We arrived to Rome on Thursday afternoon. We walked a lot of the way from the train station to our Airbnb in Trastevere before getting on a bus, which was much faster. The whole way it looked like rain and by the time we got to the Airbnb, it started pouring. We ordered food in that night and spent the evening at the apartment.
We chose to stay in the area of Trastevere because it was our favorite part of Rome when we visited on our honeymoon. There were lots of great restaurants, bars, and since we were there for only 2 nights, we wanted to be in the area where we wanted to spend the most time.
The next morning we had booked a free food walking tour in the neighborhood of Trastevere. This may be one of the best food tours we have ever been on. The tour guide went on the same food tour we have been on in New York, decided Rome needed something similar, and created it. The tour was free, but you paid for a sample (or not) at each of the stops. Everything was excellent! We sampled Italian cookies, cheese, lasagna, suppli al telefono, porchetta, and gelato. The tour was informative and everyone was friendly.
When we finished the food tour, we decided to walk into the center of Rome to go to the Pantheon. This was one of the main sites we weren't able to go in when we were there in 2019, so we made it a priority for this trip.
The line was quick to enter and the building is very large inside. It has been used as a Roman temple, church (what it currently is), and meeting place since ancient Roman times. The most unique part of the building is the large circular hole in the roof that allows sunlight through. It is open, so it allows rain in and there are drains in the floor to get rid of the water. We were there less than 30 minutes, but I'm glad we got to see this ancient site.
We walked around the city a bit before heading back to the Airbnb to hang out for the afternoon.
For dinner that night, we went to Tonnarello. You cannot make reservations, so you must join the line and wait. Thankfully, the line moved pretty quickly and we enjoyed our pasta and drinks.
This was the view from the roof of the apartment-there was a small balcony with chairs that looked over the street.
On our honeymoon, we went in the Vatican Museums, but did not get to go in St. Peter's Basilica. The line was too long and it was too hot in the middle of July. So, I was determined to see it this time. We ran out of time on Thursday and Friday, so we had to wake up early on Saturday morning to go before we checked out of the Airbnb. We left before 7AM and walked the mile or so to get to Vatican City. We stopped for cappuccinos along the way and drank them as we walked. The city was so peaceful that early in the morning.
We joined the security line that had already formed and began listening to the Rick Steves podcast that added commentary to our visit. By the time we got through security and began walking inside, it had warmed up and was nice and sunny. You can see the chairs set up in the picture of Brennan and I below-there was a free concert by Andre Botticelli the next evening.
The inside of the basilica is incredible. It is ornate, detailed, and inspiring from all angles. The commentary told us that it was designed to feel large and small at the same time-people are supposed to feel comfortable in the side chapels but the entire basilica can hold 60,000 standing worshipers at a time. Thankfully, there were not that many people on the day we visited.
Since we went in 2019, I have said that Rome is my favorite city. Our second visit did not disappoint and I love any time we get to spend in Italy. Having a few nights in Rome to explore was a great way to end an amazing week in Italy.
We're Brennan & Megan
Since June 2022, we have been traveling to learn more about ourselves and the world around us.