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Top 6 Reasons to Live in Rome!

The top 6 reasons to live in Rome.  I daydream about living abroad, a lot, and Rome, Italy is at the top of my fantasy list.  I want to live in Rome at some point in my life. Not every large city gets that sort of reaction from me. I love visiting New York City, but I would not want to live there. I also love Denver, Colorado, but prefer to live in my mountain town.  Why does Rome feel so good?  I have spent some time in this beautiful city and here are my top 6 reasons to live in Rome.

alliance between old and new architecture

The alliance between old and new in space and time.  The fascination with Roman Architecture is not new.  It has inspired artists and architects for thousands of years. And it’s the mix of the ancient ruins located next to “newer” structures (built in the 1800 or 1900s) that are creative and appealing to me.  Erica Firpo for Fathom says it well in “Everything Old is New in Rome.”  ” In Rome, discovering newness is just a matter of patience and perseverance. There is always something new going on if you just know how to look.”  The favorite Trevi Fountain recently re-opened after a lavish renovation (2016) at the hands of local company Fendi. The older generation is vibrant and strong. It is common to see an entire family eating dinner at 10am in the evening including the elders. You will see a lovely mix of young people and the older generations in piazzas, at the markets, shopping and in the churches.  There is a strong sense of family in Italy and in Rome.  Generations sharing space and time. Romans celebrate and respect their elders.

The local markets, fresh fruits, veggies and seafood.  You thought I was going to say bread and pasta, right?  Of course, the fresh baguettes and savory pasta are to_die_for.  For me, as a gluten-free pescatarian, I was looking for options that were not quite as cooked. The fresh fruit, peaches, pears and apples, are a succulent delight.  Even in the bigger cities, the produce in the small neighborhood markets was spectacular, fresh and not all the same size.  (Top 9 most colorful food markets in Rome) One small market owner said that the produce was delivered from local farms daily.  I witnessed one of these deliveries.  The streets of Rome are teeming with cars and scooters, honking and zooming about; controlled chaos.   Without hesitation, the produce delivery driver stopped right in front of the small market and started unloading his products.  A few cars honked and there were a couple of dirty looks, but the traffic rerouted itself so the delivery could be made. Fifteen minutes later he was on his way to the next market.

I was pleasantly surprised to find delicious fresh vegetable dishes and fresh flavorful seafood, shellfish, octopus, and salmon, in all the restaurants in the city. It makes sense that the seafood is fresh and plentiful giving the location of Rome, and Italy in general, to the sea.

The Water and Wine. There is much that has been said about the wine in Italy.  My experience was not so glamorous, but still incredibly enjoyable.  The local house wine (white or red) is cheap and lovely.  You will find that each restaurant has their own local brand of house wine.  Some of the wines are dry and crisp while others are fruity and fresh.  Loved this: Wine in Italy (A Nonstuffy Traveler’s Guide)

You CAN drink the water in Rome.  For a big city, the water is incredibly fresh right from the tap.  I don’t have any studies to back up my finding, but we drank the tap water and filled up our water bottles at the ancient water fountains on the street.  We found the water was refreshing and cold.  You can find more information on historic Rome aqua ducts in “Can you Drink from Rome’s Water Fountains, Really?” 

The tiny cars, scooters and public transportation.  There are a lot of people in Rome.  It’s a large city with a lot of traffic. I am fascinated by the many small cars, scooters, electric bikes and people who drive/ride them.  Scooters are very popular and at rush hour you will see men and women in suits and dresses weaving in and out of traffic, missing buses by a few inches with seemingly no fear.  It’s a fearless game to see who can at the front of traffic by the next traffic light.   It’s amazing to watch.  I don’t think I would ever have a car in Rome.  The public transportation options are convenient, cheap and dependable.  We traveled all over Rome via bus and The Metro. There will be times when it is crowded and steamy, but worth the slight discomfort.  The regional train system is an adventure and incredibly convenient. If you take the time and map it out you can likely get to most location in the country via public transportation.

small fiat cars in rome

The people and piazzas.   The Romans love to socialize. The culture is very much centered around friends and family with many gathering spots, large and small, around the city.  It is like that in all of Italy.  Piazza’s will be found in every neighborhood.  One area I have not visited yet, but that is on my radar for the next trip, is the Jewish Ghetto. It’s a hidden gem at this point, but popular with the locals. One of our favorite hangout spots to drink wine and mingle with the locals was Piazza Madonna dei Monti.  We enjoyed an open-air dinner authentic Italian dinner at La Bottega del Caffe.  The Piazza is the neighborhood’s gently sloping, cobblestone-paved living room, where children play soccer after school, 20-somethings smoke while talking on cellphones and grandmas sit together, comparing notes about the remarkable occupants of their baby carriages. Piazza Navona is a favorite with visitors and a lively, colorful gathering spot with the famous Neptune Fountain.

Romance.  The Romans are in love. The late night culture lends itself to candle lit dinners in open-air cafes and stealing kisses while watching the sunset at Passeggiate del Pincio (Pincio Hill).  An evening strolls on narrow cobblestone streets to view one of the many inspiring soft-porn fountains or statues. It is a great place to be in love.

Enjoy the Climb!

a kiss at Passeggiata del Pincio