Excited and nervous. We slept around 2330 the day before. Our flight was 0710 and we woke up at around 0300. At 0345, we drove to the Gatwick Airparks before catching a shuttle bus to the Gatwick Airport. We paid around £30 for 5 days parking. The good thing is that customers only need to leave their cars at the reception and the Gatwick Airparks’ staffs will drive the cars into the huge car park spaces behind the reception. The shuttle bus leaves every 20 minutes. By the way, the road to the Gatwick Airparks was secluded and there were very few cars along the road, partly because it was still very early in the morning. Half way through, I was wondering if TomTom navigator was leading the wrong way.
Eventually, we arrived at the Gatwick Airport. The queue at EasyJet counter was very long. We waited patiently. We had already known that we had to pay £16 to check-in a piece of luggage but we never knew that we had to pay at another counter. Unfortunately, we waited for almost 30 minutes just to pay the £16 because the system was down.
At 1030, we arrived at the Fuimicino Airport. Weather was hot. From the Fuimicino Airport, we took the Leonardo Express, which is a non-stop train service to the Termini Station. We paid 11 euro per person. I would consider the Termini Station as the main station for traveling around Rome.
Navigating around Termini Station was easy and immediately, we bought a 7-day Metro ticket for 16 euro per person. Metro is the underground train service in Rome, Italy. It consists of Line A and Line B. The Termini Station is the only station that connects the two lines.
Our hotel was Hotel Santa Costanza, a 3-star hotel. It is located about 10 minutes away from Bologna station while Bologna station is three stations away from Termini. When we came out of the Bologna Station, we stopped at one of the Ice Cream shops around the area; 1.50 euro for two scoops. We stayed in room 215 and the first thing we looked at was the air-conditioning. Unfortunately, we were told that it is the law that air-conditioning can only be switched on after the 1st of June. We wonder if that is true.
The room was tiny but as described. Triple bed but it was two singles combined.
We took a short nap. We then went to the Termini Station again to check out the train services as we planned to go to Florence on the 12th May (Tuesday). We proceeded to search for the meeting point of the tour we had booked for 11th May (Monday). The tour was a combination of two half day tours; In the Heart of Rome and Ancient Rome and Colosseum with lunch included. We had no problem at all finding the meeting point.
On the way to the meeting point, we took some photos. There were a huge roundabout with Fountain of Naiadi and a church just opposite the fountain. After we confirmed the meeting point, we went to a nearby Metro station called Repubblica and we stopped at Spagna station which is near to the Spanish Steps (Piazza di Spagna). The area is not only known as a tourist destination but also well-known as a shopping heaven with big brand names like Prada, Gucci, Emporio Armani, Tiffany and Co. and many many more.
We did not take much photos here as we knew that our tour will cover the Spanish Steps. By the way, we were quite tired at that point of time. There is a Rome Bike service where one can buy a reload card in order to use the bicycles provided. Most of the famous tourist attractions will have a Rome Bike station.
Our journey that day covered places like:
- Fiumicino Airport (Leornado Express Train Service)
- Termini Station (Metro Train Service)
- Hotel Santa Costanza (Bologna Station)
- Tour Agency (Repubblica Station)
- Spanish Steps, Piazza di Spagna (Spagna Station)