How would you like to ride a Vespa and re-live some of the scenes of one of the most classic films of our times, “Roman Holiday”? Experience Princess Ann’s (Audrey Hepburn) emotions during her charming tour of the Eternal City?
Well, heads up and start the engine, Buzz4tours presents the “Roman Holiday Vespa Tour”!
Duration: 3/4 hours
- Piazza San Pietro
- Via dei Fori Imperiali
- Via Veneto and Piazza Barberini
- Piazza della Repubblica
- Foro Romano Arco di Settimio (The Arch of Septimus Severus)
- Via Margutta 51
- Fontana di Trevi (Trevi Fountain)
- Scalinata di Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps)
- Piazza del Pantheon
- Piazza Venezia
- Bocca della Verità (The Mouth of Truth)
- Ponte Sant’Angelo (St.Angel’s Bridge)
- Palazzo Colonna (Colonna Palace)
NB: The sites are not in any given order, start from wherever you wish.
Here’s what you’ll see
The film opens in St.Peter’s Square so where else could our tour begin? Bernini’s Piazza is certainly a great starting point. Excellent choice Ann!
The Princess continues her “escape” along the Imperial Forum and sees a military parade file by complete with the Bersaglieri Batallion who literally run everywhere they go. You ’ll think you are in some sort of time machine that takes you through two Eras. Rome in First century B.C. and that of the 50’s. Today you, unfortunately, cannot drive along the Fori Imperiali but, if you could, you would see The Arch of Septimius Severus. This is where journalist Joe Bradley (Gregory Peck) comes across Ann and mistakes her for a local drunk.
Piazza Barberini and Piazza della Repubblica come up next and represent the places where the Princess begins her escape from the Embassy where her family resides and whence the true Roman Holiday begins. Ann decides to free herself from the stuffy world of royal ceremonies and protocol and to lose herself in the vibrant and beautiful streets of Rome.
During her escape, she’s put up by Joe in his flat in Via Margutta 51. This is still a famous street in Rome, home to many local painters’ art galleries. Certainly, a good place to buy a painting of the views of the Eternal City.
Next comes the Trevi Fountain, set to another classic film shot in Rome, “La Dolce Vita” by Federico Fellini. This is where the Princess discovers everyday life. She buys shoes at a stall and has a haircut at the local barber (in Via della Stamperia 85 now a leather shop) to signify a clear-cut J separation from the past.
Ann and Joe casually meet at the Spanish Steps after a carefree night spent together. She enjoys an ice-cream sitting on the steps and he, after following her all morning, pretends meeting her by chance. Ann confesses her escape and Joe advises an extension of her holiday.
Now at the Pantheon, one of Rome’s most impressive Piazzas, Ann and Joe indulge in champagne and ice coffee at the Bar Rocca as Irving, a photographer friend of Joe’s, joins them and starts shooting a few photos of the Princess using a fake lighter.
Here comes the part with the most famous Vespa ride in film history, when the two stars embark on a tour going from the Colosseum to Piazza Venezia on their way to the Mouth of Truth, where Joe plays the legendary prank on Ann pretending the Mouth has eaten his hand.
Next up is St.Angel’s Castle and its bridge. Finally, we get to the first kiss between them, shivering cold after their swim in the Tiber to escape Ann’s bodyguards.
The closing scene. The Princess is at a press conference at Palazzo Colonna, located in Piazza Santi Apostoli. Ann leaves her throne to say goodbye to the journalists, Irving hands her the photos of her “Roman Holiday” as she gives Joe a last distraught smile.
The titles run…. the film is over. It’s not over for you, however! All you need to do now is to make all this a reality jumping on board one of our Vespas!