25 ideas for your “Ancient Rome” tour

Posted on Oct 3, 2023 in Arts and History, Planning Support

[edit October 2023] Most of the visitors reaching Rome have in their “must see list” what is generally called “ancient Rome“. They usually mean the archeological area in the very centre of Rome, represented by the Colosseum, Forum and Palatine Hill. But in Rome we have “ancient roman stuff” everywhere! So with this article we […]

How hot is Rome in the summer?

Posted on Aug 30, 2023 in Time out to reflect

[September 2023] Summer 2023 is almost at its end and I decided to recollect some thoughts about the “heat waves”: last July I received some calls and mails from the other side of the ocean (friends, former or future guests, journalists) asking how I was coping with the heat and if I was ok! I […]

No “must sees” tickets? Try these alternatives.

Posted on May 4, 2023 in Arts and History, Planning Support

“Everybody goes to the same handful of sites. If you just go to those sites, you’re going to have a trip that is shaped by crowds. Or you can break free from that and realise that you can study the options and choose sites that are best for you. You can go to alternative places […]

Vatican tours? We quit.

Posted on May 2, 2023 in On your own, Time out to reflect, Planning Support

When I began as a tour guide – 15 years ago – I wouldn’t say the Vatican Museums were ever empty, they were definitely busy, yet bearable and occasionally even pleasant. There are unique masterpieces in the collections, and I’m not just talking about the Sistine chapel: we also have Raphael, Botticelli, Perugino, Caravaggio, all […]

How can you trust A Friend in Rome?

Posted on Mar 23, 2023 in Time out to reflect

Let’s admit it: the problem with tourist services is that you rarely need them more than once, or surely not very often. Booking a tour is not like buying milk everyday and making your choice based on your own daily experience. You have to make an investment without really seeing nor testing what you are […]

What is an Underground Rome tour?

Posted on Mar 10, 2023 in Arts and History

When we offer a tour of “underground Rome” it can mean many different locations, as Rome has always something “below the surface”. It is surely one of the most fascinating aspects of our city. Nevertheless, not all the underground sites are appropriate for such a tour: some have very difficult (or expensive) access some are […]

Free museums? No, thanks!

Posted on Mar 10, 2023 in On your own

You might have heard that in Italy we have the so called #domenicalmuseo which means one Sunday each month (the first Sunday) most museums (all national museums and many city museums) are open for free. “Wow, that’s great news!” should be the reaction. While the real comment is “Bugger!”. Yes, it is a problem in […]

Rome outside the walls, step up to a new level

Posted on Dec 4, 2022 in On your own

With the worst timing ever, in 2019 – just before a pandemic that would have blocked world tourism for almost two years – I launched a new website connected to this one and dedicated to day trips around Rome. Before starting this new proposal, I asked myself : “do we really need another tour operator?” […]

Shopping for tours in ateliers instead of malls

Posted on Nov 22, 2022 in Time out to reflect

Do you know when supermarkets started to exist in the commercial world? In 1830 the so-called “Magazines de Nouveautés” opened in France. Soon later Macy’s opened in New York. Food stores opened in the US during WW1 and the traditional habit of single shops for different items waned after millennia. It’s easy to understand why, […]

7 ideas to be romantic in Rome

Posted on Aug 15, 2022 in On your own

Forget Paris! Rome is the city for romance: the pink sky over the ruins, the rooftop terraces, the Vespa rides, the padlocks everywhere…. If you plan a romantic journey, maybe your honeymoon or an anniversary, well, Rome has a lot to offer. Here is a non exhaustive list that we are happy to improve with […]