As a part of our work trip to Israel, Eva, Karen, and I decided to leave New York City on Saturday night and fly into Rome on our way to Israel. The way we planned the trip is that we would have exactly 23 hours in Rome.
We started off with just some minor hiccups – a nauseating ride to the airport, Karen swapping out bags in JFK, my unsigned passport, and some serious lack of communication with our AirBnB host. All in all we made it to Rome in one piece and on a flight that was so empty we could all sleep across multiple seats. Upon arrival in Rome we decided against taking the train into the city center because between the three of us we could get to our AirBnB in a cab for the same price. We arrived, changed, refused to give a woman we did not know our passport numbers, and we were on our way!
First stop was the Trevi Fountain, pizza, and gelato. We read about a great pizza place online and it did not disappoint. The restaurant was called L’Archetto and was just a few minutes walking from the fountain. We had a great lunch there and then continued on to gawk at the fountain and eat some gelato. I got stracciatella and caffe flavors in a cone.
Next up was our walk to the Spanish Steps which unfortunately were closed for construction. We headed down Rome’s fashion district and onward to The Pantheon. After visiting The Pantheon, Eva suggested we check out the The Roman Ghetto (also known as the Jewish ghetto) which supposedly has great food and a beautiful synagogue. It was only a 10 minute walk from The Pantheon so we walked over and on our way stopped for a quick cappuccino.
Once we arrived in the Roman ghetto there was security everywhere and barricades up. We thought this was a little odd but tried our luck by walking around to another entrance. It turned out that every entrance was blocked off. Karen asked a guard if we could go in and he said, “you are too late.” It was only 4:00pm on a Sunday but we were like, “uhh ok…guess we are late. bye.” We decided not to push it since getting in a fight with security was not on our agenda.
We then headed into an information office for some warmth and to find out what was going on. The man working behind the desk looks at us and goes, “you know why it is all closed off, right?” and we did not know (of course) to which he replied, “the Pope is in the synagogue right now.” It turns out it was a bad day to not read the news – Pope Francis makes his first papal visit to Rome synagogue.
We then headed to find a bus to take us to The Colosseum. We may have gone in a few circles around the city and had to switch buses but, we did get a great driving view of the sunset over the city. We finally arrived at The Colosseum as it was getting dark and it was absolutely stunning. We spent some time in awe of the structure. We made a quick stop at Arch de Constantine, just down the road, and then headed back to our AirBnB. After napping for an hour we layered up to go get dinner at La Tavernelle, a restaurant which came highly recommended to us by a co-worker. Three dishes of pasta and another gelato later it was 10pm and we were exhausted.
We called it a night as we had to be on our way to the airport at 6:30am for our flight to Tel Aviv. All in all a great day in Rome – until next time!