It's a showcase of Western civilization, with astonishingly ancient sights and a modern vibrancy. I would stay at the Lancelot again when in Rome. We have traveled in Europe using RS guide books, and did a RS tour in Greece 11 years ago, so our expectations were high. We had a great trip! We learned a lot from these people as well -- not only about other destinations in Europe but around the world!". This was a different tour as we stayed in one place in a city rather than move from town to town. "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.". "I am the type of person that would look at something like the Colosseum or the Forum and seen nothing but a pile of old rocks. "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 ". Rainer was very well versed on the history of Rome and gave us information on ways of local living and how to get around the city. That piece of advice became our mantra when we went off to explore on our own .". These were the most memorable "wow" experiences for me.". I loved that they did all the planning and work and all I had to do was show up outside the hotel at the designated time and enjoy our adventure in Rome. 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. "Well, this is hard to pick as there was not any part of the tour that I didn't enjoy. (I was the same way when I was in the Louvre last summer)". I got to see much of Rome that otherwise may not have found. The churches were so beautiful and the Bernini sculpture at the Villa Borghese was so lifelike! We've always done it all ourselves. I was in awe at all the history and how well preserved so much of it is and they think that 80% of Ancient Rome is still underground. Rainer was a fantastic guide. We loved the Hotel Lancelot and the location could not have been better chosen. Funny, knowledgeable and always helpful. Hotel Lancelot was a great hotel in the middle of old Rome & a wonderful base for visiting the sites. Also we will be looking for other Rick Steves' tours that meet our needs. "I have to say seeing the Pope and able to get a nice picture was great but the truth is the whole seven days with everyone and the locals, food sites with guides was a WOW! We have been to Europe before, but not for a while and never on a tour. A wonderful time! ▲ Baths of Diocletian/Basilica S. Maria degli Angeli Once ancient Rome's immense public baths, now a Michelangelo church. Once our tour started, we enjoyed our included meals and shared dining information with our fellow travelers. 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. Then going to the Vatican Museums. Nina and Francesca were great guides. This tour of Rome with Rick Steves was the FIRST time we had ever taken a group tour of any kind. We went with another couple that were friends of ours and we had a very nice trip. Loved how this tour hits major sights but starts with a visit at the amazing San Clemente where there were almost no tourists. "Attending the Papal Audience and see the Pope. There were so many wow moments, everyday brought a new one. We were 4 members of our family touring Rome, we called it a sister trip. "Galleria Borghese and Vatican Museums - based on presentation provided by the local guides!". "The "wow" moment for me was being there to see the pope on Wednesday morning and being at the Vatican that day.". Well, the experience was exceeded!! Also include more break/bathroom time and not have to choose between seeing things or eating and bathroom. I loved Nina, she really cracked the whip. Francesca is a treasure trove of fabulous information. We were sponges absorbing new and amazing experiences every day.". Save. My second "wow" moment was the food tour. Hard to choose one moment. Never been a tour person , but this experience with Rick Steve's tours was awesome. Well balanced itinerary. It set the perfect framework for understanding everything else we would see throughout the week". I really enjoyed the visit to the Jewish Quarter and the synagogues along with the "foodie" tour of Tresevere. "I had been to Rome before so I had seen the Colosseum and Vatican, so although I learned so much on the tour about the biggies I didn't get the same Wow that I did the 1st time. "My favorite 'wow' moment was the Borghese Gallery Tour with Francesca's thoughtful insights.". As well, Francesca and Paulo were excellent guides. Only negative are the unethical cab drivers in Rome. Everyday was just such a different way to look at Rome yet woven into one piece. Stephanie was excellent and the local guides were brilliang, especially Francesca. That was a lot of fun and the pork we had was FANTASTIC. They made our experience so interesting! They sounded like angels.". Headed back this … And this experience was everything we wanted it to be. Enjoyed all the sites and info we received. Personally, the gladiator entrance into the Colosseum and the Pauline Napoleon reclining statue in the Borghese Museum.". Exceeded my expectations. If, however, you're spending four days or more in Rome, the extra information in Rick Steves Rome can be worthwhile. Felt like we took in all Rome can offer in a jam packed week. Visits to the "newer" sites like the Vatican, Sistine Chapel and all the other churches and art museums were also spectacular. La Carbonara . Walking into the Colosseum from the tunnel the gladiators used was awe inspiring. I was pleased with our hotel, our guide who managed the group, the guides that gave us a deeper sense of Rome, and the sights, sounds, and tastes. Excellent guide!". Also loved the night-time stroll the first evening!". Very positive energy throughout the tour. Without them I would have overlooked and missed a lot. They brought the art and history of Rome alive! My husband and I have picture taking contests (although he won't admit it because he copies my spots!) If you're looking for a guided tour to see the sights, I would recommend looking elsewhere. Our guide Stephanie treated us like family and went out of her way to show us not only the sites but the cultural nuances of this historic city. So fun! After breakfast, we'll ride the metro back in time to ancient Rome. Second would have to be the Colosseum which is such an engineering marvel. I have always wanted to see Rome and the trip did not disappoint. I would most certainly recommend a tour!! THe guide for several specific tours, Franchesca, was also excellent. They made the city easy to move round in. The churches of Rome were awe inspiring! It was hot, chaotic and intimidating. We saw some amazing things, but it wasn't until our tour began that we could begin to grasp the true meaning of what we were seeing. Everything about the trip was exceptional: food, lodging, tours, tour leaders, participants, timing, promptness, sight planning and execution. This was a special trip for my husband and I as we were celebrating meeting in Rome 50 years ago. Rick StevesÕ Walks and Tours are available for must-see locations throughout London, Paris, Rome, Florence, Venice, Amsterdam, Vienna, Budapest, Athens, and Istanbul. Packed with indispensable tips and recommendations from America's expert on Europe, Rick Steves' Tour: Borghese Gallery, Rome is a tour … The trip was a wonderful blend of together and alone time which was appreciated since I was in Rome to also visit with my nephew. Everything was wonderful. And finally, standing on the rooftop patio of the hotel at midnight on New Year's Eve and seeing fireworks all over the city was magical and priceless.". ANOTHER fabulous RS experience--Thanks! recommendations, it has good seating inside and out. My husband and I loved everything about the tour: the laid-back feeling combined with absolute confidence that all would go well were wonderful. "The Roman Colosseum and the Baroque Art". The crowds were unbearable. The first of two back-to back Rick Steves' Tours (and first ever guided tour) and our first visit to Rome, we loved every minute of this adventure! I won't be returning to Rome again, and value my previous two trips there as there were far fewer tourists. ©2021 Rick Steves' Europe, Inc. | My friends and family can't believe how close we were to the Pope. From the Renaissance and Baroque eras, you'll marvel at St. Peter's Basilica, the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, and Borghese Gallery. Packed with indispensable tips and recommendations from AmericaÕs expert on Europe, Rick Steves' Walk: Heart of Rome is a tour guide in your pocket--and on your smartphone. Art, History, Architecture, Culture, Religion, Food, and Community. Having it be a beautiful weather event was a gift too. This is a moderately active tour! On personal time, I saw Michelangelo's Moses at St. Peter in Chains, as recommend in the RS book. Organized, professional, friendly! It was an inspiring moment. "Walking into the Colosseum and into the Forum.". With Rick's tours you carry your own bag and must travel light. The hotel was a delight, and the service was exceptional. I am not even Catholic, but it was special. The itinerary was well planned out with lots to see and do but with ample free time to explore on our own. 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. I stepped out of the subway the first day and the Coliseum was in front of me. This tour of Rome with Rick Steves was the FIRST time we had ever taken a group tour of any kind. see our FAQ. Treats will include (but are not limited to) porchetta, pizza, and parmigiano. If someone can post this thread about the Rick Steves tour, why not have a forum in which different tours in different countries are discussed. It was great! The peace of this place will stay with me!". ", "I am very Art ignorant. They were actually able to tie together 2000 years of Roman history including all of the sites in and around Rome in a way that was literally life changing for my family.". Nina was very professional and full of energy. These guides were also great teachers thereby allowing us to see more and thus enjoy more making this trip truly a life changing experience for my family. The people in our group were AMAZING! I learned more independent travel skills. "All of our guide Francsca's comments. The members of the group were very pleasant and interesting. 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. The tour was fantastic and no waiting time to get in. One was the maps hall. The trainee who accompanied us was wonderful and we wished she was our tour guide instead. We'll meet at our hotel at 3 p.m. this afternoon. I feel that on the days you go to places that require a purchased ticket(Coliseum and the Vatican) those need more time to explore on your own or more time given to explore with tour guide. Our hotel was a perfect location. I was particularly happy that all the sights were fairly close to each other, or just a short trip by bus or tram. This tour was marred by unseasonably rainy weather. That's not a criticism of the tour, it's just how I am. ▲▲▲ Borghese Gallery Bernini sculptures and paintings by Caravaggio, Raphael, and Titian in a Baroque palazzo. It was a great tour, and our firs Rick Steves tour. The other was the porchetta. The Bernini statue of the man carrying his father & his son holding onto his leg, truly brought tears to my eyes.". ▲▲▲ Capitoline Museums Ancient statues, mosaics, and expansive view of Forum. Los Angeles. No waiting in lines. I can't think of a better way to see Rome than with your tour. They were dry gracious and accommodating. This was our first fully guided tour; and it exceeded my expectations in every measure! 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. If we had not had that opportunity my WOW was seeing and hearing about Bernini's Sculptures.". "Francesca and her knowledge and way to look at Architecture, sculpture and paintings. Each day was planned well and was full of excitement. Very relaxing with an excellent itinerary of key points of interest. The included meals were excellent and we were never concerned about transportation. Expert and friendly guides and a great group of traveling companions - definitely time well spent, as I saw and learned an great deal. She brought ancient Rome alive, opened my eyes to details, and made our visit to the ancient sites so meaningful. And the food was delicious! I've been back home a week and can't stop thinking about Rome! I have read and watched several Rick Steves books and programs and have found it very informative. An outstanding whirl wind tour of Rome; all of the sites visited and presented by Ben were perfect for a 7 day tour. He is the host of a public television series, and a public radio travel show, and … Answer 91 of 141: I know that escorted tours are frowned upon here, but the stress of a DIY vacation is starting to wear on us. What else could I ask for? I was surprised that about half the guests were first-timers also. For example, we would have spent many hours standing on line for both the Vatican museums and getting into St. Peter's, so we would not have been able to view both in one day without this tour. "Seeing the Bernine sculptures with our local guide Francesca.". ". You should be able to climb stairs with your suitcase and get around town walking on tours for several hours. agreed we made the correct decision t, "Every day was a 'wow moment". Francesca, our other tour guide was also wonderful. After that tour, Ben took those of us who were interested for a walk through the gardens and to a place that overlooked the city. The smaller group we had made it enjoyable and we got to meet very nice people. They showed us how the city of Rome has grown and reinvented itself over the millennia. 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. ▲▲▲ Colosseum Huge stadium where gladiators fought. In general the Vatican was a sensory overload though. ▲ Trevi Fountain Baroque hot spot into which tourists throw coins to ensure a return trip to Rome. The art told us a story and Francesca taught us the language to understand what the art was saying.". Rick Steve's tour is the best way to see Rome for the first time. There is a lot of walking which will limit some people. I was skeptical about whether we "needed" a tour group, as we've traveled elsewhere in Europe just fine on our own. The 7 - Day tour of Rome was outstanding. I was not disappointed. "Walking into St. Peter's Basilica was unforgettable. Nina, Francesca, Ludvica were our delightful guides in Rome & all three were polite, knowledgeable, friendly, and professional. We, Janet and I, both were excited to see things that we had read about our entire lives. Our guide, Julian, was competent, knowledgeable and kept our safety as prioritized as he did our pleasure in exploring this great city. Our tour guide Stephanie was outstanding. If you're only spending a few days in Rome, as part of a longer trip in Italy, the Rome chapter of either Italy guidebook is all you're likely to need. 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. The "personal" touches, the extra guides (from and living in Rome), the knowledge of the area and sites was beyond excellent. "Ostia Antica, comfortable hotel, Saint Clemens & our tour guides Franchesca & Sarah.". "THE TRAFFIC WAS FUN TO WATCH, EACH PERSON WAS AGGRESSIVE TO GET IN LINE, BUT SHOWED PATIENCE AND WILLINGNESS TO LET OTHERS IN. I loved the local neighborhood tour and eating in the Trastevere area. Our free time was a blessing too. I especially enjoyed the Sistine Chapel, our day trip to Ostia Antica, and seeing the Pope.". I'm not an extrovert and was afraid I might have to interact too much with people; With Rick's tours you carry your own bag and must travel light. "Too many to choose from, but our tour of the Galleria Borghese was my highlight. The tour of Rome was great. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. A day full of impact seeing the sites up close.". (46:24), Sightseeing in the Ancient World We liked staying in one place and each day was a good balance of structured and free time. That being said, the local guide was excellent and knowledgeable, and the two hours that you are allowed to stay we were able to hit all the highlights.". We traveled over my birthday. 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. ", Our first Rick Steves Tour and our first planned tour except cruising. ▲▲ Museo dell'Ara Pacis Shrine marking the beginning of Rome's Golden Age. Sarah and Franchesca were awesome. I am so glad that was part of the tour. ", My wife and I enjoyed our tour of Rome and our accommodations at the Hotel Lancelot. Bernini made exquisite sculptures with attention to many small, intricate details, filled with body action and animated faces projecting the look of being alive. Viewing the ancient ruins of Rom for the first time after seeing them in countless pictures and movies was a once in a lifetime experience. Exploring Bosnia by Rick Steves Audio Europe published on 2020-09-29T00:19:34Z Art of Rome by Rick Steves Audio Europe published on 2020-09-29T00:18:21Z Guide to the Netherlands by Rick Steves Audio Europe published on 2020-09-29T00:17:47Z. Our tour guide, Karin Kibby, was exceedingly gracious, assuring group cohesion and organization, creating a tour "family". San Clemente was such a surprise, such a gem. Reiner was a fun and knowledgeable guide and Francesca was wonderfully passionate about Rome. Francesca had such a unique and approachable style that made the art and architecture so accessible. I would think you could get all you need for the Colosseum/Forum/Palatine Hill from the Rick Steves guide book and audio tour though if you want to save money. Our Rome "family" was great. 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! My wife and I were absolutely THRILLED with our group tour of Rome! "St. Peter's Basilica. We felt a freedom to just experience the grandeur of Rome without having to plan, coordinate, book and then monitor all of the details. But, because I had hurt my Achilles tendon a month before the trip, every step I took hurt, taking away from the enjoyment of the experience. The explanation of the history was very informative.". Seeing the Colosseum lit up at night was spectacular! I really enjoyed how our primary tour guide (Nina) was punctual, knowledgeable and interested in how much we enjoyed each day of the tour. The friendliness and information that came from our tour guide, Nina, as well as the three local guides we had was awesome! I really got a sense of how ancient the times were when it was intact. And, along the way, every walk included a church, a ruin, a museum, great food, and always a moment of amazing reflection!!!!! I wept. I'm glad we planned an additional two nights in Rome both before and after the tour. The combination of excellent guides, ease of access and abundance of free time worked very well. The best tour I have ever taken. 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. We especially appreciated the little surprises RS tours seem to add. Our tours don't include airfare, so your flight arrangements and transfers are completely up to you. After a week, I still can't put it into words. I appreciated having the experts choose the location of the hotel and the sites most worth seeing. Even throwing us a Halloween Dinner Party! I was so excited to be going to Rome- my first trip abroad. "When Nina used the phrase "winds of change." Loved hotel and service. We truly enjoyed each others company. I enjoyed my tour very much. "I had 2 wow moments - one was in the Borgheshe Gallery - being present when the "David with head of Goliath" by Caravaggio was rehung and the other was walking into the St. Maria Majorie Church.". A shared tour is a smart way to experience the sights, while meeting up with fellow Rick Steves readers. Ben our guide was such a pleasure. a Rick Steve's tour.". While traveling in Rome and once our trip was finished, my wife and I Most days are moderately paced with 2–8 miles of walking, including some hills and stairs. But walking into the Colisseo literally took my breath away. Given that we were in Italy on this trip a total of 5 weeks (4 weeks of independent travel and 1 week of group tour in Rome), our time with the Rick Steves tour was a special joy! We've used and told all our friends to use Rick Steves Travel guides for years; but, we believed todays Rome, with its deep historical context and long lines to get in anywhere, would require greater care. ▲▲ Catacombs Underground tombs, mainly Christian, some outside the city. Rick produces a best-selling guidebook series, a public television series, and a public radio show, and organizes small-group tours that take over 30,000 travelers to Europe annually. We felt that the trip had a nice balance of Ancient Rome, Italian Art, Italian Art and religious Rome. There were multiple people in our group who have been on tours with your group, "Going to Vatican City was my favorite if I had to choose just one event. I was glad to find another woman solo-traveler and we buddied up, eating all non-included dinners together. My wife and I also enjoyed the company of the other travelers in our group. The other travelers were fun and interesting and everybody was accommodating. Everyone was friendly and adventurous. This was after our guide explained to us about experiencing art in situ. We had an outstanding week in Rome. The knowledge I learned throughout the tour will make it easier for me to visit Rome again with the confidence to do it on my own and know how to move around and experience Rome like a local. "I fully expected the Sistine Chapel to be the "Wow" moment of the tour. The tour was wonderful from the meet-and-greet meeting to our farewell dinner.. "There were so many "wow" moments that it's difficult to choose only one. 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