On our third full day in Rome we decided to head to the Vatican in the hope of heading up St Peter’s Basilica to get the classic shots of St Peter’s Square. What we didn’t perhaps account for was that on the day we decided to go, it just so happened that the Pope was in the house celebrating his Jubilee and so thousands of people had made their pilgrimages to the Vatican to come and see him.
So the Basilica was closed and the Vatican museum was totally packed out with people. We decided to give the crowds a miss and hired a Buzz car from nearby Buzz4tours. Having seen people whizzing round the city in the little electric cars we decided it would be a fun way to get around and explore on our last full day.
I have three words for our Buzz car experience… SO MUCH FUN!
With Buzz4tours you can hire a small, two person electric car (max speed 40km/h) and drive around all the sites by following the directions on the iPad that’s included in the Buzz car. The fun of trying to negotiate the crazy Italian drivers while seeing some of the most famous monuments in Rome provided hours of fun. You can take the Buzz car down lots of the small cobbled alleys and find hidden gems along the way! We even ended up driving through Piazza Navona, much to the delight of the many tourists taking snaps of us! I’d definitely recommend this to anyone, it made for the perfect 5 hours (and only cost 60 euros!)
One of the highlights of our Buzz car adventure was driving up to the Garden of Oranges – Parco Savello, where there is a beautiful view looking out across the city. Hiring a car made the hilltop garden really easy to access. It’s such a romantic spot with benches to sit back and relax beneath the shade of the orange trees as you admire the Roman skyline.
From Parco Savello you can walk to the famous Magic Keyhole – a less popular attraction with the tourists, but extremely interesting. Without completely spoiling the surprise, peering through the keyhole you will see a garden which has been curated by the Knights of Malta… I’ll say no more!
We then continued on our Buzz car adventure driving around sights including St. Angel’s Castle, Basilica of St. Mary’s in Trastevere, Tiber Island – Isola Tiberina, The Circus Maximus, The Pantheon, Piazza Navona, The Trevi Fountain, Piazza di Spagna (The Spanish Steps), Piazza del Popolo and ending back at St. Peter’s Basilica. It was a truly unique way to see the city!
Along the route, we also stopped off for lunch and later an ice cream at an old favourite!
We had so much fun driving down the bumpy cobbled alleys, tooting our horn at unsuspecting tourists and being in many funny photos! The Italian driving style is not for the faint hearted and you may end up being undertaken by a Lamborghini but that’s part of the fun isn’t it? Just try not to get onto one of the dual carriageways heading out of the city like we did!
We had a beautiful long weekend in Rome. The sun came out for us and we had a lovely time wandering around in sunshine and exploring all the sites. There is so much to see and do…. and eat! Be sure to eat copious amounts of pasta, pizza and gelato as well as trying some of the fine wines and Limoncello. If you haven’t already, check my previous two posts about our long weekend in Rome.
And if you ever pay the romantic city a visit yourself, be sure enjoy over-using the following phrase:
“When in Rome…”