Did you know the average tourist spends two nights in Rome? It’s such a huge city with so many neighborhoods to discover, so when I first heard this stat, I thought, “how crazy!” But then I realized, my first visit to Rome was no more than 3 nights and with just the tourist sites being on my itinerary. But still, I hadn’t seen Rome. I’m still discovering Rome!
What if you’re looking for a different way to explore Rome? You still want to hit the tourist sites but maybe you’re looking for a more curated experience. That’s where the tour company Roma Experience comes in. Seeing the eternal city at dawn, Nero’s golden pleasure palace, a VR tour of the Colosseum are just a few of the special experiences this tour company offers. I had the pleasure of flashing back to my college days and fine art classes with a tour of Caravaggio and an exclusive visit to a first-class restoration lab, Merlini Storti where they restore paintings around the world from artists like Caravaggio, Raphael and Tintoretto.
If you’re an art nut listen up! Have you ever waited on line for ages to see at Caravaggio or a Titian at the MET or the Vatican, or National Museum? Did you know that in Rome, you have access to Caravaggios for free?! Caravaggio came into prominence during the Counter reformations where art and God were being brought closer to the people; paintings were being brought closer to commoners and commoners closer to the paintings. One could see both divinity and reality in art. When he arrived in Rome, it was the city of Christianity, the city of pilgrimage, the city of corruption and the city of prostitution. And that’s all reflected in his paintings — you just need to know how to look at them! And that’s what Roma Experience does. The guides implore you to open your eyes and they’ll take you through Caravaggio’s Rome.
The highlight of this experience was seeing restoration done at the Merlini-Storti Art Restoration in the heart of the city. All of those pieces painted centuries ago need a little TLC and this restoration lab is one of the best. This behind-the-scenes access until now was just that, something done behind closed doors. But Merlini-Storti recently focused on sharing their knowledge with public for people to be more sympathetic with the issue of conservation. Art through such an intimate experience. It’s a little bit of slow tourism, an off the beaten path experience in a city’s who streets you think you know everything about.
So the next time you’re in Italy, stay in Rome that extra night and have a truly unique experience with Roma Experience Tours. Check out a preview of my tour!