Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Day 3: Roaming in Rome

Roma, Italy
It started off being a cloudy day and it even drizzled as we sat out for breakfast.  Today I am off to explore Rome. We hoped on the Caio Rome Open Tour bus to see the sights. Since we booked it via our hotel we got a discount, do check with your hotels for deals. We boarded the bus at Piazza Dell 'Esquilino and we were off.

Stop 1: The Colesseum 
It’s huge. It’s beautiful. It’s wonderful. And it’s ancient! For the time that we were standing in the queue to enter, my imagination went wild. Men is short skirts walking by, lions and gladiators… I touch the columns, the stone and it comes alive. I am in awe. 

It’s hard to describe what you feel. You just got to travel way back in time to enjoy the moment.

Just next to the Colesseum is the Arch of Constantine. It commemorate Constantine I's victory over Maxentius at the Battle of Milvian Bridge on October 28, 312. It’s something you just cannot miss.

Across it is the Palatine Hill housing the most ancient parts of Rome.From here we hop back on the bus and proceed to the Piazza Venezia.

Stop 2: Piazza Venezia
Piazza Venezia takes its name from the adjacent Palazzo Venezia, the former embassy in the city of the Republic of Venice. What’s makes this Piazza a must visit is the imposing monument to Vittorio Emanuele II. Built of pure whit e marble, it honours Victor Emmanuel, the first king of unified Italy.

We then proceed to Piazza San Pierro, all the while passing through some on Rome’s beautiful streets. We also spot the Castle S. Angelo on a hillock and what am amazing sight it is.

As our bus approaches the Holy City or the World’s smallest country – The Vatican, you just cannot help but be filled with awe.

Stop 3: St. Peter’s Basilica
OMG! OMG! OMG! What in imposing structure that symbolizes the beliefs associated with Christianity. It’s like heaven just opened! As a child I remember always seeing this place on TV. Never had I imagined I would be here one day. Suddenly feeling how blessed I was to be here, I rush to send a postcard back home, thanking my parents for funding my trip and for everything they have ever done for me.
St. Peter’s square is magnificent. Intricate mosaics, sculptured pillars, saints on the columns, it’s it’s… hard to describe. We stand in a queue to enter the basilica. There are some hot cute Swiss guards guarding the Papal chambers and areas not open to public. But as we set foot into the basilica, I was zapped and all that came out was “Holy Shit!” Ouch! Tan just nudged me, saying to show some respect. Fine! But I couldn’t help it. From the ceilings to columns to the flooring, everything was perfect. The works of Michaelangelo & Bernini, and numerous artists on display. What a masterpiece each one of them. We took an audio guide and made our way across the basilica, spotting Michaelangelo’s Pieta.

We dint realize just how much time flew by as a result of which we missed visiting the Sistine Chapel. But for that we come back tomorrow.

Tied and having munched on some snacks, we get back on the bus to find the Spanish steps.

Stop 4: Fontana di Trevi
The architecture in Rome is mindblowing, and so are the carvings, sculpting on the façade of Fontana di Trevi. As tradition has it, you have to throw a coin into the fountain and make a wish. A wish that you come back to rome. How convenient. How expensive! Especially as a Euro could have fed me. Anyway some things you just got to do, so i flung my precious Euro and made a wish.
After a bit of posing and clicking pictures, we decided to try out a gelatto. And it was yucks! I have had better ones in India.

Our next stop were the Spanish Steps, but considering how lost and tired we were we decided to skip it.
Having made our way back successfully this time, we stopped atthe local pizzeria for dinner. I had a pasta. Yummy!
It’s just our second night in Rome and it’s time to say goodbye. Tomorrow we head to Bologna, but not before we visit the Sistine Chapel!

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