I read that a station wasn't very far away. If so, that would be OK. (I HOPE).

 

Cheers

 

Len

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We are going to be in Rome on the first Sunday of November and from things I've read, several places and Museums offer free admission on that day, like the Coliseum and Forum. Would this be something we should be thinking of taking advantage of, or would we be better going another day and probably avoiding huge crowds.?

Cheers

Len

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  • 2 weeks later...
We are going to be in Rome on the first Sunday of November and from things I've read, several places and Museums offer free admission on that day, like the Coliseum and Forum. Would this be something we should be thinking of taking advantage of, or would we be better going another day and probably avoiding huge crowds.?

 

 

 

Cheers

 

Len

 

 

 

 

We went to the colosseum on the first Sunday in September 2015. We arrived about 2pm. It was busy but the line moved quickly. It was busy inside but not uncomfortably so. The Forum was a lot quieter.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

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We went to the colosseum on the first Sunday in September 2015. We arrived about 2pm. It was busy but the line moved quickly. It was busy inside but not uncomfortably so. The Forum was a lot quieter.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

 

Thanks for that info. We are still tinkering about what and when to do this part of our adventure, but reading your post may sway us to take a shot at it.

Cheers

Len

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Thanks for that info. We are still tinkering about what and when to do this part of our adventure, but reading your post may sway us to take a shot at it.

Cheers

Len

 

 

I try to avoid the free entries whenever possible. However, I wouldn't NOT see something just because of a free entry if it was my only chance or if it was the best fit with my itinerary. (That said, you could not drag me to the Vatican museums on free entry day -- it is a miserable experience....)

 

Look at it this way -- the Colosseum was basically built to hold a crowd of people, just like a modern stadium. Perhaps it will give you a better sense of the place if it is full, as originally intended. Just a thought. :confused:

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