The Italian capital Rome hardly has its equal in terms of history and sights. The city has existed for more than 3,000 years, and is today one of the most popular destinations in the world. A city break in Rome is one of the things that all travelers should treat themselves to. Here you can read about what you need to bring with you, where you should live, and much more.
Rome – old but still lively
According to DigoPaul, the Italian capital Rome is primarily known for its well-preserved history and a huge number of sights. As one of Europe’s largest capitals, the city is also very lively, but can also offer intimate streets that take you back to the Renaissance. Apart from famous tourist attractions such as the Colosseum and the Vatican, you can enjoy good food and dessert here, with everything from traditional Italian dishes such as pizza and pasta to the famous ice cream sold along the streets of the big city.
Rome is prettiest when it thrives
Rome is home to over 2.7 million Italians, and has been a very important city for several millennia. Several of the buildings that are still found in Rome are on the list of world cultural heritage, but the city can also offer a lovely and warm summer climate which means that Norwegians usually travel here in the summer.
However, the tourist season is most active in spring and autumn, as the temperatures in these months are more comfortable while Rome is very beautiful when it starts to bloom. Rome is well suited for all types of tourists and it is especially popular among couples to take a romantic weekend trip in the Italian capital.
Travel to Rome
Getting to Rome is rarely a problem regardless of the season, even though most flights depart directly from Oslo Airport in the spring and autumn. If you order well in advance, it does not have to cost the shirt either.
As of this writing, both SAS and Norwegian fly directly to Fiumicino Airport (also called Leonardo da Vinci Airport). Alitalia has also used to have direct flights, but not as of today. However, it is not uncommon for both Alitalia and some low-cost carriers to set up direct routes during the holiday season.
Rome is also a destination to which there are good deals on package tours.
The flight takes about 3 hours and 5 minutes when you fly directly, and about 4.5 hours with one stopover, if you have a full flap with the connection.
How to get from the airport to the center of Rome
Which means of transport you should choose to and from the airport depends on where your hotel is located. Here are the best options:
- There are local trains from the airport every 15 minutes during rush hour, until approximately 23:00 in the evening. The train takes 25 minutes to the station in Trastevere, a few minutes more to Ostiense, and about 50 minutes to the station in Tiburtina. These are the three relevant stations if you live in the city center.
- There is also an express train between the airport and Roma Termini, the main train station. Then you arrive not far from Monti or Villa Borghese. The express train runs every half hour until almost midnight, and takes about 30 minutes.
- There are several companies that have airport buses to and from the city center. Which routes they run depends on the company. The three largest are SIT Airport Bus, TAM and Terravision Shuttles. In addition, many of the largest hotels have their own shuttle buses.
- You can take a taxi from the airport to the city center for fixed rates. The airport taxis operate with zones. Each zone has its own fixed price, with different additions in relation to the time of day, and in relation to whether the trip is on a weekday or a public holiday. Assume that the price is about 50 Euro. The trip takes about 45 minutes if you are going to a hotel in the city center.
- If you use public transport, you must expect that it may take time to get there, depending on where you are going to live. You save a few kroner, but will probably have to switch to the metro or tram at some point.
It is safe to drink tap water in Rome, but it is not recommended for Norwegian tourists for anything other than brushing their teeth because they are not used to the bacteria in the water.
Bring a European health insurance card that you get from NAV. Since Italy is a member of the EU, you have the same right as the Italians to medical treatment through Norway’s membership in the EEA. However, you will have to pay the deductibles, and any medicines from the pharmacy itself. This is one of several reasons why you should have your own travel insurance.
Security in Rome
Rome is a relatively safe city to holiday in, but with almost three million inhabitants and flocks of tourists, it is also an attractive market for filth and debris.
- Pickpockets– There is a relatively high risk of pickpocketing compared to at home. Take special care when you are in the most vulnerable tourist areas, such as the Trevi Fountain and on buses with many passengers. In and around train stations and metro stations are also favorite places for those with long fingers.
- Street Scams– There can be quite a few street scammers in Rome. These operate where tourists travel most. Typical things to be warned about are people who want to “help you with your luggage”, people who sell “real gold”, and fake signature campaigns and fundraisers. Also pay attention to fake guides and tour companies on the street that arrange tours and such, for example to the Vatican City.
- Taxi fraud– You should avoid taxis with unknown markings, which are strategically parked near sights and where tourists travel. These can be pirate taxis that specialize in charging sky-high prices for even short trips. Use well-known companies, and if necessary, ask the hotel or restaurant to book a taxi for you.
- Violence and robbery– Rome is not particularly vulnerable when it comes to more serious crime, but it happens more here than we are used to from home. If you are fairly sober, stay in busy areas, and not too naive, it usually goes just fine.