THE CITY STEEPED IN NEARLY THREE THOUSAND YEARS OF HISTORY

ROME

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    Italy's capital city of Rome is a city steeped in nearly three thousand years of history. Beyond this, the city has an extra importance given to it by the Vatican, which doubles as both the smallest country in the world and the capital of the Catholic universe. Rome is known as "City of seven hills," "the eternal city," "Caput Mundi (the capital of the world)", "City of love," and "La Dolce Vita (The sweet life).

    Italy's capital city of Rome is a city steeped in nearly three thousand years of history. Beyond this, the city has an extra importance given to it by the Vatican, which doubles as both the smallest country in the world and the capital of the Catholic universe. Rome is known as "City of seven hills," "the eternal city," "Caput Mundi (the capital of the world)", "City of love," and "La Dolce Vita (The sweet life)."

    To get from the airport to the city center is 32km. You can take a taxi for about €43, Terravision or Shuttle bus for €4-6, COTRAL buses for €5, the Leonardo Express train for €14, or the commuter train (FR1 is €8, but then you have to take the metro in order to get to the city center). Inside the city you can use motorbikes, segways, bicycles or you can just take the metro, buses, or the tram. (For all public services you can pay €1.5 for a 100 minute ticket, a day ticket for €6, a three day ticket for €16.5, or a week ticket for €24). One of the best ways to see the city is with Hop on-Hop off tourist buses. The Archeobus Ancient Roma line of 110 Open goes to all the touristic points in the city. If you want to pay less for both transportation and entrance fees you can buy a Roma Pass for €34 or a Roma Combo Pass for €69.90 (the passes are good for 3 days but they don't include transportation to or from the airport.)

    Because Rome is one of the world's most popular tourist destinations, it has no shortage of options for accommodation. Staying in the city center is the easiest way to stay close to tourist spots, but it tends to be a little more expensive as well. These are some of the more stylish hotels in Rome: Hotel De Russie, Hotel Hassler, Portrait Suites, Hotel Forum, Hotel Eden, Gran Melia Rome, Villa Spalletti Trivelli, The St. Regis Rome, Palazzo Manfredi - Relais & Chateaux, and The First Luxury Art Hotel. For people who want mid-range hotels: Palm Gallery Hotel, Residenza Cellini, Albergo del Senato, Teatropace 33 or the Radisson SAS. And for tourists operating on a budget: Welrome Hotel, Villa San Lorenzo Maria Hotel, Hotel Lodi, Casa Banzo, Casa Il Rosario, Casa di Sant'Anna or the Hostel Colors.

    The Coliseum, the Pantheon, the Foro Romano, the Trevi Fountain, the Campo Dei Fiori, Piazza di Spagna and the Spanish Steps, the Vatikan and St. Peter's Basilica, as well as the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel, Saint Paul's outside the Walls Basilica, San Giovanni Cathedral, Santa Maria Maggiore, San Clemente, Castel Sant’Angelo, Villa Borghese, Piazza Navona, Compidoglio Square and the Capitoline Museum, Rome's old city of Trastevere, Via dei Condotti, Via del Corso and the Via Veneto all form part of the amazing sights Rome has to offer. Also, Piazza Colonna, Piazza Venezia and the National Monument to Victor Emmanuel II, the Palatine Hill, the Aventine Hill, Circus Maximus, the baths of Caracalla, Santa Maria is Cosmedin Basilica and the Bocca della Verita Statue (the mouth of truth), the Gianicolo Hill, Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (the fountain of four rivers), San Luigi dei Francesi, the Tiber and the Isola Tiberina (Tiberina Island), the bridges of Rome (Ponte Cestio, Ponte Nomentano, etc.), Domus Aurea di Nerone, Palazzo Spada, the tomb of the Capuchin monks, Pincia Gardens, Savello Park and the Parco degli Acquedotti are all great places to visit. Some of the more important museums include Villa Fiulia National Etruscan Museum, The National Museum of Art, Galleria Doria Pamphilj, the MAXXI Museum, Ara Pacis and the Galleria d'Arte Antica da Roma.

    From jewelry to clothing and art to antiques, Rome is known all the world over as one of the capitals of fashion and has some of the cheaper deals you'll find anywhere in the world. The main center of fashion in Rome is Via Condotti and its surrounding areas. All of the top brands of the world are centered right around Via Condotti and Via Babuino, though you can find some more economic options on around Via del Corso and Galleria Alberto Sordi. You can find some unusual sorts of things, as well as vintage boutiques around Via del Governo Vecchio. For shopping in Rome you can also find things in Prati/San Pietro, San Giovanni, Monti and San Lorenzo. Or maybe try Campo dei Fiori, Euroma2 and Cinecitta Due for shopping malls or for things you can only find in Rome you can try La Rinascente. Outside of the city Castel Romano has an outlet for some of the more famous designer brands. Soon another outlet called Valmontone should hit the streets. Antiques are also fairly prominent, in particular around Giulia, Margutta, Banchi Vecchi and Coronari. In Trastevere there's a flea market on Sundays in Porta Portese.

    While wandering around the Via Condotti, you can take the time to stop at the Antico Caffe Greco, where names like Goethe, Gogol, Stendhal, Lord Byron, Liszt, or Wagner all once sat. Or walk along the Via Veneto to Fellini's favorite stop, the Doney Cafe. Kick back and relax, have a cup of coffee, and watch the hordes of people passing you by. Discover Trastevere, the cafes and trattorias there are great places to hang out. For great views you can head to the top of any of the 7 hills, or take a boat along the Tiber. Is there something you've been holding inside you for a while that you just want to let you? Let the statues of Rome speak for you! (In the 16th century people started posting complaints or jokes about the popes and city leaders on statues. The Pasquino statue is among these). Are you not sure about the honesty of your travel companions? Take them to the Bocca della Verita and get the truth out of them! (When someone puts their hand inside its mouth, it will bite them if they lie) All such myths and legends are still living in today's Rome. Go to the Auditorium, or Teatro dell'Opera di Roma or Teatro di Marcello for a concert or operas. In the summer, the Estate Romana Festival has tons of things for you to see. For those who are interested in football, the AS Roma and SS Lazio derby is great entertainment in the Olympic Stadium. There are great cafes and restaurants all over the city. Trastevere and Testaccio tend to have a bit more night life compared to other regions of the city.

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