Embraced by the eternal city

An exciting journey through the history of Rome. Every place, every street and every building has countless stories to tell

My journey through history starts just a short walk from home, Palazzo Velabro. I just have to decide where to go.

I am lured by the Mouth of Truth. But what was this big mask for? Nobody knows for sure.

Go ahead and discover the legends behind it.

Then I head towards the Tiber and then to the Tiber Island, the only urban island in the river. It becomes my second home every summer: L’Isola del Cinema film festival is a great event to go to for watching quality screenings and movies, while meeting directors and actors. Too bad it’s early, otherwise I would stop for lunch at the legendary Trattoria Sora Lella, a mainstay since the 1950s.

I still have some time to go to Jewish quarter, where you can find the Great Synagogue of Rome, one of the biggest in Europe. Inside, there is a rich Jewish Museum.

Now that I think about it, I feel like having some Jewish-style artichokes, a traditional dish in Rome. I know I’m the right place; there are many kosher restaurants in this secluded area of Rome. Today I’ll indulge in Nonna Betta’s specialties. Here, surrounded by an amazing atmosphere, I feel like I’m reliving the history of the ghetto.

After eating, I resume my tour. As I walk through Piazza Venezia, I stop for a minute to greet the cats that live in Largo di Torre Argentina, an ancient archaeological site. The lively, boisterous atmosphere of Campo de’ Fiori contrasts with the austere statue of Giordano Bruno, who died right here by fire.

Just a few more steps and I reach the Pantheon, which still looks almost the same as in Ancient Rome A stone’s throw from here is the splendid Church of San Luigi dei Francesi, where you can admire some masterpieces by Caravaggio.

I’ll take a little coffee break at Sant’Eustachio Il Caffè. Some consider it the best café in Rome. Want know their secret? They make coffee with water from an ancient aqueduct.

I walk the streets that follow this bend of the Tiber. In front of me, on the other side of the river, I can see Castel Sant’Angelo and the Vatican City. Just around the corner, I find myself in an antiques paradise. Lamps, tables and writing desks show off in the glittering shop windows of antique dealers on Via dei Coronari.

I decide to stop for a drink in a small, timeless square: Piazza San Lorenzo in Lucina.

It’s time to go back. I’m walking by the Trevi Fountain, the Scuderie del Quirinale, the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill. The final round of this magical day is a concert at Circus Maximus. As I look at the crowd, I imagine the chariot races that would place here, centuries ago.

I’ll keep visiting the city tomorrow. Wondering what my plans are? Rome’s Rose Garden and the Orange Garden – a secluded public square with fragrant orange trees, medieval walls and beautiful views of the city and the Tiber.

One of the most beautiful salons in the city.