Especially going to Rome, which would have been overwhelming without the guidance and reservations and showing us around. No crowds and great audioguide by the prince. And we just loved the Hotel Lancelot! Their knowledge, interpretation and charm impressed my whole family- and they're pretty harsh critics.". He is the host of a public television series, and a public radio travel show, and … A dream come true! Walking into the Colosseum from the tunnel the gladiators used was awe inspiring. The tour was a perfect way to be introduced to the many aspects and layers (the lasagna) of Rome. It was beyond fantastic! The guides (both RS and local) did everything they could to make the trip time-efficient and packed with the most edifying experiences. We didn't know this was even an option as part of the tour. But I'm happy to say that I can't wait to go another Rick Steves tour. This was a special trip for my husband and I as we were celebrating meeting in Rome 50 years ago. I learned so much that I would have otherwise completely missed and/or would have been unaware of. This trip was all I had hoped it would be. As you peel through its fascinating and jumbled layers, you'll find the marble ruins of ancient times, tangled streets of the medieval world, early Christian churches, grand Renaissance buildings and statues, Baroque fountains and facades, 21st-century traffic, and nearly three million people. Everyone was friendly and adventurous. "How do you choose just one?? We were old and young, outgoing and quiet, from all different states, retired and working. We were fortunate to have Stephanie as our tour guide on a previous tour of Italy in 2016 and were pleased to have her again. Francesca, our other tour guide was also wonderful. ▲▲ Trajan's Column, Market, and Forum Tall column with narrative relief, forum ruins, and museum with entry to Trajan's Market. The guides informed and deepened our experience in ways we could never have achieved on our own. I felt like a kid again as we walked back in time going down 30 feet revealing pieces each building. But, it was the trip of a lifetime. Loved how this tour hits major sights but starts with a visit at the amazing San Clemente where there were almost no tourists. All the guides were knowledgeable and warm and friendly. The Borghese was it for me. I followed Rick Steve's for years, used his books, and now finally experienced one of his tours! Bernini made exquisite sculptures with attention to many small, intricate details, filled with body action and animated faces projecting the look of being alive. "Villa Borghese. Seeing the Colosseum lit up at night was spectacular! (16:58), Visiting St. Peter's Basilicia I don't know if it's Italy or our guide but I really enjoyed everyone's company. May 30, 2016 - Explore Sandra Kent's board "Rick Steves" on Pinterest. Every site and activity, both those we did on the tour or on our free time, either met or exceeded my expectations. It was warm to hot and crowded in Rome when we arrived in early June and Nina helped us navigate the city quickly and efficiently. I could have spent a couple of hours just sitting there.". The tour was wonderful, and I enjoyed the Hotel Lancelot immensely. Be on your feet, walking and standing, for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions. We prepared for the trip by doing an online course on Michelangelo, but seeing the Basilica and the Sistine Chapel in person blew us away. The trainee who accompanied us was wonderful and we wished she was our tour guide instead. The rest of your day is free to wander through this immense church and explore more of the Eternal City on your own. Rome had been a dream for at least 15 years. My husband and I have picture taking contests (although he won't admit it because he copies my spots!) I really cannot say that I would wish any part of the trip had gone differently. Free stuff including Rick Steves Rome guidebook, Italian phrase book, map, moneybelt and earplugs Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee - 300 A.D.) to the development and evolution of the Catholic church. "Tour guide Francesca shivering at the Forum, but bravely soldiering on with her talk. We'll send the notification email when a tour opens within a season (spring, summer, fall, winter) or region. Our Rome tour serves up Europe's most intoxicating brew of dazzling art, earth-shaking history, and city life with style. Visit St. Peter's, the greatest church on earth, learn something about eternity by touring the huge Vatican Museums, ramble among the rabble and rubble through ancient Rome's Colosseum and Forum, savor the sumptuous Borghese Gallery, and take an early evening stroll with Rome's beautiful people. Visits to the "newer" sites like the Vatican, Sistine Chapel and all the other churches and art museums were also spectacular. My wife and I were absolutely THRILLED with our group tour of Rome! It exceeded our expectations, the perfect balance (for us) between "hand-holding" and free time. My head was swimming with all the new things I was learning. "As my daughter and I wandered "lost" in a tiny neighborhood in Rome , no visible street names, our Maps app not really working for us and leading us in circles , I remembered the sage advice of our tour guide , " when in Rome, navigate by the landmarks- the Coliseum, Trevi Fountain ,etc ,to get your bearings and find your way home ". Pace was not as difficult as I had anticipated and the local guides were exceptional. Went to Rome six years ago. I appreciated the guides who helped me "see" what I was looking at. See our FAQ | Call He made everyone feel special. ", Our first Rick Steves Tour and our first planned tour except cruising. We walked all over town and I feel that I know the layout of Rome as well as my home town. Stephanie was excellent and the local guides were brilliang, especially Francesca. We knew we were in good hands with his guidance. She was also very dialed into the needs and requests of the group as a whole as well as individuals with special requests. "Well, this is hard to pick as there was not any part of the tour that I didn't enjoy. "The unexpected visit to the Cimitero dei protestanti, or non-Catholic Cemetary of Rome, took my breath away. The 7 day tour of Rome gave me in depth experience including Ancient Rome, history, art and food. But specific to Rick Steves tours, was our guides, specifically our head guide Julian who made the entire experience both rich and easy for us. Well balanced itinerary. It was an excellent balance of ancient sites, museums, and churches, but also a delightful food tour and visit to the Mediterranean. It was fast paced but allowed time for personal exploration as well.Our guide was friendly but firm and (blessedly) easy to understand. This is a moderately active tour! We were pleasantly surprised at all the extras that were added to the schedule. Happy Travels! The Bernini statue of the man carrying his father & his son holding onto his leg, truly brought tears to my eyes.". She has an incredible gift of sharing her passion for the people's stories from the history of these areas.". "St. Peter's Basilica. We started with a Rick Steves 7 day tour of Rome then spent 20 more days touring Italy on our own with a Rick Steves Italy book. She gave a voice to the stones allowing us to not only understand the ancient city but of the people who built and used these structures.". So fun! Everyday we had new experiences that were unique. From the tours (& guides!!) If I were the only solo-traveler, it would have been a very lonely experience. "The San Clemente Basilica provided such a perfect metaphor for the city of Rome. I am not Catholic but a very powerful moment. I don't want to spoil any newbies. Find helpful customer reviews and review ratings for Rick Steves' Rome 2007 at Amazon.com. I told Ben he was at the top of my list of favorite people that day. It’s an amazing pool of talent, passion, and travel savvy. A day full of impact seeing the sites up close.". Loved the Colosseum, St Peters, Pantheon, Borghese and the food tour was special.". ©2021 Rick Steves' Europe, Inc. | After a week, I still can't put it into words. And the food was delicious! "The fact that Karin took time out of her day to get our entire tour group tickets to the Papal Audience on September 11th. That was a lot of fun and the pork we had was FANTASTIC. Today we'll focus on Renaissance Rome. On our Best of Rome in 7 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…. The side by side existence of goodness and evil as part of everyday life in ancient Rome. The most enjoyable day was the one when we were bussed to Ostia Antica and then to the beach for an hour. Even throwing us a Halloween Dinner Party! Seeing the Pope up close! Request a CD from them on their tour experience. The tour guides were knowledgeable and well prepared. The local guides were nicely detailed in their presentations and clearly passionate about their subject matter. WOW!". Personable, well informed guides who made the attractions come to life. Show Rick Steves Italy Audio Tours, Ep Rome: Colosseum - Feb 28, 2018 It was well organized, with a good balance between tour and free time. Unlike Rome's politically oriented Forum, our walk through Ostia gives us a chance to envision the daily lives of merchants and craftsmen and appreciate beautifully preserved mosaics. "The visit to the multilayered San Clemente has to be my WOW moment. So many "wow" moments, but many of them were facilitated or enabled by the guides, so the guides get the biggest "wow" credit!". Art, History, Architecture, Culture, Religion, Food, and Community. It was great! Personally, the gladiator entrance into the Colosseum and the Pauline Napoleon reclining statue in the Borghese Museum.". We visited all the major sites and the pace was brisk but there was also plenty of free time to explore on our own, do some shopping and try restaurants hidden in back alleys. I am so glad that was part of the tour. Stepping through the Gate of Death and onto the Colosseum floor, hearing the echos of 60,000 people screaming, was something so special thanks to Francesca's evocative story telling.". We were in Eastern Europe two years ago and that was all the tour guides could talk about. My "wow" moment for art was The Calling of St. Matthew by Caravaggio in San Luigi dei Francesi, which we saw in our free time. Free stuff including Rick Steves Rome guidebook, Italian phrase book, map, moneybelt and earplugs Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee Packed with indispensable tips and recommendations from America's expert on Europe, Rick Steves' Tour: Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam is a tour guide in your pocket—and on your smartphone. For coronavirus (COVID-19) travel information, Our tour guide, Nina was awesome! I also really enjoyed the variety of activities offered, the free time that was allotted each day to explore on our own, the amazing location of our hotel, and the group dinners. Typically we would avoid a group trip but since this was our first experience traveling overseas we decided to embrace the idea. This was our first European tour experience, so I have nothing to compare it to, however I would say that my expectations were met....and more! There was plenty of free time built in the week so I didn't feel I couldn't keep up or become exhausted and not enjoy the trip. This Rome tour was excellent. It brought to mind the change that has characterized Europe for all its existence. Karin, our guide, was friendly, knowledgeable and well organized. This map is excerpted from the guidebook Rick Steves’ Rome by Rick Steves … Nina was very helpful with suggestions as to what to see that was not on the tour. The days were full, but not overwhelming. "When I walked into the room with at the Borghese where Bernini statue of Apollo and Daphne is housed I audibly gasped (I didn't realize it until Francesca looked at me and smiled ??). Karin was so friendly and knowledgeable and wanted to share her love of Italy with us all. She made it clear this tour was for "US" and to always come to her for questions or problems. To see the Colosseum, Forum, Pantheon and Palatine Hill was something never to be forgotten. Francesca made you feel what it would have been like to attend a session as a spectator or participant. "The Capitoline Museum had a surprising variety of painting masterworks, including Rubens, Caravagio, and Raphael, as well as the suckling she wolf, Dying Gaul and the ancient bronze equestrian statute or Marcus Aurelius.". The best part for me was walking through the different neighborhoods, because it is always the best way to get to know a new place. Events and history that I'd only read about came to life. My second "wow" moment was the food tour. The best thing is that he is spot on about the prices of getting into the Vatican museum and the Colosseum. Using public transportaion was very helpful in learning how to get around on our own for free time. I enjoyed learning about the history and culture of this great city and finally getting to experience it first hand. Our tour guide Stephanie was outstanding. We had a great trip! I liked the wide variety of experiences we were able to enjoy such as visiting a 1st century church one day and then walking the local food market and tasting some of the local delicacies the next day. "The Borghese Gallery was astounding, and the guide that led us through it brought the art to life for us.". We learned a tremendous amount and really got the feel for the city. We had an outstanding week in Rome. I thought there would be more repeaters. "The Borghese Gallery and the food tour.". (36:16), Rome II: Beneath the Surface I love churches, architecture, sculptures, so much to see. Each day was different and we did more than just focus on the high profile ruins like the colosseum. We took three paid tours, but used Rick Steves "Rome" to navigate the city, and saw most everything. Wonderful to have a visit to Rome well orchestrated. Enjoyed the pace of the tour (experienced everything we wanted to & Nina had great recommendations for other things to do during our free time) and will definitely book another Rick Steves tour for our future travels abroad. I also had a very emotional reaction to the Pieta in St. This was such a wonderful tour in so many ways. It was at times overwhelming but in a most positive way. The reason I chose a tour over planning it myself was based on two previous RS tours within the past year, both of which were outstanding. Incredible art with our own private expert guide to help us appreciate many things that most people would easily miss when observing a masterpiece.". A moment of suffering overlapped with daily living, that somehow seemed more poignant than the Colosseum.". We'd watch Rick's shows on PBS for years and finally in early January, we decided to take the plunge. One of my favorite aspects of our tour was our hotel's close proximity to the Colosseum. I loved every minute of my experience! We booked this tour because of the outstanding experience we had on the RS London tour, after having visited London several times prior. "I love how peaceful Ostia Antica is- both the ruins we visited and the modern-day town where we stopped for gelato and I saw the indoor natatorium with the green roof. Bus: 3 hours. I could ride 81 bus all day! "I loved the Borghese Gallery. She made you feel the plight of the slaves. ▲▲▲ National Museum of Rome Greatest collection of Roman sculpture anywhere. "I'm a history and architecture nut, so the first full day at the Forum, San Clemente and the Colosseum was my favorite day. Enjoyed taking in the whole event and snapping beautiful photos ten feet from the Pope. "The Borghese Gallery never ceases to amaze me.". Likewise we had spent time in Rome. The hotel was excellent, the daily guides were very good. We went with another couple that were friends of ours and we had a very nice trip. Terms of Service | Privacy, Evening walk through Rome including Trevi Fountain. Stacey and Anna were wonderful tour guides and the sights shared with the group were amazing. The pace was pleasant. Here's what you'll see and do on our Best of Rome tour: Group sightseeing events subject to change. "There were many. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves Rome guidebook. Without them I would have overlooked and missed a lot. One learns about how ancient Romans lived as well as modern Romans which helped when I wandered about. The second was the Borghese Museum. We went back the next week, when we were on our own, and I think that sight would never grow old.". Her love of art and enthusiasm in sharing were wonderful gifts also.". I think I'll have to cut Rome. Ben did a good job in guiding us and the other specialized guides provided a lot of knowledge. Published by Avalon Travel Publishing, available at www.ricksteves.com. An outstanding whirl wind tour of Rome; all of the sites visited and presented by Ben were perfect for a 7 day tour. RS and Ben did not disappoint! IT WAS A GREAT EXPERIENCE WITH LOTS OF HISTORY, AND OUR GUIDES TO THE MUSEUM AND OTHER AREAS MADE LOOKING AT ART IN A NEW WAY. There were no hitches along the way with the planned schedule, and all the guides were right on time and very friendly and knowledgeable. Thank you for the wonderful report. ▲ Castel Sant'Angelo Hadrian's Tomb turned castle, prison, papal refuge, now museum. We saw all the major site as well as a few things that were a little off the beaten path. At that moment, I felt I owned Rome". It was immersive and that is just what I had hoped for. This was my 7th R.S. Going on this tour changed our approach on how to do travel. I plan on taking the Germany, Austria and Switzerland tour with Rick Steve's in 2012. This is my second Rick Steves tour and by far it's the best one. Unfortunately, I was astounded by the number of tourists, which seemed to be a human river in the Vatican Museums and the Borghese Gallery. This tour exceeded them all. Then we'll eat our way through Rome's Trastevere neighborhood, learning about the tradition of Italian cuisine from the generations of families producing these tasty Roman specialties. Thank you. has been serving locals since 1906 with food that makes up for the lack of … This trip was great value for the money and created built-in socialization with each other for the evenings, "Michelangelo's The Pieta in St. Peter's Basilica and all Bernini scuptures, but especially the "Saviour of the World" at St. Sebastian's Catacombs.". One when my husband and I were exploring on our own. Sleep in Rome. One wow moment after another.". "Seeing the Coliseum from the little restaurant just around the corner from my hotel and realizing that I was staying right in the heart of 2700years of history.". So much history overlapping, and each time layered gently on each other, forcing you to think about all of the history in your own city that you will never know or recognize. His low key style and excellent sense of humor made everyone confident that each day would be a success. "I enjoyed the visit to San Clemente church very much. Another (#4) outstanding RS tour. That's not a criticism of the tour, it's just how I am. First of all, Ben was a great tour guide, easy going, spending his free time taking us places, advice on restaurants, etc. Thank you so much!! With Rick's tours you carry your own bag and must travel light. They brought the art and history of Rome alive! The tour was very well organized and our guides were excellent. Our tour guide, Karin Kibby, was exceedingly gracious, assuring group cohesion and organization, creating a tour "family". "It's a toss up between 1)entering the Colosseum on the "floor" level through the "gladiator's tunnel" and 2) suddenly finding myself face-to-face with a first century fresco of Jesus in the midst of the San Callisto catacombs.". The tour activities were structured to give us the type of complete Rome experience we would not have had on our own, yet there was plenty of time to be on our own to explore or relax. Our second tour with RS in Italy. Thank you. The for tour helped us understand Rome, unfolding day by day with wonders of history from the ancient to the bustling modern-day city. (18:31), Antiquities and Archaeology II We had been through the Vatican on our own many years ago but didn't know the significance of what we were experiencing. It's a breeze to reach Rome's airports by taxi or train. It was well organized and covered all the important and interesting sites. We were lucky that the Pope was hosting the Audience during our tour, Karin helped those of us who wanted to go get tickets and reversed the day's schedule in order to cover the tour schedule that afternoon. He was probably 8 feet away when he made the rounds through the crowd. But walking into the Colisseo literally took my breath away. It was a great tour, and our firs Rick Steves tour. No problems whatsoever, the main tour guide was ready to help us at any time. "We were pleased to learn that our guide had snagged tickets for us to attend the Vatican Square audience with the Pope. I would say I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience, but was looking forward to seeing the art of the masters: sculpture, paintings, architecture, etc.". I was surprised that about half the guests were first-timers also. We'll meet at our hotel at 3 p.m. this afternoon. The first was in the cab from the airport to the hotel when all of the sudden we turned a corner and found ourselves riding along ancient ruins. Ben was an amazing guide who kept us on track, surprised us with new adventures, introduced us to Italian food, transportation, history and culture. Hotel was very good, we'll stay there when we go back. My WOW moment was walking the amazing city of Rome. Not part of the tour but arranged by Lisa was a Papal audience. We especially appreciated the little surprises RS tours seem to add. If I could do one thing differently, it would be to have a picnic in the Borghese gardens after the tour of the museum and spend the afternoon riding bikes through the park. ▲ Victor Emmanuel Monument Gigantic edifice celebrating Italian unity, with Rome from the Sky elevator ride up to 360-degree city view. It gave us the confidence to venture out on our own to Orvieto (which was beautiful) after the tour ended. Everything was wonderful. Although I enjoyed all the local guides, I especially appreciated Francesca's tour of the Borghese Gallery and Paulo's tour of the Colosseum. I completely enjoyed the event, even though I came down with a cold the first night we were together. Bernini's most graceful and lifelike sculptures reside here — his athletic David and delicate Apollo and Daphne — as well as masterpieces by Canova, Caravaggio, Titian, and Raphael. Borghese Gallery was the second. Francesca had such a unique and approachable style that made the art and architecture so accessible. All extensions were great with the exception of viewing the graffiti run neighborhood.". A shared tour is a smart way to experience the sights, while meeting up with fellow Rick Steves readers. They made the city easy to move round in. Unforgettable.". By Caravaggio. We sat and listened and were amazed. 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