I wanted to share with you what we did on our recent child free holiday to Rome, Italy.
Before I get into the details of our city break to the Italian capital, I’m going to give you a little backstory.
My husband and I first went to Rome together in February 2006, we’d known each other only six weeks. It was most definitely a whirlwind romance and I suppose you could say it sealed the deal.
We’ve always wanted to go back and this Christmas, he bought me the trip away. He’d even organised my parents’ involvement (the girls would stay with them) and with a little help from my mum, had sorted everything.
It’s fair to say I was blown away and tears were shed on Christmas day, I couldn’t believe it, I’d had no idea.
Before I knew it the Easter holidays were upon us and it was time to go.
What follows is a little round-up of what we did. It probably goes without saying we did some of the touristy stuff, but we’d done a lot of it last time. My favourite is still the Pantheon though.
Side note- Rome’s peak tourism season starts at Easter and having been twice before “off season” I really noticed the crowds this time.
Also, last time I went was before I discovered I have Dairy and Egg allergies, so this time I was a little worried about being able to eat, after all, it’s all mozzarella and gelato, right?
Ginger Sapori e Salute
This place came up in my research pre-trip. There are two branches in central Rome, we ended up at the one near Piazza Navona. Ginger focuses on healthy food, using products that are in season. Many of the dishes on the menu are in fact raw and 80% of the dishes are plant-based. We stopped here for a light lunch and the salad I ordered came in the biggest bowl, it was more like a mixing bowl for baking!! Check them out.
Babington’s Tea Rooms
This one was a total spur of the moment stop off. Situated right next to the Spanish Steps and priced accordingly we decided to treat ourselves to a fancy half hour. It did feel very special and despite just having tea we were treated like royalty. More here.
Grezzo Raw Chocolate
Found this online as part of my research and boy was it worth seeking out. Everything is raw, which automatically means its vegan and therefore free from dairy and eggs. I had a three scoop pot of gelato, hazelnut, chocolate and strawberry and D had a two scoop pot and a smoothie. The lady serving in here was so lovely and helpfully spoke brilliant English. We ended up buying a selection of the handmade chocolates too to take back to the hotel with us. I’m not exaggerating here either but these were A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!! I’ve just seen they do mail order so off to investigate if they’ll post to me. Find out more about Grezzo in Rome here.
Original Language film nights
It turned out that our hotel was a ten-minute walk from a cinema that shows films in their original language. The Italians are world renown (in a good way) for their dubbing so it’s fairly rare to be able to watch something that isn’t dubbed. We almost felt like locals spending an evening at the cinema. We saw Ready Player One, by the way, which is a lot of fun.
Details on cinemas showing films in their original language in Rome here.
Art & Exhibitions
If you’ve ever been to Rome you’ll know you are literally falling over sculptures, fountains, churches, ancient ruins and a whole manner of historical landmarks whichever way you turn. There are still strong links to the art world here and as it’s a capital city it gets many touring exhibitions too. We went to Complesso del Vittoriano to see an exhibition of Terry O’Neill’s photography.
There were some brilliant shots of David Bowie and the Rolling Stones and many other icons from the sixties and seventies. Whilst there we saw the artist Liu Bolin’s exhibition too. Known as the invisible man, he expertly blends into backgrounds. For these exhibitions visit here.
We also visited the Museum and Crypt of the Capuchin Friars which although sounded interesting in the guidebook it was actually rather morbid in real life. The crypt is completely decorated with skeletons. I’m still in two minds whether to recommend it to you or not, but here’s a bit more about it, if it’s sparked an interest.
Finally, the Keats Shelly House is on the opposite side of the Spanish Steps to Babington’s and it’s a small but perfectly formed museum where the staff are incredibly knowledgeable about all things Romanticism. It’s worth the small entrance fee, here’s the link.
Wandering the beautiful streets of Rome
This is an activity in its own league in Rome. Its’s just so photogenic!
So it turned out avoiding my allergens in Rome wasn’t that hard. I’ve now become hooked on good coffee again though…
My final thought is to make sure you walk everywhere, wearing comfortable shoes of course.
Have you been to Rome?