7July - 20 August 2019
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  • Day2

    Rome Day 1

    July 8, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 32 °C

    After our long flight a little siesta was required. In the evening we had spoilt ourself with a private evening tour around the city of Rome. We visited famous landmarks, The Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, Spanish steps and the Piazza Venezia. We were treated to a beautiful sunset overlooking the city and took time to have a sit in the small orange garden overlooking Rome. Our little companion Mawson wasn't too tied to join us but as the saying almost goes - you can take a penguin to Rome but all he wants to do if find water.!! We experienced the delight of the secret keyhole where if you look through the keyhole in the big green door you will see a garden and through the center of the garden is the Dome of St Peter's perfectly centered. Our trip completed with a complementary bottle of bubbles to help celebrate a Roman holiday. 🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾Read more

    Josephine Ryan

    So many fabulous hot spots. Bet you wanted to jump in the Trevi Fountain or one of the others in Piazza Navona

    7/12/19Reply
    Erin Grant

    Looks like a cozy little cafe!

    8/13/19Reply
     
  • Day3

    Rome Day 2

    July 9, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 25 °C

    Today we did a combined tour covering the Colosseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill in the morning, after lunch, Vatican Museumes, SistineChapel and St Peter's Basilica. The day was very hot with lots of walking and lots of crowds, peak tourist season in mid summer 🌞
    Our morning guide was fantastic, full of knowledge and passion, the afternoon guide, whilst still good was tired and lacked luster. The Palatine Hill is the area Rome was founded. The Colosseum is a symbol of Rome to the world. The amphitheatre created to entertain ancient Roman citizens with bloody shows of gladiators, animals and at times cruelty. We walked along the original path of ancient Rome along the Via Sacra and viewed the Temple of Vesra, Antonio and Faustina, the ancient Basilica Julia and Aemilia, a vision of Rome glorious past.
    The Vatican Museums are within Vatican City and comprise several exhibitions housed within several museum galleries and hold important world art collections, exquisite tapestries, geographical maps, statues and other works. The breathtaking Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel ceiling, began to be painted by the young Michelangelo's May 1508 and was completed 1512 depecting stories from the book of Genesis.
    The greatest church in Christendom is St. Peter's Basilica with Michelangelo's mighty dome an iconic Roman landmark and it is within this Church that the tomb of St Peter can be found.
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    Josephine Ryan

    I love the Forum and remember being there reading my first letters from home after travelling for 2 months in 1982! As for the mosaics and frescoes..... What's not to love.

    7/12/19Reply
     
  • Day4

    Naples

    July 10, 2019 in Italy ⋅ 🌧 29 °C

    On our tour to Pompeii, we visited the city of Naples on the Mediterranean coast. The day was very hot and overcast making our veiw from Vomero Hill over the bay of Naples limited. It was not possible to see the Island of Capari, however our guide assured it was there even though not visable. The buildings boarding the sea were so colourful, huge cruise ships dominated the wharf. Just beyond all the glamour of the coast you could see how the workers lived, housing not so glamorous and washing hanging from every window. Poor visibility and cloud made the still active volcano Vesuvius not the dominating presence it would hold on a clear day.Read more

    Josephine Ryan

    Naples had such a bad reputation when proceeds of crime, pick pocketing and the like, used to be considered by local govt as part of people's income so they didn't have to address poverty. Love the buildings.

    7/12/19Reply
     
  • Day4

    Pompeii

    July 10, 2019 in Italy ⋅ 🌧 30 °C

    Under the watch of the sleeping Mount Vesuvius is the town of Pompeii. The ruins at Pompeii are one of the most important archaeological sites in the world : a UNESCO world heritage site. The eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD destroyed the city, killing its inhabitants and burying it under tons of Ash. The site was lost for about 1,500 years until its initial rediscovery and the objects beneath the city have been well-preserved for centuries. We walked along the ancient streets taking a glimpse into the lives of the Romans, seeing evidence of ancient houses, bakeries, shops and images of everyday life at the time of the eruption. We saw the haunting image of a man attempting to shield himself from the ash, now captured in time. Large earthenware pots, a stone bed, stairs, streets and original lead pipes that carried water around the town, we wondered just how many of the inhabitants were effected by the lead ! We saw house number 29 our home number,but the 29 is actually the excavation site number. Today, active digging can be seen in the ruins.
    Adjacent to the ruins is the current thriving town of Pompeii, there was even Pompeii bingo which gave us a laugh, who said Pompeii is in ruins, just the people playing Bingo 😆
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    Josephine Ryan

    Such a tragic image. To know that it was a real person, not a sculpture. I think this statue sums up Pompeii's tragedy. It's the ordinary possessions, remnants of daily life that are most affecting.

    7/12/19Reply
     
  • Day6

    London

    July 12, 2019 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    We have spent a few busy but fantastic days in London. We both really like this city, so many green spaces and the people enjoying their parks, so many stretched out on the grass, or simply sitting on the grass soaking up the serenity.
    Yesterday we took a full day tour of London, seeing the expanse of green grass and huge trees of Hyde Park, Westminster Abbey, changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, and beautiful St. James's Park. We crossed over the famous Tower Bridge and our guide took us through the Tower of London with a good look at the spectacular crown jewels, and then on a guided tour of the magnificent St Paul's Cathedral. Our trip concluded with a cruise down the Thames, which was made so much more entertaining by the hilarious running commentary by the Captain
    With a lot of help from family before arriving in London we managed The Tube with no problems. Today we hope to head off to Kew Gardens, just waiting for the showers to clear up.
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    Josephine Ryan

    Ahh. The relief of an airconditioned airport and the prospect of a good night's sleep. Hello UK.

    7/12/19Reply
     
  • Day6

    Natural History Museum, London

    July 12, 2019 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    The Natural History Museum in London is a museum that exihibits a vast range of specimens from various segments of natural history. Some of the many photos we took are :
    1 The nest of the Maiasaura, a duck billed plant eating dinosaur that herded across Northern America was discovered in Montana
    The hatchling were brought seeds, leaves and berries by their parents.
    2 Through the large molten rock you entered the world of volcanos, earthquakes and other vast forces that bent and twisted the Earth to create the structure we have today.
    3 The Woolly Rhino, a creature from another climate, inhabitanted the cold northern hemisphere, this specimen was preserved so well because it was trapped in a natural oil seep. The chemicals of the oil destroyed most of the hair and horn but the skin and skeleton survived This woolly rhino is 45,000 years old.
    4 The museum, a grand structure in itself.
    5 Pele's hair is the beautiful thread like hair that formed when tiny pieces of magma are thrown in the air and spun by the wind into volcanic glass.
    6. The vast forces that bend and twist the earth's surface are recorded in these folded bands of light and dark material, the rock being created as it was heated and squeezed deep underground.
    7.The fossilised tortoise dating up to 34 million years ago, USA
    8. A large replica of the moon
    9.Human evolution.
    10.Every earth history needs a dinosaur head,!
    Read more

    Josephine Ryan

    This elegant building is one of my favourites: the colours, the little animal details on columns and its grandeur. To say nothing of the extraordinary contents. Can't wait to hear about the things you saw.

    7/12/19Reply
    Alisha Grant

    Strike a pose!

    7/13/19Reply
    Trip One

    what's that?

    7/13/19Reply
     
  • Day7

    St Pauls Cathedral, London

    July 13, 2019 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    We had a guided tour of St Paul's Cathedral which is crowned by the magnificent dome that is so much a part of the London skyline. The cathedral was rebuilt after the Great Fire of London in 1666, and is one of the largest churches in the world. In recent years it has seen the wedding of Charles, Prince of Wales, to Lady Diana Spencer and more recently, the thanksgiving services for both the Diamond Jubilee and the 80th birthday of Her Majesty the Queen. Designed by the famous architect Christopher Wren, it boasts both an outer and inner dome. The cathedral was hit by several German bombs during World War 2. One was removed before it exploded, had it done so, it would have totally destroyed St Paul's.
    The cathedral 's crypt is the largest in Western Europe and extends the entire length of the building.
    Sir Christopher Wren was the first to be buried in St Paul's Cathedral. The cathedrals largest monument is that to the Duke of Wellington, depicting the Duke riding a horse.
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    Alisha Grant

    Beautiful!

    7/15/19Reply
    Josephine Ryan

    Maria and I went to a service led by the choir. The sound was inspiring.

    7/15/19Reply
     
  • Day8

    Kew Gardens

    July 14, 2019 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    A visit to one of the largest, 121 hectares, botanical gardens in the world is a perfect break from the London city vibe. There is a diverse collection of beautiful plants, especially the many majestic trees, stunning landscapes and the magnificent recently restored glasshouse. Along one of the many pathways was a sign to announce the entrance to a hidden badger hole - a little treat us Aussies don't see.Read more

    Alisha Grant

    Lovely photos

    7/15/19Reply
    Josephine Ryan

    Did you get some inspiration for your garden? I love the glass house: it looks so fragile. I bet it was a welcome retreat from the streets.

    7/15/19Reply