See how history inspiring fashion
Ciao! my friends,
I wish you all enjoyed the Rome Day 1 sharing so far! yeah, it’s 6 attractions in the first day, pretty compacted, but definitely doable and all very convenient in walking distance, that’s the beauty of Rome, strolling the whole city by foot is super pleasant! Also I would like to use this opportunity to share a short movie made by my love, who catch our first day mostly and the Piazza di Spagna in this best travel movie- Camminare a roma (Walking in Rome), please see this, it’s really beautiful!
So here we are, the second day in Rome!
We put Piazza di Spagna as the first attraction since it’s really close to our hotel, about 6 mins walk, and we have a tour scheduled at 11am for Colosseum and Palatine Hill. well, it’s quite a full schedule even though on the list it only shows four places, but it actually is a main giant historical set of ruins of Rome. I highly suggest that you do not do anything else in the same day if you are plan to see Colosseum, otherwise it will exhaust you very soon.
However, I have to make a confession here… I was wrong about Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps) there are so many people mentioned on the internet talking about it is one of the biggest disappointing places to see in Rome, and I believed it because from those pics on Google, it looks overwhelmingly PACKED!
But, Boy I was so wrong, the morning walk around Spanish Steps was quite nice, we grabbed a coffee and some cookies at a local’s favorite coffee shop, greeted friendly people, everything was so fresh and lovely, and also people-watching all the way we got to see how modern Romans start their morning.
Let’s get the background story of Piazza di Spagna first:
It is actually constructed by the French in the 1720s as a gift to Rome, the staircase links the Piazza di Spagna, named for the presence of the Spanish Embassy, and the Trinità dei Monti church, which dominates at the top of the steps. The fountain in front of the steps is called: Fontana della Barcaccia (Fountain of the longboat) and it was built in 17th century by Pietro Bernini, who is the father of Gian Lorenzo Bernini.
There is a historic home and museum is dedicated to the English Romantic poets in the early 19th century John Keats, located at the bottom right of the Spanish Steps. unfortunately we couldn’t see it as we had a fully packed schedule, but I hope to see it next time then share with you.
Also a lot of movies were shot here, one of my teen period likelihood romantic comedies Roman Holiday (1953), Audrey Hepburn eating gelato on the step, this scene made the Spanish Steps famous to American audience. In recent years Woody Allen’s To Rome with Love, Hayley and Michelangelo Santoli met on the Spanish Steps at the beginning scene. From time to time, fashion shows are also held here, you can continually to see how designers are inspired by Rome’s history. we arrived about 8:30, you can start feeling the crowd is coming, but still good enough to get some good shots there. Not going to hide, I did feel the fashion mode was on while shooting on the steps, hehe 😛
Nowadays Piazza di Spagna is the most luxurious place to go, all of the famous high-end designer brands open shops in this neighborhood: Valentino, Gucci, Prada, Ermenegildo Zegna…etc, everything you want. Although, I was not in the mood for shopping, a nice breakfast fueled us up with energy for the coming up adventures. we walk around into the small alley (even in the alley you can see lots of beautiful boutiques) and we end up in a very nice coffee shop- La Buvette, which provides really authentic local foods (I wrote a whole post about recommended restaurants in Rome later), we seated at an outdoor table, got a truly outdoor fashion show of people watching, it is said they are elites lives in this neighborhood, we totally believe it, every woman even just walk a dog or buying grocery, was dressed up like out of a fashion magazine!
After the breakfast + street fashion show, on the way to get a taxi, we pass by one of the five ugliest fountains of Rome- Babuino (The Baboon), the talking fountain. hence, the street also name after this fountain-Via del Babuino.
Talking fountains, in old times people posted or wrote some political comments, criticism on the wall behinds the fountain.
Although now this tradition is no longer be seen, graffiti are all removed, we still feel pretty entertained to see this moldy, greeny, very different fountain of Rome!
We couldn’t be happier to get ready for Colosseum, after the beautiful Spanish steps, and the funny Babuino fountain, Rome had in store another day full of stories! walk with us friends!
Tips for visiting Piazza di Spagna
- Timing! please come as early as you can. I will say before 8:30 am is still good for shooting, but since we come here in March which is considered as the end of low season, I can’t guarantee you in the other months.
- it’s allow to sit on the steps, but not allow eating on the steps anymore.
- it’s not allowed to sit on the rails, there are cops there protecting the steps, will whistle to you.
- Prepare more money if you are intend to shopping! 🙂
Have you ever seen Spanish steps or shopping at there? what was the experience like? also have you ever seen ugliest fountain of Rome? let me know please!
This post is one of the attractions from our Ultimate Rome 6 day trip itinerary Day 2, you can click each of the names to see the full post.