Based on the acclaimed classic guidebook Romewalks, and featuring an exclusive traveler's Italian tutorial from best-selling language instructor Dr. Robert Blair, Walk and Talk Rome offers the expert guidance that can make you feel at home in this enchanting city, helping you to speak the language as you enjoy the history and beauty of Rome as never before. Make the most of your trip, or plug in, sit back, and let your imagination take you there, with Walk and Talk Rome.
© and (P)2006 Sound Travel and Power-Glide
My wife and I, along with another couple, used this audiobook to tour Rome, and we also used the same series in Florence. We found it very informative and a great way to see sights we never would have seen on a mass tour. It provides interesting information and a little exercise after the Italian cooking. I highly recommend it.
Did some of these walks years ago with the book -tiring to read. These same walks were WONDERFUL on an iPod!! We entered hidden courtyards, 1st noticed things we had passed by every day...etc. etc. etc.
Couldn't rate higher.
I had the best time with this tour. I did all four walks and, as soon as I finished them, did them all over again! They are very accurate, entertaining, informative and fun. I also did the Trastevere walk by Frommer’s, not even close, avoid this one unless you have plenty of time and patience to figure out directions.
I've done 3 of the "Walk and Talk" series -- Rome, Venice, and Florence -- and they were my favorite part of my trip to Italy. You get such a great sense of the city and how people lived.
The subject matter emphasizes architecture and location history, which I happen to love. It's not dry; the narrators share tons of interesting details about art, archways, street names, neighborhoods, and awesome miscellanea you'd never otherwise notice
Each title has 4 walks for that city, each with a 45-minute audio track that takes you on a walk they say lasts 2 hours. I found each took me about 75-90 minutes, with the talking speed at 1.5x. But you can also take it slow and hop in and out of shops along the way, too.
If you use these on your trip, here are some tips:
1. You often need to enter buildings, so take the walks between 9am-12pm or 2-5pm. Many churches and museums are closed outside of these hours. (Better yet, check the hours of the main sites ahead of time; some museums are closed on Mondays, for instance.)
2. Print the associated PDF maps, 1 for each person in your group. It's nigh impossible to follow the directions without them.
3. If you have a few days in Rome/Venice/Florence, consider doing the walks first to get a sense of the city and to help you decide which sights you want to see. You get recommendations about special restaurants to check out, local stores, or out-of-the-way museums to visit. However, if you're only in one of these cities for a day or two, you might want to just head right to the main attractions.
4. Be prepared to spend 2 to 8 euros to enter each of the various churches and museums along the walk; these are always worth it, and usually don't take more than 10-to-30 minutes to see each.
5. I found that a familiarity with Italian history -- specifically Florentine, Venetian, and Roman history -- was helpful in putting some of the factoids in context. The Great Courses series "Italians Before Italy" has great lectures about these cities' history.
Though the content is from 2006 or earlier, it was 95% accurate. Occasionally a store or restaurant mentioned wouldn't be there, or a museum has re-arranged its exhibits, but otherwise no issue. No surprise, I guess; these cities have stayed largely the same for 400+ years, so what's an extra decade?
Each walk is about 5,000-10,000 steps (according to my pedometer), so it's a good workout.
... because this audio tour does NOT include Rome's biggest attractions, such as the Colosseum, Palatine Hill, and the Roman Forum. It seems intended more for those who live in, or visit the city for extended periods, and are looking to see parts of town that are not in most tour guides. Which is fine and good, but my wife and I were also hoping to use this guide to see the main attractions during our very first (4-day) visit to the city, but we were sorely disappointed.
Downloaded this for a trip to Rome, and it was okay, but the walks were VERY limited, and there was supposed to be a PDF with the recording (which you really need to understand the route). It wasn't too difficult to locate the PDF for free online, but only because we found some free wifi.
I would have made the walks significantly different and spaced farther apart.
It was adequate.
I think it should be updated.
"much more fun than a guidebook"
We spent three days in rome recently and combined visiting the main tourist sites - Trevi Fountain, Sistine Chapel etc - with these gentler guided walks. Rome has something interesting round every corner, and this audiobook made us feel we were getting some insight and doing a few things out of the ordinary. It was good to hear the stories of some of the lesser-known sights from someone who got to know Rome as a resident. Much more fun than a guidebook, and we'll look out for more like this for our next city break.
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