Friday, March 30, 2007

Travel blogs about Rome

I was searching the internet for sites about Rome and Italy and came across this rather interesting site Here you'll find a variety of links to blogs written by people living in or travelling through Italy. This is a nice idea and worth checking out if you're interested to know what others are doing whilst in Italy. It may give you some ideas for your own trip!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Review of Italian for Tourists

Ron Berry is a fellow writer and member of a writers group I belong to and he kindly reviewed my book 'Italian for Tourists', this is what he wrote:

Italian for Tourists
A review

I don't speak Italian. I have enough trouble with English (or is itAmerican). Jo Linsdell has written the definitive guidebook. I know if I ever make it to Italy, this is the book I want. Why? Becauseit's layout is simple, easy to use and covers everything. Ms Linsdell has put in a guide to how to pronounce the letters and put in themost common of phrases. There is not a lot of excess wording so finding what phrase or word you need in a hurry is very simple. Thisbook is a must for anyone traveling to Italy. The only negative is that it doesn't go into all the bad language that Italian drivers throw at each other. Wait, that's a good thing.

The first thing you notice is how the book is divided. Then you getthe guide to how to pronounce each letter and in Italian, you do just that. After that, all you have to do is look for the section youneed, airport, train station, hotel, etc, and all the common phrases are there. Anyone who travels can use this book. There are many Italian to English books or other combinations, but none are as easyto use as Italian for Tourists. I highly recommend this to anyone traveling to Italy.

Ron Berry

Order your copy of Italian for Tourists today from

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

AMA Roma

AMA Spa, Azienda Municipale Ambiente (Municipal Environment Agency)- funded in 1985 - is the Italian leading company in the field of environmental services and Urban Solid Waste managing. AMA provides urban hygiene services across the area of the Municipality of Rome - the largest in Italy - by ensuring the daily collection, haulage and disposal of about 4,000 tons of wastes, the cleaning of streets and pavements covering a total area of 25 millions square meters and the cleaning of 250 local markets, 5 big city markets an weekly markets.

Moreover, AMA provides for the separate collection of glass, plastic aluminium and metal, the recovery of hazardous urban waste, such as batteries and pharmaceutical products, vehicle batteries and abandoned syringes and - upon request - the cleaning of cesspools.

AMA also manages the Funeral and Cemetery Services and through "All Clean Roma" and "Sanama", two companies in which it has a stake, sees to the protection of the outer surfaces of monuments and buildings and to rat extermination, disinfection and disinfestations.

Apart from the green containers for urban waste, AMA provides the following to Romans:
White containers for paper objects, such as books, magazines, newspapers, exercise books and cardboards.
Blue containers for glass, metal and plastic objects, such as bottles, cans, jars, containers.
AMA also recovers about 100 tons per annum on average of lead batteries that contain highly pollutant substances. To this end AMA has installed grey containers in 32 business centers for car and motorcycle batteries.
Small batteries can be disposed in the yellow containers available to citizens in every primary and secondary schools and on all business premises.
Special white containers for the collection of expired pharmaceutical products may be found in all Pharmacies and business premises.

Old furniture, such as sofas, chairs and tables, or household appliances, such as washing machines or vacuum cleaners, must not be dumped in containers nor left on the streets, as this seriously damages the image of the city and pollutes the environment. The solution - free of charge - is to bring those bulky wastes either to the AMA collection centers (open Tuesdays to Saturdays - excluding holidays - from 3:00 to 6:00 pm) or to the "Isole ecologiche"(open 7:00 to 11:00 am and 2:30 to 7:00 pm Mondays to Saturdays and 7:00 to 11:00 am on Sundays)

Alternatively, costumers can use the home collection service of bulky wastes which AMA provides upon requests. Different prices will be applied depending on the quantity of wastes and on the kind of recollection (ground floor or upper floors)

In order to book the service you can call 060606 (English-speaking operators available Monday to Saturday 4pm to 7pm) to agree on the price, date and time of collection. Payment will be made on recollection.

Rome is a beautiful city, let's keep it that way. For more information about AMA Roma visit their website or call their toll free number 800-867035

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

short story contest reminder

I'm looking for short stories connected to Italy in some way. You're story could be based in Italy or have Italian people in it. Use you're imagination. As long as it has a connection with Italy it's valid.
The categories are fiction (any type), non-fcition and poetry. The genre is up to you but please keep it clean. No swearing, explicit violence etc...
Stories should be between 500 and 1500 words in length and may be used in a future anthology. Original content preferred.
Share your love of Italy and have the chance to have you're story published!
Deadline for submissions is 30th April 2007. Please send your submission to with 'short story contest' in the subject line.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Italy-England under 21's

The Italy vs England under 21's football match marked the first game at the new wembley stadium in England. The final result was 3-3 and the Italian Pazzini (who plays for Florentina) won 'man of the match', scored goals and was clapped by the whole stadium on leaving the pitch. A great game to watch and a great show of sportsmanship by both teams and supporters.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Trash People

Piazza Del Popolo, Rome
21st- 29th March 2007

Trash People is an exhibition, by Ha Schult, of life-size figures made from compressed industrial waste and urban consumer refuse. Every single object or piece of rubbish that makes up each figure is a direct reference to our daily lives. The artists message, intentionally powerful, is a warning for us to consider which way we should turn to seek our quality of life.

The installation, made up of 1000 elements, multiples the impact that one sculpture makes by sheer numbers. The gravity and importance of the message is all the more obvious due to the vast dimensions of the installation.
The artist, Ha Schult, was born in 1939 and grew up among the ruins of Berlin. Having studied at the Art Accademy in Dusseldorf, Schult has created many pieces over the years. His actions focus on the social environments within cities around the world. His artistic work is expressed by images that make a forceful impact.

This thought provoking piece of artwork is well worth a visit. Visit for more information about this artist and the Trash People World Tour.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

cin, cin, cinema

For all you film lovers out there, between 5th March and 5th April, Cin, Cin, Cinema is offering cinema tickets at reduced prices.
Valid Monday to Thursday for an afternoon showing pay only €3,00 and for the evening just €5,00 for a ticket. Better still if you go to the cinema 4 times you get 2 tickets free! (you will need to show the tickets for all the showings so keep them safe).

For more information visit or call +39-06-4470-2282

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Villa Borghese card

If you like parks, museums, art galleries and attending special events the Villa Borghese card might be the thing for you.

This annual card offers 1 free entrance, discounts at museums and the zoo as well as saving you money on events and other services offered in the Park. All this for just €10,00!

It might be valid all year but you'll get your money worth in just a few days.

For more information visit or call +39-06-8205-9127

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Short story contest

I'm launching a new contest and you're all invited to enter!

I'm looking for short stories connected to Italy in some way. You're story could be based in Italy or have Italian people in it. Use you're imagination. As long as it has a connection with Italy it's valid. The genre is up to you but please keep it clean. No swearing, explicit violence etc...

Stories should be between 500 and 1500 words in length and may be used in a future anthology.

Share your love of Italy and have the chance to have you're story published!

Deadline for submissions is 30th April 2007. Please send your submission to with 'short story contest' in the subject line.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Castel Sant'Angelo

Castel Sant'Angelo is a great place to visit. The views from the terrace at the top are amazing and it's full of interesting rooms and tunnels that are well worth exploring. A ticket normally costs €5,00 however this is increased to €7,00 when the Castel hosts exhibitions or special events.

Audio guides can be purchased from the bookshop inside for €4,00 single or €6,00 double and are available in the following languages; English, Italian, French, German and Spanish.

For more information you can contact the Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant'Angelo at +39-06-3996-7600

Friday, March 16, 2007

Rome marathon

The Rome marathon takes place on Sunday 18th March this year. An estimated 15,187 marathoners from over 72 nations will participate in the event, putting Rome 5th in the World and 3rd in Europe.

There is also a Marathon Village (Palazzo dei Congressi) which is open from 15th March until 17th March, 10am until 8pm everyday. Runners can pick up their bib numbers and race packet for the Marathon and the 5k Stracittadina Fun Run. They can also visit stands, attend concerts and shows, utilise sports facilities and take part in the entertainment festivities. The estimated number of visitors to the village is about 87,ooo.

Full information about the marathon can be found at

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Answers to Quiz

Let's see how you did...

1) In the Vatican Museums which are part of the state called 'Città del Vaticano'

2) Although the actual number of hills in Rome is about 20, the famous 7 are; Palatine, Celian, Capitoline, Aventine, Quirinal, Esquiline and Viminal.

3) Romulus and Remus.

4) Michelangelo

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


Here's a little quiz to test your knowledge of Rome and Italy. Answers will be posted tomorrow.

1) I'm in Rome, but not in Italy. Where am I?

2) Name the 7 hills of Rome

3) Name the two legendary founders of Rome

4) The statue of Moses housed in the small church San Pietro in Vincoli was the work of which famous artist?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Roma Pass

The ROMA PASS is the capital's first cultural tourist card offering discounts and services to encourage visits to the city museums and "allow tourists and other visitors to enjoy the sights of Rome". Launched by the Municipal Authorities of Rome and the Ministry of Cultural Heritage in conjunction with ATAC, the pass costs €20,00 and entitles the holder to; free admission to the first two museums and/or archaelogical sites visited, full access to the public transport system, reduced tickets and discounts for a variety of other museums and sites visited as well as exhibitions, music events, theatrical and dance performances and all other tourist services.

ROMA PASS is valid for 3 days from it's validation date and comes with a kit that includes; Roma pass transport ticket, Roma Map, Roma Pass guide and Roma News.

For more infomration about ROMA PASS visit or contact

Monday, March 12, 2007

Dining out- Royal Art Café

Located in Piazza del Colosseo with front row seats from which to view the world famous Colosseum, the Royal Art Café is a popular choice for both tourists and locals. Opened in 2000, the restaurant offers seating for around 200 people with a choice of roadside, indoors or terrace.

The menu contains traditional Italian meals based on meat dishes, plus a variety of salads and pasta. There is also a wide range of deserts.

The restaurant is open all day (8am-2am) with live music in the evenings. Due to its terrace over-looking the Colosseum, the Royal Art Café is also a popular venue for weddings, birthdays and other celebrations.

Royal Art Café
Piazza del Colosseo 1
00184 Roma

tel: +39-06-7759-0270


Thursday, March 8, 2007

Festa delle Donne!


International womens day is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Italy. The mimosa (shown above) is the symbol of the festa delle donne in many cultures as is given as a gift to women on 8th March. The mimosa has been the symbol of 8th march since it was used in 1946 by the UDI (Unione Donne Italiane) when preparing for the first festa delle donne after the war.

The origins of this much celebrated day are some what unclear. Some say it was started in Copenhagen in 1910, others in St. Petersburg in 1917. Whichever the reason we celebrate, the festa delle donne is a day to give thanks for all that women do in the world and a day to reflect on discriminations and violent against them.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Language- Romanesco

A romance dialect spoken in Rome, Romanesco is one of the Central Italian dialects, and therefore very close to Italian and Tuscan. Romanesco is used informally by most natives of Rome and contains many expressions and sayings.

Nowadays classical Romanesco is disappearing and being replaced by the more vulgar Romananccio.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Rome- The facts

The above image is the Seal for Rome. SPQR means Senatus Populus Que Romanus. Rome has many nicknames including among others; the Eternal City, Caput mundi (Capital of the World) and the city of teh seven hills.

Rome is the Capital of Italy and found in the region of Lazio. The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian peninsula, where the Aniene river joins the Tiber river. Rome is one of the largest cities in the European Union.

The Historic Centre of Rome is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Monday, March 5, 2007

San Pietro in vincoli

San Pietro in Vincoli or Saint Peter in Chains is a small church located close to the Colosseum in Rome. This ancient basilica is dedicated to Saint Peter the Apostle. It was built in 442 over the ruins of an Imperial villa, to house the chains that had bound St. Peter in Jerusalem. The church has been restored, rebuilt and renovated several times over the years and since 1970 has been property of the Italian state.
Although this small church contains numerous paintings and frescoes, the most famous piece of art is Michelangelo's Moses from 1545 found to the right of the altar.

The chains of St. Peter are displayed in the confessio before the altar. The feast of the chains of St. Peter is celebrated on 1st August. The feast of St. Peter and St. Paul is on 29th June.

Address: 4a Piazza San Pietro in Vincoli, 00184 Roma

Normally open daily 7:00-12:30 and 15:30-18:00

Friday, March 2, 2007

Easter words

L'agnello — lamb
Buona Pasqua — Happy Easter
Il coniglietto — bunny rabbit
La crocifissione — Crucifixion
Pace — peace
Pasquetta — Easter Monday
Primavera — spring
La resurrezione — Resurrection
La Settimana Santa — Holy Week
L'Ultima Cena — Last Supper
Le uova — eggs
Venerdì Santo — Holy Friday

Thursday, March 1, 2007

The Pantheon

The Pantheon is the best preserved building of ancient Rome. Dedicated to the planetary Gods, the original temple was built by Marcus Agrippa in 27 BC. The temple was rebuilt by Emperor Hadrian around 120 AD however Agrippa's name remained inscribed over the entrance.

After being abandoned under the first Christain emperors, the temple was given to the Church by the Eastern emperor Phocus in 608 AD.

Both the height and the diameter of the interior of the building measure 43.3m. It's dome is considered one of the most important achievements of ancient Roman architecture.

Italian kings, Vittorio Emanuelle II and Umberto I along with the artist Raphael are buried here.


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