Every time I take my first stroll along the terracotta colored and ivy-clad streets in Rome I fall in love all over again. Despite the smoldering heat (you can’t expect much else if you’re going to the Italian capital in the middle of the summer, I know) and the never-ending groups of tourists, I always manage to enjoy the city when I visit.
My trick? Waking up early and strolling around before 10am. In the early morning hours, you can discover the city and the monuments almost tourist-free.
I found myself nearly alone in front of the beautiful Trevi fountain one morning! I also wake up at this time to get some good photographs of the city before the harsh light starts casting shadows over the streets (which is any photographer’s nightmare).
After my morning stroll and a breakfast consisting of yoghurt with fresh fruit from Grano Frutta e Farina, the sun starts to get unbelievably hot and I wander around wherever I can find shade, or pop into a store with good air-conditioning. That’s always a good excuse for some shopping! An ice cream at Ciampini or Venchi is a must and Nocciola is my go-to favorite flavor.
For lunch I grab a delicious pizza slice somewhere in the neighborhood and enjoy watching the people passing by. Piazza di Navona and Campo dei Fiori never disappoints when it comes to people watching.
Following a quick siesta at home (to recharge, perhaps take a shower or two and to avoid the scorching sun) I’m out the door again, most likely walking towards Hotel de Russie. Their terrace is a little gem, right in between Piazza di Spagna and Piazza del Popolo, which is a mandatory stop for me every time I come to Rome. Their peach ice tea is just what I need to keep me from passing out due to the high temperatures.
After exploring Monti, the hip new neighborhood, the cozy streets around the Pantheon or everybody’s darling Trastevere in the afternoon, I dine at one of my favorite Roman restaurants, Tullio or Hostaria Da Pietro. The food, and their wonderful service, would alone justify a visit. I still dream about their fiori di zucchine, pasta al salmone and their pesce alla griglia. A midnight stroll back from either of these places is the perfect end to my perfect day in Rome.
- I also had the pleasure of experiencing Rome on the back of a vespa! If you want to live the Roman Holiday for real as well, check out ScooteRoma.
- Want more tips on what to do when you visits Italy’s capital? Have a look at Telegraph’s list!
Written by Carin Olsson for the HiP Paris Blog. All photos by Carin Olsson. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, or Tuscany? Check out Haven in Paris.