The When In Rome Tours story - Part I

  When In Rome Tours was a fly-by-night gathering operation that recruited gangs of African and Cuban enforcers to "own" street corners around St. Peter's Square. Not very respectful. Thousands of lost tourists were corralled then led to a dingy "office" on Via Santamaura then Via Sebastiano Veniero 19 / 21 to pay for a Vatican tour (cash only...).  This unpleasant period of modern Vatican history is known as "St. Peter and the Missing Millions". When In Rome Tours' paper trail is still out there, the busy back room "shredder" didn't destroy all the evidence. Vatican tours "business" was a merry-go-round of money laundering between 2009 - 2019, led by the artful owners of When In Rome Tours.  In 2010, we were brought in to legitimize and digitize When In Rome Tours. That process took an inordinate length of time as cash was king in so far as the "family business" was concerned. In 2020, the pandemic hit tou

Rome tour guides - Dos and don'ts

 A definitive article about this has been a very long time coming, watered-down versions were published on WordPress some years ago but they just skimmed the surface. How did (and still does) tourism in Rome work on the ground? Why are there so many tiny offices dotted around the Vatican Museums, and to a lesser extent, the Colosseum? Who are the foreigners sitting at the desks devouring all the cash and who is behind all of this? Which Rome tour operators are legit today and which ones are to be avoided? Why does this impact upon the quality of your tour guide when in Rome? Find out!  When in Rome, (do pardon the repetition, there is a reason for it), tours have always been about cash, cash, and more cash. These days, a large part of our industry has moved online, but every independent agency and operator began life on the streets of Rome. They would stop at nothing to extract as much cash as possible from tourists to the tune of thousands of dollars every day. All those guys on mo

Fake gladiators caught with masses of cash

 What we're really talking about here is fraud. That a bunch of unscrupulous, unwashed Italian blokes from the rag end of Rome have been scamming tourists for years in front of some of the most spectacular ruins in the world, comes as no surprise. What has been surprising, though, is the negative effect their dirty work has had on our own increasingly popular shared Rome tours , all of which have taken years to develop.  CNN, BBC, The Guardian, Sky News, all suffering from UK riots burn out, decided to headline a story about undercover police in Rome dressing up as the Praetorian Guard, waste disposal experts, and tourists - to infiltrate groups of cash-crazy fake gladiators. Their mission was to get the lowdown on what is upsetting so many people in such beautiful places when the sun is shining and everyone else is out and about enjoying the city.  Tourists have been complaining for years about being charged up to thirty euros for a "gladiator photo", and if they d

Taoiseach Kenny eviscerates the Vatican!

 Pardon the exclamation mark, as none of the above will come as any surprise to those of us who have been following reports of sexual child abuse in the church in County Cork, Ireland. No help has been forthcoming from the Vatican, and Irish bishops claim that they have been somewhat left out in the cold. What help they required above and beyond proper implementation of 1996 legislation "Child Sexual Abuse: Framework for a Church Response", however, is still in need of clarification.  The latest problem involves the Cloyne Report of July 13th. Findings detail the nefarious activities of Cloyne Bishop John Magee, former secretary to three popes. He paid scant attention to cases of sexual child abuse which landed on his desk as recently as 2008. The report states that in his lengthy communications with government officials, Magee claimed that his diocese was correctly reporting all allegations of clerical child sexual abuse to the civil authorities. In fact, he misled an inq

The whys and woes of Vatican tours

  An amazing Vatican tour during the busy high season of July and August is what every tourist wants. However, for every bona fide tour operator and great Vatican tour guide, there are hundreds of illegals. They hang round the Vatican 18 hours a day, gathering and even guiding unsuspecting tourists through what is more often than not the worst Roman holiday experience imaginable.  Imagine a weary eyed back-packing student inviting you to join an "official" Vatican tour as soon as you arrive at the metro station closest to the Vatican museums. This is normal. These gatherers are recruited by tour operators that rent poky offices on the streets that encircle the Vatican City. They call visitors to the Vatican "McDonalds tourists". All of this is an ugly fact of Vatican, indeed Rome tourism that needs to be policed with 100% more conviction.  Almost every street corner around the Vatican museums is owned by (mostly) unlicensed guides, definitively illegal gath

Make money from Rome tours

 Make money from Rome tours by reselling our products and services. Eternal Tours Rome has over thirty tours and activities and you can become part of our success story!  Partners will be allowed to build web pages and develop social profiles to promote our Rome tour products. Generous commissions await and we pay out weekly by Paypal.  For more information about partnering with Eternal Tours Rome, contact:

Vatican tours and MAFIA connection

 Vatican City Tours agency is history. Interestingly, we have learned that owners Thomas Burdick and Charlene Mitchell wrote "Blue Thunder", which investigates the murder of Donald J. Aronow in February 1987. The story involves George Bush, Chicago mobsters, and a colourful list of characters including Red Adair, Evil Knievel, and Ayatollah Khomeini.  The plot thickens in the knowledge that Burdick used to write for Playboy magazine, where he hatched the Aronow story. Burdick led at least one double life. Here in Rome, it was Vatican City Tours.  More news to follow about the Burdick / Mitchell mystery and of course our own tours of the Vatican , which are proving popular on TripAdvisor.