----- Rome, Italy ---------------
My trip to Italy only lasted a few days, but I spent those days in Rome. I have visited Rome twice in the past, but I came to love Rome and enjoy it more than other times. Who really helped me was Guilia our AirBnB host whom was completely awesome and so friendly. She recommended the best places to eat and other sights to see. She recommended a few restaurants where locals go, and where I can get a truly authentic and delicious dinner. She did not disappoint. She recommended Hosteria al 31 which was great, but Trattoria Giggi was our favorite! We were staying in an isolated alley next to an opera school literally only a few blocks from the Spanish Steps and a block away from Trattoria Giggi. Giggi was great not just because of its location, but it in my opinion had the BEST food in Rome. I also went to Roma Sparita inadvertently made famous by Anthony Bourdain. However, Giggi was better!
This time in Rome I spent more time wandering the streets, and finding hidden gems. Before dining at Roma Sparita I spoke with a local who recommended his favorite place for coffee. His choice was Roscioli only a couple blocks from Largo di Torre Argentina. The coffee here was very good! My favorite spot for coffee in Rome was what Mario Batali recommends as the best, Tazza d'Oro. The coffee here was AMAZING and it was the cheapest I found anywhere in Europe. I was disgusted by how much other places charge for coffee that is inferior. Tazza is where I went EVERY morning for breakfast where I could enjoy a cappuccino and a brioche for only 2 Euros!!!
Rome is a very beautiful city. I took the opportunity to visit other areas on this trip that I had never seen before. I wandered the streets of Rome admiring the architecture and colors of the buildings. I passed by the peaceful Via Marguta made famous by the movie Roman Holiday. The entrance to Gregory Peck's apartment Via Marguta 51 was sadly closed for construction. Wandering away from Via Marguta we decided to loiter around the Spanish Steps for a while observing people from around the world take in the Roman magic. As we ascended the Spanish Steps we made our way to the Villa Borghese a large park above Piazza del Popolo. We wandered the Umbrella Pine clad park visiting various sites within the Villa Borghese. We posed at the Tempietto de Diana, and strolled around the Tempio di Esculapio located on a small lake. The park was a true delight to visit.
As my trip came to an end here I was sad to leave. I will really miss the mornings waking up and listening to the opera, and walking to the Pantheon the get my breakfast at Tazza. I really grew to love Rome, its people, food, coffee, fashion and wonderful living history. I do long to return here again. I could actually see myself living here if the opportunity arises.