Rent a Vespa PROVAPeter Hall2024-02-03T21:37:05+01:00
Explore Rome on 2 wheels. Ride a Vespa!
Confident drivers only, please!*
Use your mobile to explore our pre-set routes to reach all the mustsees. Jump on board our latest Vespa and pass for a ‘local’ as you rev your way through the streets and alleyways of ancient and modern Rome.
The symbol of the perfect Roman Holiday, your Vespa can also take you out of town off the beaten track… beaches or countryside, for more fun and freedom. Come and see us, we’ll show you where!
*Please note that in the interest of our customers’ safety, we only rent to experienced drivers i.e. people who have recently driven a motorcycle/scooter/moped many times (at least 10x).
FYI Having used electric bicycles or kick scooters would not put you in the “experienced drivers category!” You’re on holiday…. don’t spoil it 🙂 May your common sense be with you … always!
Hadrian wanted it as a mausoleum for the imperial family and construction began in 135 AD. Marcus Aurelius, emperor from 161 to 180 AD, decided to turn it into a fortress of vital importance for the control of the whole city and so it remained.
At the end of the XIIIth century, St. Angel’s Castle became the escape route for Popes who would reach it by way of the famous “Passetto” (little step) which is a direct pathway you may still admire today that connects the Vatican to the Castle. If you drive towards the Vatican along Borgo Sant’Angelo, raise your head to the right about as high as a first floor and you’ll see the battlements of the “Passetto” right above you
It is the first church to be dedicated to Our Lady and it is one of the oldest in Rome. Its foundation is attributed to Pope Callistus I (217-22) over the spot where in 38 BC a miracle was purported to have happened when oil erupted and gushed all the way to the Tiber. This was later interpreted as the announcement of the birth of Jesus.
“Tiber Island” develops over an area of 270 x 70 meters and was apparently formed, so legend has it, as a result of hay stacks from Campo Marzio being thrown into the shallow waters. It was chosen as the site for the foreign cult of Aesculapius (the god of Medicine symbolised by a serpent) introduced to Rome from Greece following the pestilence of 292 BC. It was thus entirely consecrated to that god to the point of also being dubbed Aesculapius’ Island, because of this, it soon acquired a hospital function still true today with the presence of the Fatebenefratelli Hospital.
You are now standing in Piazza dei Cavalieri di Malta, Knights of Malta square.
The doorway is that of the Villa of The Prioriety of Malta and therefore aside from the rather magical perspective you will be treated to, you’ll experience standing on the grounds of one State while you look over another!
The Colosseum, also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre is the true symbol of Rome itself and according to the famous prophecy by the venerable Bede, of its “eternity”.
It was built by the Flavian Emperors; its original name is, in fact, the Flavian Amphitheatre whereas the name Colosseum originates in the XIth century inspired by its vicinity to the Colossus of Nero a 33 meter high bronze statue of Emperor Nero.
The original construction dates back to between 27 and 25 BC when Agrippa, son-in-law to Ottavian Augustus, had it built as an offering to the gods for his victory over the Persians; After burning down in 80 AD it was rebuilt by Emperor Adrian in 125 AD. The round temple topped by a dome very much represents ancient Rome’s answer to high tech. architecture. Superimposing a sphere over a cylindrical base with a structure entirely made of concrete was certainly no mean feat.
Piazza Navona is one of the most beautiful piazzas of Baroque Rome but its history dates back a great deal further. In fact, in Roman times, it used to be the ancient Domitian Stadium built in the first Century AD with a capacity for some 30,000 people lining its full length of 275 meters separated by the width of 106m. As you sit at one of the bars try to imagine athletics ‘track’ events going on around you because that’s what went on here in Roman times…Depending on how vivid is your imagination things could get a little dusty!!
Trevi Fountain is the epitome of the “Dolce Vita”, in other words the ever swinging, cinema driven, super film star frequented snazzy Rome of the 50’s and 60’s …here’s your chance to throw three coins in the fountain, not forgetting to make a wish to return to Rome, just as the song goes and as Audrey Hepburn did in that epic film with Gregory Peck “Roman Holidays”.
Piazza di Spagna is one of the most famous places on earth and certainly one of the more important in the city despite the many changes over the centuries. The area covers the ancient “Platea Trinitas” (Trinity’s open area), where both the French and Spanish Embassies once took residence. Perhaps contributing to the name of the Piazza, such illustrious ‘tenants’ influenced the area’s re-styling which gave place to the construction of a number of today’s ”attractions” majestically carried out by some of the greatest artists of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries.
The best place to admire the beautiful Piazza del Popolo is to stand with your back to the main gate you can see at the north end, with the obelisk and the two churches in front of you. Should you not fancy actually going to the spot I’ve just described then … just imagine you’re standing there …. If you don’t fancy that either …..then go and sit at either of the two bars at the church’s end of the square for a soothing albeit expensive refreshment and just soak the square in while you continue reading !
You have the chance of visiting the most important church in the world of the whole of Christianity.
It all started at the beginning of the 15th century when Julius II decides to knock down the ancient Basilica dating back to the Constantine Era. It was completed a mere 100 years later, give or take a decade, to include the magnificent dome by Michelangelo and the baroque facade by Carlo Moderno.
It was finally consecrated in 1626 and although the Basilica appeared imposing enough, none other than Gian Lorenzo Bernini was called upon to add to perfection. He must have enjoyed the Vatican’s cuisine a great deal because his work lasted for a brisk thirty years’! True, he did take his time over detail, but after all, the end result was that he managed to capture the exceptional symbolic importance the icon of the Catholic Church simply had to convey, turning it into the formidable spectacle it is today.
Some Doos & Don’ts!
So… You’re about to rent a Vespa in Rome from us … Here are some pointers to pass for a real Roman on 2 wheels:
Bob ‘n weave between cars changing lanes as often as you can
Sound your horn incessantly if you’re stuck behind a slow motorist
Guys: whistle at a pretty girl – Girls: shout “ Ah bellooo” (hey good looking) if you like a guy… NB this may only be done in absence of respective partners… yours and theirs
Set your elbows at near right angles and let the point of your shoes dangle from the front of the foot rests – chew gum with your mouth strictly open
Rock your chest forward as you come off the lights and whistle… regardless of good lookers…
Let anybody through
Thank anybody for letting you through
Queue in traffic (seriously)
ON A MORE SERIOUS NOTE: BEWARE OF BUS LANES.
Rome is a beautiful City but it isn’t famous for the visibility of its road signs.
You are not allowed to drive in Bus lanes so if you are following a bus or a taxi, there is a very good chance you are in the wrong lane.
Bus lanes are characterised by a continuous yellow line delimiting the lane, sometimes you may see “plastic pizzas” stuck to the line and usually, unless it has been hung facing the nearest wall, you should also see a sign at the beginning of the lane.
The trouble is, you may be coming from a side street, heading for an intersection where no warning signs of an incumbent bus lane may have been placed.
In short, whenever you are turning into another road, glance at the tarmac and check it for thick yellow lines…