So I’m off to Rome in February and I have been pondering what to pack, I want to feel good and if I’m honest a little bit sexy as I’m going with the hubby, it’s the first time abroad without our son for a long while…
I do of course have that option of just taking hand luggage which will save us time – however I am typically not that type of girl who can get away with hand luggage for a 4 day break! How is that even possible?
I have kept in mind that when in Rome the locals (European Women) tend to be a little smarter than us Brits. So here are a few of my ideas to keep me looking the part during my travels, and hopefully it gives you some tips too.
In general Slim or Skinny jeans are the best and most chic option, if you don’t own a pair or they don’t suit your bodyshape then just opt for a more tailored pair, but look at areas like the hem – you want them straight and certainly not with an excess of material gathered round your ankles.
Even in February the weather will typically be hotter than Britain, if you are going later then prepare for scorching sunshine. This might mean all style goes out the window so minimise that chance by choosing practical yet breathable fabrics like linen, rayon and cotton.
Visiting religious sites like the Vatican means you might need to cover up a little more, so take a wrap, light cardigan or scarf with you, maybe opt for a summer dress that goes down to the knee and has some movement so it can keep you cool. A denim jacket is a great option too, especially for those romantic evening strolls.
Forget those fabulous strappy shoes or heels for the daytime, all those cobbles round Rome make fancy footwear a no go! Instead go for pumps or a classic white trainer with some detail or embellishment on them. Save those killer heels for a taxi ride or a romantic dinner in the hotel.
Dresses are a girls best friend in Rome, there feminine so you feel dressed up and girly. You don’t have to worry about mix and matching items there an all in one outfit ready to go. Taking a mix of long and shorter dresses in lightweight fabrics will keep you cool in the heat.
A great alternative to dresses is wearing a romper suit or jumpsuit, they are good option if your not that girly or you have a bigger bust and need to wear a bra. They give you the convenience of wearing shorts but have the added wow factor if you add some fab accessories. Look for structured fabrics when choosing a romper or jumpsuit as cheap fabrics are a no go for this item of clothing. No one wants see through or wobbly bits on display. Opt for a black or navy outfit that will look comfortable and dressy at the same time. Add a great bag or hat for added chic!
Simple tops and shirts look effortlessly cool when sightseeing in Rome, make sure they are plain in colour and design as they will match with more of your other items. Take a couple of longer sleeved tops for the evening, and a few more lightweight breathable tops for day.
Shorts – If you do wear short shorts, you should make sure you have something on your that you can use as a coverup just encase you are turned away from a church or another religious establishment. In the summer, wear light colors and clothes which are made out of linen or cotton. In the evening trousers are preferred because they are more elegant.
I would say that Italy is the capital of the world regarding sunglasses! All the big fashion names make them and it doesn’t matter if it’s summer, winter, sunny or raining. Italians will have them on. Some women put them in their hair purely as an accessory. I would highly recommend buying them in Rome!
Hair & Make up – So my straighteners will definatley be joining me, otherwise I will look like an untamed Lions mane, particularly in the heat. I might embrace the curls in the daytime for ease, but I will pack some serum and antihumidity spray by GHD to keep that smooth look. Make up for the day will be kept to a minimum but I will always be wearing my black Stila mascara, and a good tinted foundation & lipcolour as it protects from the sun too.
Top Travel Tips
Classical Rome Sightseeing Tour
When in Rome, you must of course see Rome’s famous landmarks, the Colosseum, Vatican City, Imperial Forum, fancy shopping streets, beautiful churches and fountains and more! A bike tour is a fun way of seeing the amazing buildings and monuments of Rome. Or for something different, travel in style around ancient Rome at twilight aboard a Segway – the coolest ride of the 21st century!
Wine & Cheese Tasting in Rome
An excellent pre-dinner treat, sample some fine wines typical of the Lazio region and an inviting selection of regional cheeses, premium salami and succulent hams in a traditional wine bar in the heart of Rome. Enjoy the Italian way of life in the heart of Rome by stopping off at the 18th-century Palazzetto Giangiacomo and visit a traditional Italian wine bar to taste a selection of different wines and cheeses.
Trastevere: Trends and Tradition
Discover Trastevere, one of Rome’s most atmospheric suburbs, famous for its labyrinthine streets and fantastic stores. This neighbourhood offers artisan shops, art galleries, stunning basilicas and mosaic adorned squares. Get lost in the beauty of this old-meets-new area, home to ancient art, renowned bakeries and worship-worthy sorbet.
A spectacular view is never far away in Italy.
For something unique visit the ‘keyhole’ situated in an historic gate on Aventino Hill, Rome, which offers views of St Peter’s Basilica. In the Piazza of the Knights of Malta (Piazza dei Cavalieri di Malta) designed in 1765 by the Italian architect Giovanni Battista Piranesi, press your camera against the hole in the big green door, some of its paint worn off by tourists trying to get a picture of the dome of St. Peters through the shrubbery tunnel. The Aventino isn’t far from the Trestevere railway station, found just across the Tiber.
My final tips for Rome is that eating and drinking doesn’t have to be as expensive as it’s feared. Obviously bars and restaurants next to the main sites are, but just walk one street back. For lunch go to the ‘snack bars’ they are thin little shops which sell sandwiches, focaccia and coffee. Two huge filled breads and a hot drink will cost around 10Euro and then just sit on the nearest fountain and watch the world go by. Why waste half the day in a restaurant, save this for the evening.
When visiting the Coliseum, go in via The Roman Forum, it’s just up the road and you can buy a ticket for both. There can be huge queues for the Coliseum where as there is less at the Forum and you get great views of the former as you walk through.
My trip has been organised by Angela Marshall @ Travel Counsellors, she also provided me with a selection of places to see and things to do when in Rome! (detailed above)