Trans Travel: Invisible in Rome – Daily Beast

trans travel

I usually get butterflies in my stomach before a big adventure, and my 2016 study abroad trip to Rome is no exception. Most of it is the usual mix of nerves and excitement—I wouldn’t travel if I didn’t love it—but there’s another element as well.

This would be the first time I am outside the country as a transgender person.

When you do a quick Google search of “trans travel,” you tend to end up with a list of things that could go wrong: getting held up at the airport, harassed by strangers, more airport horror stories, getting killed. And these are things I know I should be aware of, but none of this is new information. What I’m worried about is the unknown. What is Rome’s queer community like? Are transgender people on their radar? Should I tone down my femininity? Google doesn’t say.

The flight goes about as well as it can—thankfully no horror stories here—and before I know it I find myself in my university’s Rome Center, filling out my Declaration of Presence. Nome? Noah. Sesso? Female.

From there I make my way down the narrow cobbled streets to find my apartment, the wheels on my suitcase getting trapped between the stones (sanpietrini) when they aren’t clattering embarrassingly loudly in the quiet residential area. By the time I reach my vine-covered apartment I’ve worked up a good sweat in the humid June heat of the city. I’ve also realized that it’s going to be impossible to wear my chest binder here. I’m not supposed to wear it more than eight hours, certainly not while exerting myself in the heat, and I already know I will probably walk more than I have in my life.

By Noah Deans-Gravlee – Full Story at The Daily Beast

Rome Gay Travel Resources


The Roman Forum and Palatine Hill – Keep Calm and Wander

Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Here are photos of my leisurely walk at the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. For most tourists, they directly go to the hill where they see the bird’s eye view of the ancient ruins of the city that brought us the legend of Remus and Romulus. Some tour companies won’t include this attraction because it’s vast – and it would take time to go around.

At first, I wasn’t really impressed of the ruins I saw – until I sat down and googled its history. After 20 minutes of reading online, I walked around the lower ground and appreciated its significance to the city’s history. I see those relics with a new eye.

This archaeological site was once the residence of aristocrats and emperors. By the look of it, you’ll see that this was the centre of political and social movements at its heydays. Legend has it that Remus and Romulus were found in a cave here by the she-wolf. Romulus is believed to be the founder of the city of Rome (now you know where the city’s name come from). Caligula, that lunatic of an emperor, was killed here on a tunnel under the palaces.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Rome Gay Travel Resources

No Romance at the Spanish Steps – Keep Calm and Wander

Spanish Steps - Keep Calm and Wander

First of all, I didn’t find romance at the Spanish Steps in Rome. Not even a wisp breath of ardour. And that’s because the place is infested with tourists, like me.

I can only imagine at night when lovers would smooch on the stairs and whisper promises only to be broken later. But surely, you’ve seen this place from the movie, “Roman Holiday” or that TV show, “Everybody Loves Raymond.” And oh, if you’re a Bob Dylan fan, you might have heard this place in his song, “When I Paint My Masterpiece.”

Why it’s called Spanish Steps? There used to be a Spanish Embassy in the area and at the bottom of the steps, you’ll find Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Plaza). Naturally its name is extended into the steps – thus, it became Spanish Steps.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Rome Gay Travel Resources

Rome Skyline From the Vatican – Keep Calm and Wander

Rome Skyline - Keep Calm and Wander

If you’re like me who like to see city skylines, then we could travel together. The view of the Vatican from the top of St Peter Basilica is surreal. You won’t just be able to see the city-state itself but it goes farther beyond Rome. You won’t be able to see skyscrapers like the ones in Dubai, Chicago or New York. But you’ll see a city that’s a work of many great artists who combined their creative forces to build a beautiful place that’s classic and timeless.

From the Top. You’ll be able to see the building where the Pope lives. The gardens of the Vatican, the building where the Sistine Chapel is, bridges and other magnificent architectural work. You’ll also be in close encounter with the Michelangelo’s Dome that towers all over Rome. The statues of Christ and his disciples on the facade roof are within your reach, too. And oh, I’ve never seen a city with so many domes but Rome.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Sixtythree B&B – Rome Gay Friendly Guesthouse

Sixtythree B&B - Rome Gay Friendly Guesthouse

Sixtythree guesthouse offers its guests comfortable, clean and centrally located rooms at extremely convenient price since 2005. We are located in the lively and multicucltural district of Esquilino Hill, just 150 meters away from the main entrance of Termini station and within walking distance from the most part of Roman museums and monuments.

Are you willing to skip the public transport and enjoy the best of Rome walking the whole day through history? Or maybe you prefer to book a place in the best connected district of Rome to take advantage of the public transport at best?

In both cases Sixtythree guesthouse is the right place for you. Book on our website the best available rates or contact us to get more information: we hope to make our place your home during your Roman days!

About the rooms: private bathroom, daily cleaning, free wifi (ultra broad band), airconditioning, sat tv.

An Italian breakfast is included in the rate.

See the Sixtythree B&B Expanded Listing on Purple Roofs Here

Rome Gay Friendly Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels, and Vacation Rentals

Another Day in Rome – Dolly Travels

Rome - Dolly Travels

Buongiorno, tutti,

I have really enjoyed being in Rome again, as now we are not feeling pressured to see as much as we can cram into a few days. We can proceed at a more relaxed pace. I have already told you about our Sunday: from Piazza Navona to the Pantheon to Trevi Fountain, then to Bar Brasile, to watch Roman chaos. We had been there on Friday, after visiting the Borghese Galleria.

Rome - Dolly TravelsThe waiter, Mario, was so happy when he saw us, he grabbed Frank in a big bear hug and kissed him on the cheek. Mario then found us a spot where we could watch the activity of Piazza Venezia.

Monday was another story. We had reservations for the Vatican Museum. We took the Metro out to a stop about a 10 minute walk from the Museum. The place was packed, with many tour groups. As we had reservations, we got right in, but after that we had to follow groups, on after another, to get to see anything. We stopped at a cafeteria for a cappuccino, then went with the crowds to see our favorite sculptures.

Every place was so crowded, with people pushing and shoving, I was afraid that we might get hurt. After an hour of that, we turned around, gradually getting back to the entrance and we left. By then, it was lunch time, so we found a restaurant that we had gone to before on our trips, and had lunch. We just went back to the apartment after that, and relaxed for awhile before attempting any other excursions.

That was stressful. A lady we met yesterday, who had also been at the Vatican Museum that day, told us that her tour guide said that Monday was the busiest she had ever seen the museum, and it is usually busy.

I went online and I read estimates that anywhere from 17, 000 to 25, 000 people visit the Vatican Museum every day that it is open. On that day, I am sure that there were 25,002 visitors. The Economist estimates that over 80 billion dollars per year from ticket sales and over 20 billion per year from merchandise sales go into the Vatican coffers.

The museum is indeed huge, with many fabulous works of art, culminating with the piece d’resistance, the Sistine Chapel. I am happy that we had been to the museum on numerous other occasions; therefore, leaving early was not too big of a disappointment.

Yesterday, we walked from the apartment up to the Vittorio Emmanuele Monument. That was quite a walk for Frank and his cane, but he did it. We wanted to catch a hop-on, hop-off bus, but at first glance, I could not see a bus stop in the vicinity. I had Frank sit on a bench in a park and wait for me, while I went around the monument until I found the stop. On the way back to get Frank, I discovered a staircase that went up the back of the monument, into Campodoglio, where the Capotoline Museums are. Then I went down another staircase to fetch Frank.

Rome - Dolly TravelsAfter we had seen all we wanted to see, we had lunch at the very lovely restaurant on the roof top of the museum.

We eventually found the hop-on, hop-off bus and took at tour around the center of Rome. By the end of that tour, it was time to head back home again. We had enjoyed another long but entertaining day.

Dinner last night was at the Trattoria Il Tettarella again. This is a very good restaurant inn our neighborhood. It was very busy, as the food is very good. Being in the neighborhood, the trattoria is frequented by locals as much as by tourists.

Tonight, we are having dinner in our apartment. I am going to make soup. I have gone too long without cooking. I simply must do that.

So, I will say, Arrivederci now. I will be certain to tell you how the dinner is.

Ciao for now,

Bella Roma, Ancora – Dolly Travels

Dolly Travels

Buongiorno, tutti,

Yes. Once again, we are in the Eternal City. We have been here 5 days already, so you will think that I am very lax in getting out a blog post. Honestly, although I thought we have been seeing our lovely city at a leisurely pace, we have been busy for these 5 days.

Before I go any further, I want to tell you that renting this apartment in the Monti District, has been one of the best finds of our many trips to Rome, so I will give you the rental information now, just in case I have piqued your interest in Rome enough that you will want to come here, also. Natalia, the landlady, also has apartments in other sections of Rome.

On Friday, we went to our favorite art museum, the Borghese Galleria, up in the northern part of the city. This house belonged for to the Borghese family and the art work is displayed where that family intended it to be displayed. The villa is set within the Borghese Gardens, where there are acres and acres of trees, grass, parks, a small lake; spending some time in the gardens is a good way to unwind. Find a bench, do some reading, rent a bicycle, or pedal cart of some sort and spend a peaceful, fun afternoon.

In the Galleria, there are many sculptures by Gian Lorenzo Bernini. These are in different rooms on the main floor. There are paintings by Caravaggio, an important Italian artist, also on the main floor, then on the second floor are more classical paintings. I always get so mesmerized by the Bernini sculptures that I keep going back to see them. I go upstairs, see the paintings, then go back to the sculptures.

After we had toured the Galleria, we took a taxi to our favorite watering hole, a sidewalk cafe facing the Vittorio Emmanuele monument, where we could have a glass of wine, a light lunch, while watching the organized chaos of the Roman traffic.

Yesterday, we went out to the church of San Giovanni in Laterano, just outside the ancient walls of Rome. The church was built in the 13th century. These dates always take me aback, for when I look at the brickwork of the church and the walls, it is so difficult to imagine the workers putting all that together 800 years ago.

The inside of the church is very beautiful, also. In the main chapel of the church, a ceremony was taking place, so we could not walk through as I had planned; however, we could walk along the aisles outside that main part of the church and view the enormous sculptures of the apostles lining both walls, and see some of the smaller chapels within the church.

Today we went to Piazza Navona, then to the Pantheon, then to Trevi Fountain, and eventually ended up at one of our favorite restaurants, the Abruzzi, on via S.S. Apostolli, near Piazza Venezia.

Frank and I were both concerned before we left, about how much walking he could do over here. He bought a cane, and has been using it. He has done well with all the walking we have done. We are both happy about that. We have also taken taxis for some of our trips, as taxis are very reasonable. The price is usually between 8 Euro and 11 Euro, and for us, it is a Godsend to get us where we need to be without the hassles.

We have also used the Metro system, which is very handy and reasonable priced, also. Our apartment is only a block from the Cavour Metro station. The trains come to the station about every 10 minutes.

We found a very good restaurant near here when we visited Rome last year. We were pleasantly surprised to see that it is about 4 blocks from our apartment. Last night, we found another good restaurant in this Monti neighborhood, so we will be visiting that one again, also.

Gli Angeletti is our favorite. The address is on via Angeletti, but right in the Piazza dei Monti. The other restaurant is called Trattoria Il Tettarello, via dei Capocci, 4. It is also an easy walk from our apartment.

And I, of course, had to throw a coin into the Trevi Fountain, as that means I will return to Roma again. My only concern was that the coin probably landed on another tourist’s head, rather than in the fountain, for there were many tourists there today. I might have to go back and try that again before we leave.

At any rate, we are having a good time; since we have been here many times before, we are seeing the highlights that we had enjoyed on other trips, while finding new places that we had not seen before.

Rome is huge but beautiful and there are new adventures along with the old, around every corner. I love the city, the small areas, the parks, and the people. I know I will return some day before long.

So I will say, Arrivederci. I will write again before long, I promis.

Ciao for now,


By AUTHOR – Full Story at SOURCE

LOCATION Gay Travel Resources

Inside the Roman Colosseum – Keep Calm and Wander

Roman Colosseum - Alain

In my previous post, I showed you the facade of the stunning Roman Colosseum. Now, I’ll bring you inside to see what it’s like while learning a bit of its history. This piece of architectural wonder is a must see when you’re in Rome. Don’t skip it, or else, no one would believe you’ve been in Rome or you’ve been where the gladiators used to fight.

Let me just tell you that the quality of the photos below aren’t that good enough for me. I took it with my iPhone 6s+ (sorry Apple!) after I accidentally damaged my tiny Canon camera. But, then, you know, you’ll get the whole picture of what’s inside the Colosseum.

It is the world’s largest amphitheater (round theater) that can hold 50,000 spectators.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Lazio Gay Travel Resources

The Roman Colosseum Facade – Keep Calm and Wander

Roman Colosseum Facade - Alain

On my very first afternoon in Italy, I decided to walk and see the beauty of the Roman Colosseum facade. I’ve seen this classic architecture a thousand times in postcards and on the pages of hundreds of books I’ve flipped through. I didn’t want to see one side of it only, so I circled around it because it was the right thing to do. I wasn’t just curious but also so thrilled to be in front of such colossal masterpiece of history! I felt pure joy to be finally in Italy!

Italy, as you know, is a country on top of my bucket list. So, you can only imagine how excited I was to be there for the first time. It’s been a month but I can still feel the euphoria I’ve had when the flight attendant announced that we just successfully landed in Rome.

As soon as I got settled in my hostel, I talked to Siri to show me the walking directions to the Roman Colosseum. An hour later (because I had a couple of stops taking street photos), this great symbol of Ancient Rome showed up in front of me. I couldn’t contain my excitement that I had to compose myself by standing still for minutes. I was literally frozen – hypnotized even. It was a surreal feeling that would be with me in a long time.

By Alain – Full Story at Keep Calm and Wander

Rome Gay Travel Resources

Charming Trastevere, Rome – Globetrotter Girls

Trastevere - Dani I was beyond excited to return to Rome at the end of my Italy trip last week – a city I hadn’t been to in many years but that I had truly loved during my previous visits. Since I didn’t have much time, I decided to spend most of my time in Trastevere, my favorite neighborhood in Rome. Located on the west bank of the river (Trastevere translates to across the Tiber (river) ), it has become a favorite with many Rome fans over the years, yet it doesn’t see as many visitors as the part of town on the east bank. Why is that? Because all of Rome’s famous sights, like the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, the Spanish Steps, the Pantheon… are located on the east bank of the Tiber, and most people don’t make it on the other side of the river during their visit to Rome – except for the obligatory stop in Vatican City, which is also on the west bank. What I love about Trastevere is that is the neighborhood in Rome where not only can you find typical Italian architecture, charming piazzas (squares), cobble stone streets (many of which are pedestrianized), many outdoor cafes and restaurants, but also plenty of street art, which gives the neighborhood a bit of an edge.

By Dani – Full Story at Globetrotter Girls

Rome Gay Travel Resources