Thursday, December 20, 2007

Where to Cool Off on a Hot Day in Rome

Let's face it-the heat in Rome can be unbearable at the height of summer. The sun is blinding, the streets are crowded, and your shoes were not made for cobblestones. You are dying for a quiet hour next to the pool. Unfortunately, swimming pools are hard to come by. It's pretty much impossible to find a hotel with a pool in the historic center of Rome. The Cavalieri Hilton hotel has a pool and lovely wooded acres, but it's 3 miles from the center of town-not exactly convenient if you want to stay in the Centro Storico. There is good news, however! For 25 Euros (not cheap-but desperate times call for desperate measures) you can buy your way into a pool in the city for the whole day. The Grand Hotel del Gianicolo, located atop the Gianicolo hill at Viale delle Mura Gianicolense #107, has a lovely pool that is within a short walk from Trastevere. After your swim, have a coffee at one of the nearby cafes, take a stroll past the American Academy, the Aqua Paola and on to Garibaldi Park for a top-notch view of the city! Don't forget your bathing cap-a requirement at Italian pools (and available at the hotel for 5 Euros).

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