Guide to Rome, Italy
Your need-to-know guide to Rome
Published 07 August 2008 in Destination Guides
What: Capital of Italy
Location: Situated on the River Tiber between the Apennine Mountains and the Tyrrhenian Sea, in the middle of the Italian peninsula - halfway along Italy's western coast, about 20km (12m) inland.
Time Zone: GMT +1
Weights and Measures: Metric
Electricity: 220V 50Hz - standard two pin plug.
Tipping: Service is usually included in restaurant bills but Italians tip waiters unless the service was bad. 10% is the norm.
Weather: Rome has a mild climate
Fiumicino "Leonardo da Vinci" (FCO) This is Rome's major airport. To get to central Rome use the Express Train to Termini railway station (25-30 minutes). It runs every 30 minutes.
Ciampino (CIA) To get to the city you must first take a Cotral bus (every half hour) and then subway A from Anagnina station. Also available is the Terravision Shuttle in conjunction with Ryanair and Easy-Jet flights.
Entry: A valid passport is required.
Getting Around Rome:
Buses/Trams: Run 5am to midnight. The bus is ideal for visiting the main tourist sites. Pick up a map of bus routes from ATAC (city bus company) booth outside Stazione Termini. Bus tickets cost 1 euro and are good for any ATAC city bus, tran and one metro ride. It must be used within 75 minutes of the first use. Also this must be stamped by the machines at the back entrace of the bus or tram. Inspectors do check. Tickets can be bought at any terminus, news-stand, tobacconist and bar.
There are also special price full day tickets (1 euro) called BIG. These can be used on the Metro too. A five-day ticket (CIS 16 euros) and monthly passes. All are available
Taxi: Official Taxis are white and though plentiful its easier to find one at a taxi stop rather than to hail one. They are quite expensive and levy charges for luggage on Sundays and after 10pm.
OVERVIEW Of Rome
With nearly three millenia of history, Rome, The Eternal City, is unbeatable when it comes to antiquity and historical sites: The opulent Vatican, The Forum from where Julius Ceasar ruled and the monumental Colosseum, not to mention the temples, basilicas, churches, palazzi, parks, exquisite fountains and museums. With so much to see, it's easy to see why Rome wasn't built in a day!
Only in Rome could you have an audience with the pope, shop in the market place and sip coffee in the shadows of the Pantheon and still have time for a siesta in the afternoon.
Conveniently, most of the major sights are within walking distance from the central railway station, Stazione Termini, so it is quite possible to walk to the Forum and then the Colloseum and Vatican in one stint.
The historic centre, centro storico, located between Via del Corso and the Tever (River Tiber), comprises a labyrinth of twisty, cobbled streets where you will find buildings from the Renaissance period, baroque churches, palaces, the romantic Piazza Navona, the sweeping Spanish steps the world-famous Trevi fountain.
Rome also offers fantastic designer shopping, jewellery, antiques or ancient markets. You may find yourself having to choose between sight-seeing or shopping.
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