First of all the answer is: Yes, You can! Antiques, Middle Ages, Baroque, Renaissance, neoclassicism, fountains, over 200 churches and 900 Basilicas, obelisks, beautiful parks, seven hills, galleries, museums and villas make an excellent ground for learning the history of the Roman empire; however, history of art and religion can be seen even in many cheap hostels in Rome, Italy.
Legends call upon the unveiling, and petrified lions, horses, dolphins, fish, turtles, newts, and elephants to the game of discovery. Of course, there is the unavoidable Capitoline she-wolf with Romulus and Remus, the symbol of this city.
1950’s: Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck riding the Vespa through the streets of Rome. Everything is somehow light and lively. Like in a movie! Nearly six decades later, scene two: Rome, you and huge crowds. Reality!
Your first encounter with the city was nothing like the scene from the romantic comedy “Roman Holiday”. Streets dominated by Fiat and Smart look like one long column that doesn’t move, while between them “Vespa-acrobats” ride the big and small slalom, and slalom riders aren’t just ragazze and ragazzi, but also business people, with the mandatory helmet and lap top bag. But luckily, most of the things you’ve planned on seeing are in the zone pedonale, the pedestrian zone. Rome has two metro lines (red and blue), as well as numerous buses, yet it is best to walk around the city. However, if your hostel in Rome is located a bit further from the city centre, it is best to buy a public transportation ticket (€11 for three days). Another useful thing you should get from a hostel in Rome is a map of the city, mark in your potential heroes and heroines, and embark on an adventure.
Altar of the Motherland, Altare della Patria is imposing itself on you, along with the Piazza Venezia. Every statesman who officially visits the Italian government, comes here to lay the wreath and pays his respects. Here is the tomb of the Unknown Soldier with an eternal flame, where two soldiers constantly keep watch. This neoclassical monument to Victor Emmanuel II looks nice and grand all by itself and it seems to hide everything around it.
Before returning to your cheap hostel in Rome, stop by the Trevi Fountain and imagine yourself in the place of Anita Ekberg bathing in it. Life isn’t a movie, but it can still be sweet like the Fellini’s closing credits you hum. Before leaving, turn your back, put the coin in the right hand and toss it over the left shoulder, wishing you return once again to this eternal city.
Arrivederci Roma!!! Arrivederci Italy!!!
Photo by: Gábor Szakács