Why Rome, You Ask ~ Come See For Yourself

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Amazing Rome. There is no one like you….Sounds like the beginnings of a song. But Rome demands its place as the Eternal City with all of its multi dimensional aspects of life over thousands of years. She has an old yet elegant presence about her that is difficult to ignore. And for those who are willing to let her take them on a journey through the depths of her soul and afterward rise up again to meet Rome of today, you will be in for an unforgettable experience.

Follow along as I introduce you to some of my favorites…

Fine dining from the rooftop of the Hotel Raphael near the Pantheon is an intoxicating experience. The terrace is multi-level and the views of Rome from all around are magnificent. I love watching the sun set over the city as I drink a glass of wine and see how many monuments I can recognize.

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The Italians know how to make delicious food, which is not a surprise. I love pasta and the way it is served with a special touch. It is never smothered in sauce but instead embellished with a delicate herbed olive oil or light wine sauce. This pasta below had chunks of white sea bass that was tender, mild and disappeared in no time.

I must also give the Italians my hearty approval on good pours of wine in the glass. The house wines in Rome are always very good. Most are locally produced. Frascati, grown in vineyards around Rome, is a common white wine that is served in Roman restaurants.

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Desserts don’t take a backseat to the main dishes. This pistachio gelato was a work of art. As a city known for its outstanding architectural designs and centuries old famous fresco paintings, this should be no surprise.
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Sometimes it’s just fun to enjoy a simple gelato while walking the streets of Rome and taking in the sights. My quota is one, sometimes two gelati a day.DSC00297The old Jewish Ghetto is one of my favorite landmarks to explore. Outdoor cafes offer kosher food, some with recipes used centuries ago.
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Carciofi alla giudia (Jewish style artichokes) are a specialty in the Jewish Ghetto. Deep fried and served in a crispy layer, they are delicious. The outer leaves taste like potato chips. Battered and fried pumpkin flowers are also very popular and, unlike the Carciofi, they are tender and delicate.
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Markets at Campo dei Fiori are a lot of fun to shop. Produce is bright and freshly picked.
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Outdoor cafes are everywhere in Rome. It’s obvious that food and socializing are very important to the Italian lifestyle.
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Ask anyone where to find good coffee and they will direct you to Sant’Eustachio il caffe. There you will generally see a line of people waiting. Established in 1938, it is only steps away from the Pantheon. This is the only coffee in Rome roasted by wood and not fossil fuel. All of the coffee is roasted on the premise. I was fortunate and found an outdoor table to seat myself while I sipped my coffee.
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The Protestant Cemetery (Cimitero dei Protestanti) is in the Testaccio neighborhood. I found this place to be immensely interesting. It is very green and well-kept, with sculptures and statues over graves. Here is a famous one called the Angel of Grief, sculpted in 1894 by William Story to be the gravestone for the artist and his wife.
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Trastevere is Rome’s nightlife central. It comes alive with cafes and street music, vendors and whirligigs that light up the night sky. Delicious smells of food coming from eateries as I pass by mixed with the lively chatter of people enjoying time together brings a festive feel to it all. I love to linger here and experience the charming ambience of this ancient part of Rome.

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Fountains are everywhere, from the old famous ones in Piazza Navona to small expressions outside of buildings. This one caught my attention in passing. Water trickled down from underneath while turtles balance along the edge, encouraged by the men below.

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Walking the back streets of Rome can bring many delightful surprises. As I rounded a corner, this is what I saw. Someone had an amazing green thumb. I couldn’t begin to imaging the amount of work and attention that went into keeping it all so green and healthy.DSC01550
As I put these photos together, I began to feel that old familiar tug again. Of course, it is Rome demanding my presence once more. There is so much more to see, so much that you could never imagine, she whispers to me. Will I succumb? Probably….in time.



Categories: History

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

23 replies

  1. This is scary–this is what I did almost exactly when in Rome. The coffee, the cemetery (I am a high school English teacher) and he artichokes are my favorite!! I swear I am channeling you and Ishita. 😉

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  2. Thanks for such an lovely an enticing blog. I have never been to the Old Jewish Ghetto – it’s now jotted down in my wish book. And I totally agree with Sant’Eustachio – the best coffee in Rome!

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  3. Not fair Susan! After reading this fabulous post, I want up and go!!!

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  4. Beautiful photos, Susan. Sitting here in a community that was settled around the year 1900 near a city formed 150 years ago, your posts refresh my historical perspective. None would say “Keep Rome weird” because Rome sets standards based on almost 3000 years of habitation, just as the native people of the Northwest set their own standards based upon a different set of abiding truths over more than 10,000 years of habitation in the Columbia Basin and our Tualatin Valley. Your blog is a bridge for maintaining our connection to history. Thanks.

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  5. beautiful blog post and you look adorable! Thank you for sharing!

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  6. Susan….great post on Rome. And you know? I love cemeteries. Love them. The one in Milan is beautiful. So peaceful and the sculptures are very moving, just like your weeping angel here.

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  7. Ahhhh beautiful Roma. So much to see and experience. I love your photo of the door with the lovely plants. One of the nicest things about writing a blog is re living our wonderful times in Italy. It keeps us motivated to return as soon as possible

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  8. I love the turtle fountain. Last time I visited it was under scaffolding…I must return.

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  9. Una vita non basta….can’t get enough of Roma!

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  10. Sweet memories, Susan. My travel bug is gnawing away at me again too.

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  11. I couldn’t agree with you more! I have never eaten at the Raphael rooftop though. However, years ago my uncle, who loved Rome as much as I do, gave me money and orders to eat at the top of the Hassler, a big splurge for me.
    I am so looking forward to Rome this late fall!
    A presto

    Liked by 1 person

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