|Blue Rock Thrush|
My most recent three extended weekend holidays have been Florence, Paris and more recently, Rome. I have to say that, so far, my order of preference is Florence, Rome then Paris.
Well, what did it think of Rome. It was amazing... The history and architecture, are spellbinding. And the views from tops of building were impressive! Lots of walking involved to get from once area to another but that was our intention. And it's worth it... you'd miss out on the atmosphere if on a bus/car etc etc.
The bus service from the airport to the termini was good and worked efficiently.
We had bought passes for the Vatican and Sistine Chapel and this avoided many queues. Given that the new Pope has just been elected a few days before our arrival may have contributed to the vast numbers of people around and in the Vatican City. We'd also bought a Rome pass as part of the 'package' which again we had used. They may be a bit expensive but very very justified - beats queuing for hours and wasting time doing so. Going through the Vatican Museum to get to the Sistine chapel, it was packed with people; this really inhibited seeing any of the exhibits.. pity they can't limit the numbers of people going through...
We'd been warned about pickpockets but had no reason to be aware of any.. however, we'd taken some care in how we carried wallets/ purses etc. It also became very apparent that Rome is a very clean city.. no evidence of dirty or soiled streets and plenty of rubbish bins everywhere.
There's lots of 'greenery' and green spaces around Rome and one garden (the Villa Borghese) in particular provided an enjoyable interlude away from the hustle and bustle of the more popular areas.
And the Birds? Well considering it wasn't a 'birding' trip, our eventual list was quite impressive - and for me 5 lifers and Pete had 3... :D - 23 species in total (unless I've forgotten anything)
Headed Crow (lifer)
Ring-necked Parakeet (also seen nesting)
Siskins (almost common place)
Yellow Legged Gulls.. and others
Blue Rock Thrush (lifer)
Black Redstart (lifer)
Sardinian Warbler (lifer)
Other wildlife consisted of Flutters (probably a small white but difficult to tell from a distance)
and a Red Squirrel.
Would I go back.. oh yes most definitely!!
The five days accounts are here:
Day 1 We arrive in Rome
Day 2 Vatican City and Sistine Chapel
Day 3 Trevvi Fountain, Spanish Steps and Villa Borghese
Day 4 The Colliseum and the Forum
Day 5 Monday and home
(as I mention in one of the posts, Blogger has stopped the slide show, which rather slows down looking at the pictures in a larger format).