Ideas on pre-day in Rome before Viva Italia ABD

Discussion in 'Adventures By Disney' started by gmc824, Apr 13, 2019 at 9:38 PM.

  1. gmc824

    gmc824 Earning My Ears

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    My daughter and I will be going on the May 14th Viva Italia ABD, and are set to arrive a day early at 7:15am local time. I'm guessing that we won't be able to get into our hotel room for our pre-night stay until sometime that afternoon. We're trying to either figure out things to fill our day starting very early in the morning, or purchase the night prior so our room is ready when we arrive. I'd rather not have to get the extra night, as it seems foolish getting it just for the day. So my question is, does anyone have some tips or suggestions for a full day in Rome (starting around 8:00am and lasting till at least 3:00pm)? Thanks in advance for any help!
     
  2. starry_solo

    starry_solo DIS Veteran

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    After you drop off your luggage at the hotel, perhaps visit a museum or gardens that the tour wont take you to?
     
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  4. OKW Lover

    OKW Lover Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle. DIS Lifetime Sponsor

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    Where does ABD stay in Rome now? When we did it a few years ago it was the Bernini Bristol, but I'm pretty sure that has changed.

    You mention arriving at 7:15 am. Assuming you are coming from the US that's probably the time your flight lands at FCO. In that case it will be about 9:00 by the time you get to the hotel. Take care of the check-in formalities and leave your luggage with bell services then head out to find a good latte. The folks at the hotel will be happy to recommend a place. After that, consider a walk through the Borghese Gardens.

    Also check out all the little shops along the way. The smaller the shop the more interesting. But try to avoid the obvious tourist shops advertising cheap t-shirts, posters of the pope and that stuff. On one of our visits to Rome we found a fantastic leather shop where my wife and some friends got some custom made bags. Its Grecale Leather at Via della Purificazione, 17, 00187 Rome https://grecalebags.com.

    About noon, stop in a sidewalk restaurant and have a light meal. Perhaps pizza? Or pasta. and a glass of the house red wine. After that head back to the hotel and hope your room is ready so you can unpack and catch a short nap before the welcome dinner.

    Viva Italia was our first non-us ABD as well as our first ever visit to Europe. We throughly enjoyed it and have been back to Italy several times since. Please do a trip report. We would love to follow along.
     
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  5. Donalyn

    Donalyn DIS Veteran

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    We are on the 6/11 trip. We get in the late morning of the 10th, so have a little over 24 hours on our own. I think that matches your schedule, but I may be reading it incorrectly.

    Our plan is to go to the hotel, drop bags off and hopefully go for a walk. I've thought about the Borghese Gardens and a quick lunch. Then I was hoping that we'd be able to use the pool at the hotel to help freshen up a little. By then, we will be able to get into our room and prep for our evening activity, which I'm thinking will be a food tour.
     
  6. gmc824

    gmc824 Earning My Ears

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    Thanks to each of you for the replies. The idea of Borghese Gardens sounds good, followed by lunch. If anyone has other thoughts, please pass them along too.
     
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  7. abdgeek

    abdgeek DIS Veteran

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    I second the other recommendations about going to Borghese Gardens. It’s been awhile since I did this ABD, but if I remember correctly the Gran Melia has a shuttle that leaves hourly that will drop you off and pick you up close to one of the shopping squares. I believe it’s near the Spanish Steps and there are restaurants in the area. From there it’s a short walk to the gardens. Borghese is huge and while they have signs, you may want to print off a map ahead of time. I went to the Villa Borghese museum and enjoyed it on the day I arrived while I waited for my room to be ready. There are also some sights to see near the hotel and beautiful views of Rome, but I didn’t get around to seeing them. I wasn’t crazy about the uphill climb required to do so.
     
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  8. Woodview

    Woodview DIS Veteran

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    Your Plane Lands at 7.15 am Then add an Hour for collecting luggage & Passport Check

    So it will be at least 8.15 am at Kerbside then another 30 min drive to your hotel

    You might be able to leave your luggage at the front desk . You will be tired & you might like a light breakfast.

    Find out if there is a " Hop on Hop off " bus . If there is you could do this ....... a full circuit . without getting Off

    Please NOTE to Bring a European Plug or adapter ( a 2 pin Round ) & A Chip & Pin bank Card
     
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  9. Cousin Orville

    Cousin Orville Inventor of Air Cooling

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    Looks like you're staying at the Gran Melia? If so, it's close to Castel Sant' Angelo or Piazza Novona. Those are 2 good areas to walk around.
     
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  10. OKW Lover

    OKW Lover Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle. DIS Lifetime Sponsor

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    Great suggestion. Rome has several HOHO bus lines. I don't think there's really a difference among them. We took one last month and it seemed that at every stop there was a bus from a competing line.

    Another suggestion for those arriving more that a day earlier, a twilight culinary tour of Trastevere. Our ABD group did this several years ago and it was really, really fun. https://www.eatingeurope.com/rome/twilight-trastevere/
     
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  11. LoveMickey

    LoveMickey <font color=red>Can't wait to feel the "wonder" of

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    Another suggestion for later in the day is a walking food tour. We did it and went to a different area of Rome than the ABD went to. We did it with a bunch of other ABDers.
     
  12. mapsd

    mapsd Mouseketeer

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    Q: First time in Rome/Europe & how comfortable are you navigating European cities?

    I'm a fan of doing anything outside on arrival day. I think it helps reset your jetlag clock.
    I'd definitely head to the hotel first and ask about early check-in. Don't call ahead, just show up (harder to say no in person). If you're lucky, they'll have a room and you can freshen up.
    At worst, they should agree to hold your bags & concierge can help with directions
    Borghese is a good suggestion.
    Castel Sant' Angelo is closer and gives great views of the city/Vatican. No need to take a tour, just pay for entry. Nice little coffee shop on the roof too.
    Piazza Novona is nearby too (I like it better at night though)
    Campo de Fiori is close and has a great open-air market during the day. Can wander and sample foods & lemoncello. It has wild night-life in the evenings.
     
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  13. gmc824

    gmc824 Earning My Ears

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    Great suggestions from everyone! Definitely going to try for early check-in. Looking into each idea beyond that. Will probably try a few since we’ve got a day and a half before the ABD starts.
     
  14. TravelJunkieHubby

    TravelJunkieHubby Earning My Ears

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    We did Viva Italia last summer and tried to stay out the first day as well. We did the Museo Leonardo da Vinci experience near the Vatican. It’s touristy but they had some decent recreations of da Vinici’s inventions and it wasn’t too tiring for my kids. It’s walking distance from the Gran Melia.

    Castel San’angelo is a definite must. It’s also very close to the Gran Melia and ABD skips it.
     
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  15. 2-pointdoe

    2-pointdoe Mouseketeer

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    We had a car service pick us up at the hotel and take us to tour (they made all of the arrangements) vesuvius and pompeii and then bring us back that night.
     
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  16. pjacobi

    pjacobi DIS Veteran

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    Most hotels will allow you to drop off luggage in the morning and they will hold it in a secure place until your room is ready in the afternoon.

    On the first day in Europe you will be really jet lagged! To fight it, stay outside in the cool morning air. In the afternoon, return to hotel and your room will probably be ready. Take a quick nap, but set alarm clock so that you will be forced to get up for dinner.

    -Paul
     
  17. mapsd

    mapsd Mouseketeer

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    When we did Viva Italia, we were really ambitious and upon arrival, dropped our bags @ the ABD hotel, took a carry-on bag & rode the trains to Sorrento. We stayed in Sorrento for 3 nights and did the Amalfi Coast & Pompeii on our own.

    Another thing I'd consider doing is walking to St Peter's & climbing the dome. It's not doable as part of the ABD visit to the Vatican and the timing would be good. You could do a late entry into St Peter's when the lines are shorter & go right to the dome climb. You'll have the option to ride an elevator part way or do all stairs. On the way back down, there is a gift shop on the roof of the basilica where you can have a glass of wine or a coffee and look down into St Peter's square.
    It's a really unique experience. I actually prefer climbing the dome in Florence. For that, you need to book a reservation on line while still at home.
     

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