TORONTO — Tourists in Rome looking for a photo opp with a ‘real-life’ Gladiator will be sorely disappointed now that Centurions have been banished from the Eternal City.
City commissioner Francesco Paalo Tronca passed an official decree last Thursday that bans men who dress up as soldiers of the ancient empire and offer to pose for tourist pictures in return for cash, reports CTV News. Drivers of bicycle-drawn rickshaws who sell bus tours or tickets to monuments were also outlawed.
The commissioner, who’s running the city pending the election of a new mayor, said a ban was necessary to protect tourists from scammers who, in recent months, have shown “inappropriate, insistent and sometimes aggressive” behaviour.
The decree comes just in time of the Catholic Jubilee year, which will launch next month. The event is expected to significantly increase tourist arrivals throughout Rome.