Romehttps://iamphab.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/IMG_1942-e1536059645806.jpg480640I am Phab BebingtonI am Phab Bebingtonhttps://iamphab.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/IMG_1942-e1536059645806.jpg
Rome, the first part of our amazing adventure, we arrived at Rome around 9pm so it was very warm and we couldn’t see much ! when we arrived we had so much help from the airport everything ran smoothly getting off the plane to collecting our bags and finding our transport.
When we arrived at our hotel ( hotel Quirinale ) it was completely accessible, the rotating doors were opened into normal doors for the chair to get through and the lifts were nice and big giving enough room for the chair, the room itself was lovely and our bathroom was accessible with a stool provided.
the colosseum was fantastic we were able to exchange our tickets at the ticket box straight away no major queue and we were told to go to a specific entrance allowing for jai and his chair to go straight through, the lifts were spacious and easy to use which was helpful to get up and down the different sections and also the colosseum itself was fairly accessible in terms of the different levels allowing us to see just as much as everyone else, which was absolutely amazing as we were quite shocked at how accessible the colosseum was.
The Vatican, now this was something else when we arrived it was packed and we had booked a private tour so we had to wait for our tour guide outside a cafe and then he took us around to the security area to get checked in and have proof of identity for all of us ( this is including disability cards and passports ) once we were through security we then took the elevator to the Vatican gardens as this area was accessible.
During our tour through the Vatican and the museums we came to the Sistine chapel, we were able to travel to the end of the museums just before the sistine chapel but there wasn’t access through the front so we had to walk around the museum to get to the exit which had a stair lift for wheelchairs and then we had access through the exit with ramps, once we were in the chapel we then had a few guards move people out of the way allowing jai to see the surrounding chapel whilst being able to freely move around in his wheelchair.
St Peter’s Basilica was fantastic we were able to travel around with easy access including ramps and lifts and during our visit with the basilica their was a ramp over the stairs to allow chairs access, this building was fantastic because although their were stairs to other areas which weren’t accessible their was still so much to see.
Trevi fountain, whilst we were touring around we walked to the Trevi fountain to see what all the fuss was about and wow… it is beautiful and it is quite easy to find and to get access to apart from a few steps to get closer to the fountain ( this is always packed with people pushing to take photos ) also whilst we were walking around the Trevi fountain of course there is pebbled flooring which was a struggle at times, for example getting the front wheels stuck in gaps in the floor but it was manageable to resolve the situation.
Whilst in rome we had a hop on hop off tour ticket with “City Sightseeing” a company allowing you to see all the major sightings around the city, we used this and honestly the people were amazing always offering help and always checking to see if the next bus had a ramp or not and this helped us because it gave jai the confidence to drive into the buses and allowed him to move freely into his specific space on the buses.
Finally our train from Rome to Florence, we had to say goodbye to Rome and start our journey to Florence, whilst we were in Rome we were told about “Sala Blu” this company allows you to efficiently change tickets to better setting for wheelchair users and they help you getting on and off the trains communicating with the destination station to help take you off the train and assist you.