Central Italy

Central Italy

Rome, Umbria and Vesuvius

autumn italyThis was short trip, together with friends, to Umbria and Vesuvius in the second part of November, 2009 . We arrived to Rome by plane. In advance, we agreed rent of apartment in the centre of the city. Apartment was located just a few hundred meters from Vatican City, river Tiber and very close to many other attractions. A few days after arrival, we rented a car to reach another points of interest outside of Rome – Vesuvius, caves of stalactites and to taste some Italian food in countryside.

Italian capital Rome

We were lucky with choice of accommodation – we found two bedroom flat offered for short term rent in Rome. Communication with landlord agent was effective, upon arrival we were met exactly as agreed before and accommodation was as good as we expected in terms of comfort, location and cleanness. I’d use this service again for sure.

romeItalian capital Rome, with its 2.7 million residents and history of more than two and a half thousand years, is like an open-air museum. Wherever you go, history is all around you – monuments, museums, churches, ancient buildings and so on. And that is why Rome is most visited place in Italy and the third most visited in the EU.

Caves of stalactites and stalagmites

After a few days spent walking on the streets of Rome, we left the city for two single-day trips. The first one was visiting Grotte di Frasassi (caves of Frasassi) in the province of Ancona. It was full-day trip because cave is located in the Nord-Easta bout 250 kilometres away from Rome  and there are no major motorways available all the way. You can see exact location of Grotte di Frasassi and our route on map.

stalactites caveCaves of Frasassi were discovered very recently – in 1971. Length of caves complex is about 13 kilometres; it consists of many “rooms”. Some part of rooms are available for visitors (caves are open for public since 1974; more than 12 million people have visited them).

You can find both stalagmites and stalactites in the caves. After a few days spent in Rome, we recognized that Umbria region (we crossed it while driving to caves) has absolutely different landscape comparing to Lazio region where Rome is located. It was really beautiful difference to be ready to return to Rome again.

Vesuvius

vesuviusOur second one-day trip was to Vesuvius volcano. We left Rome early morning driving in direction of Naples (E 45, South-East). It took no muck effort to reach Naples because of good motorway connection between two cities. However, another part of the trip was very slow because of dense population and narrow roads in surrounding area.

After visiting local winery and having some locally made snacks, reaching the top of Vesuvius was real joy. I should mention that there is only one way of getting on top for tourists not prepared for long hiking – special Vesuvio bus service (you cannot reach the top by car because it’s not allowed. Also, actually there is rather path than road allowing only off-road vehicles to climb up).

From the top of Vesuvius it was beautiful landscape all around. There is still steam coming from inside of the crater; not a huge, however interesting to see anyway. We had a bit more than hours to walk around the crater before next bus arrived to collect us and brig down to the starting point before our return to the Italian capital Rome.

autumn landscape

bridge