Across the river from the centre of town, on the right bank of the Tiber, the district of Trastevere was the artisan area of the city in classical times, neatly placed for the trade that came upriver from Ostia to be unloaded nearby. Outside the city walls, Trastevere (the name means “across the Tiber”) was for centuries heavily populated by immigrants, and this separation lent the neighbourhood a strong identity that lasted well into the twentieth century. Nowadays it’s a long way from the working-class quarter it used to be, often thronged with tourists, lured by the charm of its narrow streets and closeted squares. However, it is among the most pleasant places to stroll in Rome, particularly peaceful in the morning, lively come the evening, as dozens of trattorias set tables out along the cobbled streets, and still buzzing late at night when its bars and clubs provide a focus for one of Rome’s most dynamic night-time scenes.
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