Rome was made for walking; it offers warm, picturesque streets and traffic is terrible in any case, so it is more of a compulsion than an option. Even though I have received the blessing of a monthly public transportation card, I choose to wear down my espadrilles for at least a couple of hours everyday. In this, often directionless, strolls, I have stumbled into unforgettable spectacles, composed of music, people and classic roman background of cobblestone roads, marble buildings and orange walls. There are four streets in particular, for which I will gladly go astray:
I have the pleasure of wandering this street very often as it is very close to where we are staying. However, I always seem to find a new place to eat or sit down for a cappuccino. Being that it is so close to the Vatican, it is no surprise to see a nun making her way to a Papal blessing, or a priest shopping for garments in the several religious stores there. I have even stumbled into a procession. My favorite spot is the small square hidden next to the Hedera Gelateria, where one can always find children playing during the day, or occasional night concerts. It is also the perfect place to get a gelato and make your way to St Peter’s Square to catch the sunset.
This street is a short, narrow road between the Piazza di Spagna and the Piazza del Popolo. It’s cobblestone and hanging plants make it one of the most romantic scenes in Rome. Here, I ran into a lavishly dressed couple taking wedding pictures; the photographer did not have to try too hard to get perfect shots. Margutta has art galleries side-to-side, as well as beautiful restaurants and the perfect fountain to fill your bottle during hot summer afternoons. The Fatamorgana Corso is only a couple of blocks away, and I strongly recommend accompanying your stroll with one of their mouthwatering gelatos.
Via Di Sant’Onofrio
I ended up in this street when taking a wrong turn on my way to Trastevere. More than a street, Sant’Onofrio it is scalinata, and not a precisely a short one, as it leaves you rather far up in Gianicolo Hill. I will accept that I was out of breath by the time I reached the top, and further breathless when I turned around to admire the view of the Roman skyline. Unlike the Spanish steps, tourists do not frequent this hidden scalinata, so it is the perfect spot to sit down and enjoy some peace and quiet. The way up is also very picturesque, with orange walls and green doors.
Viale della Trinità dei Monti
This street was my reward after bravely climbing the Spanish Steps. Despite the steps being crowded by tourists day and night, this street, which leads to Villa Borghese, is hauntingly quiet. From its soaring height, it offers, in my opinion, the best view of Rome. It has a wide parapet, where it is safe to sit and meditate for as long as needed. The fountain in the back makes for the perfect background noise. You may continue down this road and reach the top of the Fontana della Dea Di Roma, in Piazza del Popolo.