Monthly Archives: July 2007

Ostia, not just a beach

When most people get to Rome they usually want to take a day trip to Pompei. However Ostia is much closer, easier to get to and in a much better state of preservation. The mosaics and frescoes are in very good condition considereing the amount of time and centuries worth of weather they have had to contend with.

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This port used to be extremely important to the the city of ancient Rome. It was used to ship many good essential to the city’s inhabitants like grain and other common foodstuffs. However another harbour was built at Fiumicino and yet another at Civitavecchia. This eventually lead to Ostia losing it’s importance as Rome’s only commercially important harbour.

Eventually the city was abandoned. The ancient structures that were left over were recycled and used again to construct other bulidings in Rome. The marble was also torn off and used to make quick lime.

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The directions to Ostia aresimple and its relatively close to Rome. You can get there very easily by metro and then change over to a train. You take line B ,the blue line on the metro, and you get off at Piramide metro stop. From there you take the train going to Ostia Lido. The journey takes about 55 minutes and you can use a metro ticket for the trip. So a day pass or even a seventy five minute ticket for one euro will suffice. So a maximum of two euro there and back is very cheap.

The site is closed on Mondays and on the 1st of January, the 1st of May and December the 25th. At the moment the site is open from 9 in the morning till 6 in the evening and you have to be out by 7. Tickets cost 4 euro including entrance to the museum.

Go have a look around at some well preserved buildings and curiosities of ancient Rome and even if you don’t want to go see some old ruins at least you know how to get to the beach.

Do As Romans Do

While you are in Rome for your holiday unwind a bit and relax. Here are a couple of suggestions and ways that might help you adjust and get used to doing things the Roman way for a while.

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The first thing you should do is lose all sense of time and forward planning. Throw your itinerary out of the window and go on an adventure. Have fun getting lost and discovering something new. Don’t follow the crowd all the time. Go off track and down some old beaten path and you may find a few surprises. If you manage to do this you will enjoy Rome a lot more because this is how the city is.

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Take a stroll along the Tevere and go have a good look around the Forum and old market areas. Take your time don’t rush and sample all the ice cream and pizza to your hearts content. Sit down and have a coffee or a glass of limoncello and live the good life for a while. Rome is a city that is meant to be discovered by walking. All the sites are close enough to get to on foot and its also a lot cheaper doing it this way too. Plus you will also have an excuse to treat yourself to lunch at the many restaurants in the nice side streets running off from all the piazzas after you have worked up an appetite.

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There is so much to see in this city that you could spend a life time here. As you casualy walk down the many streets and into the piazzas there will always be something that will catch your eye and will pique your curiosity. Be lead by your eyes and not by a piece of paper. Go where your curiosity leads you. You can also relax in one of the many parks found in Rome and make like the locals and lounge around on the grass or spend some quality time with that someone special. Don’t overlook the romantic side of the city. There are many quiet spots to go to and lots of perfect settings to have dinner or an afternoon drink and watch the sun set over the ancient skyline with its many beautiful buildings.

 

 caffe.jpgRome is also a great place to go to to have a really good party. The district of San Lorenzo is always alive with its students who always have time to party and socialise. The beach at Ostia is also only a 55 minute train ride away. The remains of the aniceint port of Ostia ar also really close. So you can always do a bit of sight seeing and then closer to the evening head of to a bar or club and paint the town red.

Rome is not just a city with a whole bunch of old ruins. It is still very much alive and is buzzing with activity. There is plenty to do and see for the whole family and it is full of activities for the young and old. You will never forget your holiday in Rome and you will be retelling your holiday stories for a long time afterwards.

Good advice to stick to in Rome good location. Whilst on Holiday it is worth while searching for accomendation based close to Termini station. From Termini you are able to travel all around Rome, and also take trains to other cities around Italy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Things you didn’t know about Rome and the Italians

Senatus Populusque Romanus

                                                   Senatus Populusque

When visiting Roma you are very likely to come across the letters SPQR.
It is used as a signature for the government; you will see it on coins, public documents, and also dedications of monuments and public works. In modern usage, SPQR appears in the coat of arms of the city of Rome, as well as on many of the city’s civic buildings and manhole covers. Benito Mussolini used it in his propaganda about the “New Roman Empire.SPQR is an initialism from a Latin phrase, Senatus Populusque Romanus (“The Senate and the Roman People”), referring to the government of the ancient Roman Republic,


 
Here are some other interesting information about “S.P.Q.R.”

• In the movie Gladiator, Maximus has SPQR tattooed on his left shoulder.
• In the movie Titus, the radio microphone into which Saturninus speaks has the call letters “S.P.Q.R.”
• The experimental band This Heat wrote a song entitled “S.P.Q.R” which appears on their 1981 album Deceit.
• The SPQR logo also appears at the base of “The Angel of Independence” statue in Mexico City. Its relevance there is not clear.

Movies

Rome hosts the Cinecittà Studios, which is the centre of Italian cinema, and some of today’s biggest box office hits were filmed there, A given example is Gangs of New York.It was founded in 1937 by Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, the studios were bombed by the Western Allies during World War II. In the 1950s, Cinecittà was the filming location for several large American film productions like Ben-Hur, and then became the studio most closely associated with Federico Fellini.After a period of near-bankruptcy in the 1980s, Cinecittà was privatized by the government of Italy.
 

 Cinecittà Studios,


……….Did You Know?……….
  

 1) A reason why maybe Italy heads international fashion. Starting only in 300 BC, there were barbers in Rome.

2) The Italian flag is inspired by the French flag introduced during Napoleon’s 1797 invasion of the peninsula.

3) The famous children’s story, Pinocchio , was written by an Italian.

4) Italy’s contributions to science include the barometer, electric battery, nitroglycerin, and wireless telegraphy.

5) Eyeglasses are an Italian invention.

6) While “romans” is actually the root word for “romance”,  

     Pinocchio                                                                                       
 

For information on great locations in Rome, Please visit: www.hotelrome.net