aside Plans And Research For Gronda’s 2017 Trip To Rome


In 2017, I plan to be traveling to Rome with my 14 year old grandson. In the recent past when I was talking to him about my travels, I was impressed about how much he knew about Rome’s history. Over time he has indicated a strong interest in visiting this awesome city.

Because he is a student, we will go in June when Rome will be  more crowded with tourists and the weather will be hot  Also, my favorite location near the Piazza del Popolo may not suit a young man. So, I have given this some thought and I think that I have found the perfect solution.

APPIAN WAY 85bd13f784b416f532cadb49280d0912I booked a suite at the Appia Antica Resort.

Appia Antica Resort, Via Appia Pignatelli, 368 Appia Antica, 00178 Rome – Italy

Tel. +39 0(6) 45 44 80 35

Fax. +39 0(6) 45 44 82 92

The one bedroom suite with a sofa bed in a separate room allows for both of us to have some privacy. It is on the first floor with a view of the garden. The amenities include A/C, WIFI, a fridge, a microwave, an oven, toaster, a washing machine, a flat screen TV, a DVD player, a set of cutlery, hair dryer, etc.

The setting for this oasis is the Appian Way which is the closest you can get to Rome where you can truly immerse yourself in ancient times. Barely a mile south of central Rome, the nearby rural landscape has a backdrop which includes cobbled roads, catacombs and ruins. On either side of Rome’s oldest highway are fields where sheep graze. This is a perfect place for anyone to be able to have their own imaginative adventures. Yes, there is ample and frequent bus transportation (118 or 663) to take tourists like us to the center of Rome.

The following is how the Appia Antica Resort markets themselves:

“It is a Boutique Apartment Resort, located in close proximity to one of the best places in Rome, the Appia Antica Park .”

“The park is an oasis of green that lies around the archaeological and impressive ruins of Ancient Rome’s VIP’s villas. It is also very close to the center of Rome.”


“The apartment you have booked is Domus Ipazia, it is a 60 sqm (about 646 square feet) apartment with one bedroom and a comfortable living room. All rooms have large screen TVs with a DVD player and satellite channels, as well as A/C and many other amenities. We also offer free parking inside the property in case you have a car, or have rented one.”

“Nowadays even modern VIPs prefer to live around here! Just few hundred meters from us, you can find the villas of: Valentino (stylist), Gina Lollobrigida (actress), and Franco Zeffirelli (movie director).”

Appian Way Park
Appian Way Park

This luxury apartment hotel has concierge services which have already emailed us with ways to help us make our 7 day itinerary plans possible. I am strategizing to schedule activities that would interest my grandson like exploring for a day the Roman Forum complex, the ruins at the Palatine Hill, the Colosseum, and then another day for the Vatican and the Castle Sant Angelo. There should be one day set aside to stroll while taking in the atmospheric sights of the Spanish Steps, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon and the Piazza Navona. Another possible day’s tour could include the Villa Borghese gardens and the Capitoline Museums at the Piazza del Campidoglio, a piazza built in 1560 by Michelangelo.

Appia Antica Resort/
Appia Antica Resort/ Rated #1 Roman  hotel  by Trip Advisor/

On other days, I would like to take some time for my grandson to reconnoiter the Appian Way and the nearby catacombs. We’d also be interested in taking a train to Antica Ostia to check out the ruins of Rome’s original seaport and then it would be great to do a side trip to Tivoli to look over the fascinating archaeological site of Hadrian’s Villa and then, Villa D’Este. In addition, I’d like to find out if there are day time gladiator instructions in case my grandson would be interested. This should be enough to do.

Appian Way Villa
Appian Way Villa

The resort offered me some additional suggestions for activities:

“We recommend that you save a day to visit the gorgeous surroundings: Villa dei Quintili, Valle della Caffarella, Catacombe di San Callisto, Acquedotti Romani, Chiesa del Domine Quo Vadis, Via Appia Antica, Museum of the Roman Walls, etc: this is one of the most beautiful places in the world.”

“A half-day or a one-day guided tour on Via Appia Antica and its amazing surroundings. It includes: the Volcano and its lakes with the opposite gravity; the Tomb of Caecilia Metella, the Caffarella valley and the holy wood of the goddess Demetra, the Nympheus of Aegeria, the Catacumbs of St. Callisto, the church of Domine Quo Vadis, the Roman Acqueducts, the Museum of the Roman walls, etc, as well as a stop for lunch in a very typical Roman “ Trattoria” ( a family restaurant; this would be part of the one-day tour).”

Eataly, food extravaganza nearAntica Appian Resort
Eataly, food extravaganza nearAntica Appian Resort

Here are some other ideas shared by the hotel staff:

“A one-day guided tour to the Realm of Caserta ( set of Star Wars… ), with a lunch in a slow-food restaurant ( Mozzarella di Bufala ) and a little trip for the ladies to a famous designer outlet, La Reggia…”

“Around the neighborhoods of Appia Antica Resort, there are several historical attractions worth seeing, as you will also see in the description below ( “Some more interesting options” ), but we would also like to suggest some interesting  20th /  21st century spots:”

  • “EUR ( Universal Expo ’42) – The most beautiful area after the Baroque period in Rome. Was built for the Expo of 1942, which in the end was cancelled due to the war. It is a dream for the Rationalist architects, and it was built in the white “Travertino” style, according to the ancient Roman rules ( Cardus & Decumanus ). It was completed for the Olympic games of 1960, and it is an architectural example. Three interesting Museums over there: Museo della Civiltà Romana ; Museo dell’Alto Medioevo; Museo Peistorico e Etnografico ” Luigi Pigorini” : three small gems all within 200 meters of each other.”

  • Cinecittà Studios : “the Italian factory of dreams and movies that is open to the public. The magical place that has been the set for all the most important movies and the home of famous directors and actors from all over the world. Easily accessible from AAR.”
  • Eataly : “the excellence of Italian food. A shopping mall focused mainly on Italian food and delicacies. It has several restaurants inside, and here you will also be able to purchase some of the best Italian products to bring back home. Easily accessible from AAR.”
Tivoli's Villa D'Este Fontana del Nettuno and Fontana dell'Organo
Tivoli’s Villa D’Este Fontana del Nettuno and Fontana dell’Organo

We’ll manage to do our best to determine which gelateria and pizzeria serves the best tasty treats by doing a lot of taste tests around town

Note: This blog was updated on 7/16/16.

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