The Perfect Mother-Daughter (or Son) Trip To Rome
Mothers in every country and culture are extremely special to the people who love them and the communities they live in. Italians know and understand this; the Italian ‘mamma,’ often the matriarch of the family, is revered and relished. Adult children are forever indebted to their mothers and thankful for the years of undivided attention, unwavering affection, and the seemingly never-ending supply of wholesome nutrition, including daily plates of freshly cooked vegetables, meat, and pasta.
Even once they have left home, which is on average much later in life than other countries, and have started families of their own, Italians dote upon their mothers. They call and visit them frequently, continuing to nurture the warmth, closeness, and love in the relationship. Many Italians have lunch with their parents every Sunday. Also, they almost always include their parents in at least one family vacation per year, often during Italy’s glorious summers, and organize trips, so that they can all spend quality time together.
Italy’s tradition of treasuring mothers has existed throughout history and this is especially apparent in religion. As Catholics, above all Italians cherish the ‘Madonna,’ or the lady Mary and her child, Jesus. It was a Catholic priest who first encouraged Italians to embrace dedicating a full day to mothers. In 1957, about fifty years after the U.S. had adopted Mother’s Day, in the small, hilltop town of Assisi in the Umbria region, this priest suggested that the second Sunday in May should be used to celebrate the ceaseless, earnest, and indispensable work of Italian women and mothers. As nearby towns and cities heard about this idea of having a special day to value mothers’ contributions to their families and communities, it quickly spread lovingly through Italy. The day became so popular that in 1958, the Italian government officially declared the second Sunday in May, ‘La Festa della Mamma.’ Among other countries, the U.S. also celebrates Mother’s Day on this same day in May.
No matter what day it is, mothers deserve to be celebrated. They have earned the right to enjoy, relax, and adventure, and it is especially delightful for them to be able to do with this their dear children, even if they are grown up. Why not embark on a trip of your own together?
Italy, the where land mothers are esteemed and worshipped in both the home and at church, as well as in the community, is one of the best places for mothers and their grown daughters or sons to travel to. Italy’s cosmopolitan capital city of Rome is the perfect destination, because not only is the sun usually shining and Romans always welcoming, friendly, and proud to share their culture, there are plenty of sights, tastes, and experiences for parents and adult children to bond over together.
Travel to ‘bella Roma’ and you are bound to make your mother smile. If you time the trip with Italy’s ‘La Festa della Mamma, ’ you most definitely will create memories of a lifetime. Rome is a large and historic city, one that you can spend decades getting to know. Follow the suggestions below, so that you and your mother have an unforgettable time together in Rome.
Mornings are for ‘Mamma’
Mornings for Italians, even on Mother’s Day, are not too extravagant. However, they are definitely worth tyring, because Italian breakfasts are absolutely tasty and also, very cheap. Treat your ‘mamma’ to a typical Italian breakfast, which is usually a fresh pastry, such as a ‘cornetto’ filled with cream, jam, honey, or chocolate, and a ‘cappuccino’ or ‘espresso.’ There are many traditional ‘bars’ in Rome, but two exceptionally good ones are ‘Pasticceria Barberini’ in the Testaccio neighborhood, which dates back to 1925, and the speciality coffee shop near Rome’s main train station, Termini called ‘Faro – Luminar del Caffè,’ which brings a modern twist to traditional Italian coffee.
After your light Italian breakfast, go on a walking tour of the markets in ‘Campo de’ Fiori,’ which is famous for its daily fresh produce market, and the nearby historic Jewish ghetto. Beginning at 10:30am, tour goers will sample food and wine at nine different artisanal shops and stalls. Book your morning market walk and food tourbefore arriving and experience the true flavors of Rome together.
There are numerous options for mothers and grown children to spend their days in Rome. You really can spend a lifetime in the Eternal City and still have new things to explore. If you have been to Rome more than once, read this guide for some alternative activities in Rome for frequent visitors.
Rome is one of the best places in the world for walking around and taking in the historic beauty of the city, which is especially fitting since Rome is also one of the best places for eating your heart out. Walk your mother through some of the cities most magical parks and gardens, including Rome’s biggest public park, ‘Villa Doria Pamphili.’ The park has a gorgeous seventeenth century stately home with a luxuriously landscaped gardens, as well as sprawling, hilly grounds full of ornate pieces of ancient structures and exotic fountains hidden in the greenery.
Another dreamy place to take a leisurely stroll is ‘Villa Borghese,’ which as stunning views overlooking Rome’s iconic ‘Piazza del Popolo,’ English style lawns, and a quaint pond full of turtles and rowboats to rent. Unlike Villa Pamphilia, the grand seventeenth century home in the Borghese park is a public art museum. ‘Galleria Borghese’ has an expansive collection of classic Italian paintings and sculptures. Reserve tickets for the entrance fee and a mesmerizing Galleria Borghese tour beforehand.
Rome’s most picturesque area that is not a green space to explore and walk in, is the neighborhood of Trastevere. Meander through the warm-colored, winding streets with cobblestones underfoot and luscious ivy, bougainvillea, and drying laundry above. Become acquainted with the irresistible neighborhood through a tour of Trastevere, which includes a visit to the little island, ‘Isola Tiberina’ in Rome’s nearby Tiber river and a look at Trastevere’s impressive bridges, churches, and buildings. Do not miss going inside the charming church and admiring the enchanting fountain in the center of ‘Piazza di Santa Maria in Trastevere.’ Also, the sixteenth century Renaissance palace, ‘Villa Farnesina’ is an off the beaten path attraction in the neighborhood. Take in the glorious, enclosed courtyard, detailed architecture, and sophisticated art inside the villa.
Go shopping with you mother on some of Rome’s main shopping streets, which include the grand, ’Via del Corso’ and ‘Via Condotti’ as well as streets like ‘Via Marconi,’ which are frequented more by locals. Rome also has many fantastic, well-priced artisanal shops and smaller, more intimate boutiques. Wander the little streets around ‘Campo di Fiori’ and ‘Piazza Navona.’ They are full of one of a kind shopping opportunities with shops selling everything from irresistible Italian made clothes and authentic leather bags to intricately leather bound books and handmade furniture.
Near ‘Circo Massimo,’ explore the wondrous, well-preserved ruins of what used to be Rome’s second largest public bath house, the ‘Terme di Caracalla’ or Baths of Caracalla. Their construction was finished under the rule of Emperor Caracalla in 216 AD. If you and your mother would like to experience the Roman thermal bath experience, book a spa day just outside of Rome. Two exquisite thermal bath houses are ‘QC Terme’ and ‘Terme di Stigliano.’ QC Terme lies between the center and Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci Fiumicino Airport and is inspired by ancient Rome’s spa practices, while Terme di Stigliano, with five soothing natural hot springs, is about ninety minutes from the city center.
When in Rome, you and your mother should indulge in as much gelato as possible. Gelato is a sweet staple in Italy, especially during the summer, and in Rome this is no exception. Taste the creamy heavenliness of the gelato and homemade whipped cream at one of Rome’s ‘La Romana’ locations. This delicious ‘gelateria,’ which prides itself in the quality of its products, has been around since 1947. If you are both crazy about gelato and want to try as many flavors as possible, go to the gelateria, ‘Della Palma,’ near Piazza Navona, which always has over 150 ‘gusti,’ or flavors, for customers to choose from.
Not only is Rome beautiful by day, but it also comes alive at night. Rome has several incredible theaters with many professional performances. After dining out with you mother, decide on a show together. There are classic operas and ballets at the sophisticated ‘Teatro dell’Opera’ and more modern plays, musicals, and musical performances at ‘Teatro Brancaccio’ and ‘Teatro Sistina.’Rome’s smaller, almost 300-year-old theatre, the acclaimed ‘Teatro Argentina’ offers dramatic plays, symphonies, and operas.
Another lively option for you and your mother is to have a typical Italian ‘aperitivo,’ but with a creative twist. An aperitivo is a favorite pastime for Italians to catch up with each other after work. You pay a very low, fixed price for a drink of your choosing and a freshly prepared buffet of Italian food. In Trastevere, the eclectic, but relaxed bar called Alembic has an appetizing aperitivo and hosts ‘Paint and Wine Nights’ for English and Italian speakers. If you and your mother are creative types or just want to try something new, go, mingle, and paint.
Finally, Rome, glowing with radiance generated from the city and the natural moonlight, must also be explored on foot in the dark. This does not mean it has to be late, only after sunset. Reserve ahead to join a Night Tour of Rome, starting at 5:00pm. This well-organized tour takes people through the sights that are the most beautiful at night, including Rome’s inspiring domed ‘Pantheon,’ immense and majestic ‘Fontana di Trevi’ or Trevi Fountain, and spectacular ‘Scalinata di Trinità dei Monti’ or the Spanish Steps. Breathe in the vibrant night air and think of how lucky you are, as mothers and daughters or mothers and sons, to be together in one of the world’s most beautiful cities.
Enjoy the quality time with your mother, daughter, or son in Rome, and no matter what time of year it is from all of us here, ’Buona Festa della Mamma’ or Happy Mother’s Day!