When you're black and poor, you gotta be hardcore.
“You don’t even have to see Rome; you just have to eat, haha.”
– Random Tourist
Traveling takes not only effort, but it involves a necessary amount of work. Not only do you have to plan ahead, such as booking your mode of transportation and accommodations beforehand, but you also must have some sort of itinerary in mind during your stay in your country-of-choice. But that ain’t stop me from travelin’, hahaha. Now that finals are officially over, my friend and I decided to spend our post-finals holiday in Rome for 5 ½ days. It was the perfect place to go to, considering the fact that we’ve never been there, there’s an abundance of things to do and see, and the weather is reasonable, unlike Belgium (lmao, no tea no shade).
For those who’ve never stepped foot in Rome, this post is for you. A city of art, Rome is the place to visit if you’re interested in history, food, ancient architecture, and eye-candy men. I swear I was sweating bullets when the waiters talked to me – they so fione!
Duo Traveling is Eye-Opening
I’ve never traveled with one other person; with groups of people, yes. But never with just one person by my side. At first, I hated it when I arrived in Rome. It was lowkey frustrating because we both had various ideas in mind for our trip so compromising was a challenge. Group traveling versus duo-traveling are completely dissimilar. When traveling in a group, you’re free to break up the group based on preferences; when traveling in as a pair, you kinda have to stay committed to each other. Traveling with my friend Maria opened my eyes to compromise, a quality that I thought I was familiar with. Of course, it was a brilliant trip, as you can tell by my Instagram feed. But the first two days was quite unsettling; there was an aura of subtle discomfort between the two of us due to miscommunication and lack of compromise. Instead of carrying on with the trip with this sort of attitude, we communicated and worked it out. The following days improved rapidly and we continued to enjoy the rest of our trip! If you plan on traveling with a friend, make sure it’s someone that you know you’ll have a good time with!
Itinerary is a MUST
Ya’ll are probably wondering: “What the hell is an itinerary?” Basically, it’s a travel plan; people just like being extra lmao. Anyway, if you’re planning on spending a couple of days in Rome, I suggest planning how you’ll spend each day. Rome is huge and at every corner, there’s literally always something to see. I’m a spontaneous type of gyal and planning my trips are kind of tedious so I usually like to avoid it and just go with the flow. But when it came to Rome; I couldn’t avoid creating an itinerary. Below is an example of what my itinerary consisted of:
Friday, 02 February 2018
Late Morning (11am) – Mid-Afternoon (4pm)
• Trevi Fountain
• Spanish Steps
• Piazza di Spagna
Early Evening (5pm)
• 2-hour free tour of Rome
• Relax and prepare for the following day
Your itinerary doesn’t have to fancy; just precise and a bit flexible. The last thing you want is a schedule – no need to put pressure on yourself during your holiday!
Book Tickets Online
Although the attractions in Rome are either free or fair-priced, I highly recommend purchasing your tickets online to avoid the queues at all the major attractions. Before flying to Rome, Maria and I communicated via facetime and met up at the nearest coffee shop to purchase tickets for the Vatican + Sistine Chapel, Colosseum and Roman Forum + Palatino Hill, and to the Galleria Borghese, which made planning our trip much more efficient. If you’re visiting Rome for a couple of days, it’s best to do your research on certain monuments and fees so that it makes planning easier. The last thing you want is to find out that you could’ve bought tickets to avoid a 3 hour-queue that’s two blocks long, lol.
Be Prepared to EAT
Rome is exquisite. Every two hours, my stomach would growl and that’s when I knew it. was. time. to. eat. The weather in Rome was quite nice; it mainly stayed in the 50s (15-17°C), so we walked everywhere and burnt a lot of calories. Eating in Rome is ethereal because it’s rich with taste, but not fattening at the same time. I love to eat; anything I could get my hands on to chew is fine with me! Not to mention that food is fairly affordable in Rome (depends on which restaurant you go to), so you don’t have to feel bad about spending your money on that 6-euro pizza. As long as I wasn’t hungry, everything was gucci, lol.
Rome Cannot Be Done in a Day
Put some respeck on Rome and stay for at least 3 days. I’m a “no more than 2 days” type of gal because I’m basic, broke, hungry, and I love free at any opportunity, haha. But to be fair, Rome is a “vacation” city. You can’t just pop up in Rome like “hey I’m gonna see all the attractions in a day” because it’s impossible. Look, I tried.
It’s a city that will leave you in complete awe; it’ll draw you in with its breathtaking architecture, aesthetically pleasing city life, mouth-watering food, and most importantly, the amiable people that give the city its life. So give yourself at least 3 days to soak Rome in and if you have the opportunity to stay longer, go for it. I mean fuck it, YOLO.