it’s great to be sharing with you today my 2 biggest passions- Rome and Shopping! Where to start….? I thought it would be a good idea to break it down into 2 sections. Although the city itself isn’t huge, there are, of course a few more shopping spots in Rome than those I’m about to mention, BUT the first time visitor has a lot of sightseeing to do, so I thought this would be a great way of fitting a spot of shopping into your sightseeing itinerary.
In my opinion, no trip to Rome is complete without a visit to the Spanish steps. Granted, they are quite literally just steps, with the very pretty church- Trinità dei Monti placed on top, made famous by the lovely Audrey Hepburn & Gregory Peck in ‘The Roman Holiday’, well worth grabbing some gelato, taking a seat, and absorbing the culture. The narrow side street looking down from the steps is via Condotti, a shopper’s paradise. Here you’ll find boutiques from Valentino, Trussardi, Yves St. Laurent, Bulgari, Celine, Jimmy Choo and Gucci to name a few (I could go on and on….) In the adjoining streets of Piazza di Spagna (where the Spanish steps lie), Piazza San Lorenzo, Via del Babuino and Via Borgognona you’ll find the rest of the designer delights such as Dolce & Gabbanna, Dior, Prada, Moschino and Hermes. The Versace Flagship store is not to be missed as it’s quite an alluring spectacle in itself, featuring intricate marble flooring, elaborate brass fittings and is the new home of Versace in Rome, a place to showcase everything from glamorous evening gowns to more casual jeans and knits. Whether you have the money to spend or not, this is such a lovely area to take in and even just browse. For more affordable fashion just a stone’s throw away you have Via del Corso, a long road running down from Piazza del Popolo which is jam packed full of great high street stores such as Zara, Benetton and Aldo shoes.
Campo de Fiori- a fruit and flower market by day and a bit of an entertainment hub by night. A square surrounded by outdoor seated restaurants and the ideal spot if you’re wanting to be entertained. It’s a lovely place to sit and unwind early evening after a hard day sightseeing. Very close by you have the Pantheon and Piazza Navona. The pretty cobbled streets surrounding all of these spots are lined with authentic Italian made leather boutiques and shoe stores. You’ll find wonderful bakeries selling everything from fresh bread to biscotti and upmarket deli’s offering olives, cheese and wine amongst other things, a great place to go if you’d like to take some culinary delights back home with you, and the perfect area to find gifts. If you head over the river from Campo de Fiori to Trastevere, which is only a 5 minute walk, you can browse handmade jewellery stalls along the way. In high summer the river is lined with temporary bars, restaurants and food stalls- well worth taking a look if mosquitos aren’t too much of problem for you!