Sprinting Around Rome

Rome Travel Blog

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Roma, Italy: 5/19/08

            Arriving in Rome we grabbed a cab and went straight to our hotel. Dropped off the bags and off we went to do a whirlwind tour of Rome . Our hotel is right near the Piazza Venezia and the Museo del Risorgiemtno, which is a huge building like none that I have ever seen before. Enormous statues are on the rooftop of this building and along the stairs. After a quick walk through the museum and up to the top floor for a quick birds eye view of the city we were off to the Pantheon. Pictures of this place do not even come close to doing it any justice. Standing in front of this building I started to feel like I was actually in Italy . The crowd was not too bad so we went in and walked around, after awhile we took a seat and I got out my MP3 player to listen to a Rick Steves’ audio tour of the Pantheon. On Rick Steves’ website I was able to download some audio files of sights in Italy . We then headed over to Trevi Fountain; Dave said it looked much better than the last time he saw it in ’96. There was a mass of people just hanging out here but I was still able to walk around and toss some change into the fountain. Makes me wonder how much money they pull out of that fountain each year? I am sure the number would shock most people! Legend has it if you toss one coin into the fountain you will have a speedy return to Rome , two and you will fall in love there, three and wedding bells will be in the near future. Not knowing this until I just read it in the guide book, I tossed three coins back over my shoulder into the fountain. Well mom I guess you will be happy. Haha!

Next up was the Colosseum; the line was not too bad so I jumped in line and had a short ten minute wait. I listened to another Rick Steves’ audio tour as I walked all over the Colosseum. Again this is another structure that pictures just don’t do it justice. The one my friend Colin and I visited in Pula Croatia in the fall of ’06 is much more in tact, but this one is ENOURMUS! The skies opened up and the rain began to team down as we ran back to the hotel.

I waited for a bit before changing into some pants so I could get into St. Peter’s Basilica; didn’t want to walk all the way down there and get stopped by the pants Nazi’s. I made record time walking down to Vatican City , reached it in 15 minutes (the same distance on the way back took me over 30 at my regular pace).

Arriving at the Vatican sweat pouring off me I headed straight into St. Peter’s; there was no line this time of the day ( 17:00 ). What a place this is! I was taken back by the sheer magnitude of its beauty and grand size. At the same time I shook my head about the cost this place must have exacted on the people. Being raised a Catholic I can appreciate the significance of going to this “ Mecca ”, but too me personally the true grand cathedrals will be seen in a few days when I get to Switzerland (The Alps).

I spent a few hours just walking around the Basilica taking it all in before I headed out to St. Peter’s Square. Add the Vatican City and all 108.5 acres of it to my list of countries I have now been too. I did not have the time to get into the Sistine Chapel, I will just add it to my list of things I need to do next time.

By the time I got back to the hotel my feet were a barking. It had been a very long day of walking all over the city of Rome . After a late dinner (I had another good pizza) I was ready for some shuteye.

Next stop Florence .

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photo by: vulindlela