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Rome view of the spanish steps and many people

European Adventure Part Deux Rome

Roma e Villa Borghese

As soon as I arrive in Rome and upon immediately exiting the train station, I’m once again treated to the wonderful views that make Roma a timeless and quintessential city. Fabulous architecture and sculpture all around complemented by clear blue skies and warm weather. Seems like there’s never a bad weather day in Italy. I only had about 6 hours to explore Rome on this trip before having to take a bus ride to Porto Sant’Elpidio for the wedding.

Eager to make the most of my time, I started with a visit to a marketplace located right inside the train station, the Italian Mercato. This was like the Italian version of a food hall with different types of Italian food options. I got a decent meal here. Nothing really special and it was a bit overpriced but I guess that is to be expected from the type of food you would find in a train station. It was still a cut above what you would normally get in most stations.

After finishing my train station meal, I made my way towards Villa Borghese. I had pre-purchased a 2-hour timed ticket for the famous Borghese art gallery inside. The gallery houses some of the most impressive examples of Baroque and early Renaissance antiquity art dating all the way back to the 1st century. All the masterful works of talented sculptures like Bernini were on full display.

If you’re as much a fan of sculpture art as I am, this is definitely the place to be. His most impressive works can be found within these walls. Pluto forcibly snatching Persephone, Apollo’s pursuit of Daphne, and a sculpture of David as he’s just about to slay Goliath among many others. All equally finely detailed and precisely crafted to perfection. Each sculpture was designed to recreate the telling of its own literary story and captures each moment quite beautifully.

You’ll also find the impressive emperor’s room which features beautifully fine crafted busts of the twelve Caesars. In addition to the sculpture art, there are also plenty of paintings, mosaics and frescoes that fully cover the ceilings and walls very similar to the type of awe-inspiring display one would find in the Vatican collection. Quite a magnificent collection indeed and well worth the price of admission.

The grounds around the gallery were equally impressive. You’ll find more statues, fountains and plenty of gorgeous green areas all throughout. A perfect spot to take more stunning pictures enjoy a nice picnic or unwind with a good book. After getting my fill at the Villa, I made my way towards Piazza del Popolo and the famous Spanish steps. These were both impressive sites I had failed to see on my previous trip to Rome.

Prior to visiting the Borghese gallery, I tried stopping off at one of the most popular Gelato spots in Rome but unluckily for me, they were closed. I found it really odd that a Gelato shop would be closed late morning. I was told it would open up later in the afternoon. Having to be at the museum on time, I had to skip out on this Gelato experience. It served as a reminder of the type of service expectations I had already grown accustomed to when visiting Italy. Italians always manage to move at their own time and pace, especially when it comes to the service industry.

I took plenty more pictures as I walked through Piazza del Popolo, the Spanish steps and passed other notable central forums and landmarks of Rome. I even made another stop at perhaps the most recognizable Roman landmark of all, Fontana Trevi. It was just as impressive as my previous visit but with even larger crowds this time. Of course, I couldn’t leave Rome without one final stop for delicious Gelato! I still had to make up for missing out earlier in the day.

After enjoying my last bit of Gelato, I made my way back to the train station, picked up my luggage and rushed for the bus station. After a great deal of running around, trying to navigate my way out of the confusing train station, I finally made it over to the bus station. I’m able to find my bus just in time. If I had failed to board this bus on time, it would have really derailed my remaining travel plans. This was the only bus headed to Porto Sant’Elpidio during this time of day. Even though Rome was a brief stopover trip this time, as always it did not disappoint.

I bid goodbye to Rome with hopes of returning once again in the future. The four-hour bus ride to Porto Sant’Elpidio went fairly smoothly. Buses are my least favorite form of transportation but sadly there was no other option if I wanted to get to my friends’ wedding in this small Italian town. I ended up finding a local bus company that specialized in taking these types of routine trips from Rome. It worked out great! They were clean, modern, on-time, and really have no complaints.

The bus ride itself took me through some very scenic viewpoints along the way. Gorgeous views of mountains, hillsides and plenty of greenery. Many vineyards and olive trees are seen on this route. And also plenty of tunnels! Yes, a great deal of what seemed like endless dark tunnels that at times went right through the mountains.

Onward to Porto Sant’Elpidio

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