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Off to Rome

Rome Travel Blog

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I have always wanted to visit the Colossuem in Rome but never got around to it. So, on a random day off work I decided why not now? I booked a flight from London Gatwick to Rome Fuimicino and after taking the Leonardo Express I arrived at Rome's Termini Station at around 11am. I had found the quickest way to the Colosseum on a map whilst on the plane however as I tend to do, wandered off after a little while. I purchased a coffee and made my way down Via Cavour, soon after I passed the Subway station I decided to head up a quirky, cobbled side street. Then I stumbled upon a fantastic basilica named 'San Pietro in Vincoli', which is home of Michelangelo's magnificent statue of Moses.
Afterwards as I made my way through the side streets, the magnificent piece of architecture that is the Roman Colosseum appeared seemingly form nowhere and drew the breath from my lungs. I lost track of time as I wandered through the stone structure that was once the centre of attention of a great city, and still is in many ways.  I also read much about the history of The Arch of Constantine and gazed out over Palatine Hill. My stomach told me that I had been there long enough and so I wandered through some of the surrounding back streets until I stumbled upon a tourist-free restaurant, where I had a beautiful 4 cheese pizza baked in a stone oven, of course. Refuelled I headed back to the main street and made my way to Piazza Venizia where I stopped off to admire 'Le monument à Victor-Emmanuel II'.
I think this site is under-rated as it was one of the most extravagant structures I saw on my trip, and the views from the top were impressive. I didn't have time to tour the museum inside because I was on limited time and had much more too see! I made my way to the next stop on my journey, which was the Pantheon. Upon entering it is hard not to look up right away at the huge dome that dominates the building, however the true beauty lies in the symbolic design and layout, and most of all the tomb of Raphael. The sculptures here are second to none and it is easy to appreciate them. A short walk away from the Pantheon was my penultimate stop, Piazza Navona. The main reason I wanted to stop here was to see first hand another masterpiece of Bernini, 'Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi' - Fountain of the four Rivers.
I sat for a little while on the side of the fountain and part of me wanted to get in and touch the obelisk! I resisted the urge though as I had one more stop to make. So after tearing myself away from the Piazza I resisted the urge to look at the map in my bag and wandered aimlessly through the narrow alleyways, simply observing the real day to day habits of the Roman people. I couldn't help but notice the amount of people drinking wine and I thought to myself "I could live like that". Well eventually the narrow alleyways and cobbled streets ran out and I found myself out on the main road once again. After finding my bearings I headed towards the final stop my journey, St. Peter's Square. Time was ticking so I couldn't stay long however I got a real feel for the place and got up close to the obelisk. I just about had time to grab a quick bite to eat before heading back to Termini station. My feet were aching but the day was a complete success! I did leave a LOT out, though that is just to make sure I go back soon!! Next time I will be going for a day or two as I want to see the beauty of Rome at night. I encourage anyone and everyone to visit this city, you will not be disappointed.
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photo by: vulindlela