In May / June 2017 we will cruise with the Celebrity Reflection in the western Mediterranean. Cruises in the Mediterranean are always special experiences. There are many beautiful regions and ports, and even after several Mediterranean tours we find destinations that we don't know or would like to see again.
From Germany you can get to the departure ports quickly and usually cheaply by plane. And the weather isn't that bad either, although we recommend mid-April to mid-October for a cruise in the Mediterranean.
Before the cruise - overnight in Rome
Our cruise with the Celebrity Reflection begins and ends in Civitavecchia, the port of Rome. We use this opportunity for an overnight stay in the Eternal City. We fly to Fiumicino and take the express train from the airport to Roma-Termini station. The express is about twice as expensive as the regional train, but we don't have to change trains. This is more convenient, especially with luggage. We booked a room in the Ludovisi Palace hotel. The hotel is located near Via Veneto and the Spanish Steps in a well-kept district and we really like it. We don't stay long, the sun is shining and Rome is already waiting for us.
From the Spanish Steps to the Capitol
It's Sunday and Rome is full of people. It's not just tourists, the Romans are also out and about in their city today.
We go down the Spanish Steps and slowly stroll along Via del Corso towards Piazza Venezia. We enjoy our first espresso in one of the small street cafés. Then we continue directly towards the Vittoriano (Altare della Patria), the huge monument to King Vittorio Emanuele II. Right next to the Vittoriano we climb the stairs to Capitol Square and enjoy the view over the Roman Forum. This is so great in Rome: the historical sites are not far apart. You go through history, so to speak, all the time.
Roman Forum and Palatine Hill
Mouth of truth
Our next destination is the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, which has a particularly beautiful campanile and in whose vestibule is the Bocca della Verità, the mouth of truth. This is an ancient mask that is said to close when a liar puts his hand into it. We can't check that, unfortunately the church is no longer open. For us a reason to come back.
Along the Tiber
We follow the banks of the Tiber past the Marcello Theater, the synagogue and then walk through the Jewish quarter with its many small restaurants.
Shortly before the Pantheon we admire the Obelisco della Minerva in the piazza of the same name. There are 13 ancient obelisks in Rome, this is the second smallest at just under 5,5 m high. Years ago we discovered a small restaurant behind the Pantheon, in which mostly locals and only a few tourists hang out. Food and wine are delicious, and it's been "our pizzeria" ever since. We walk back to the hotel through Rome at night, of course past the Fontana di Trevi. As already said, there are many places of interest close together in Rome.
Continue reading: Day 1 - Embarkation in Civitavecchia