Italy
Rome

Here you’ll find travel reports about Rome. Discover travel destinations in Italy of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

429 travelers at this place:

  • Day31

    The Colosseum

    July 28 in Italy

    The main attraction of the ancient city of Rome would have to be the Colosseum. This really is an amazing structure. The scale of this building takes one's breath away. Even today it is a huge theatre. The incredible thing is that it was built 2000 years ago. It was built using the Jewish money and Jewish slave labour the was taken from Jerusalem in the successful Roman siege of Jerusalem in AD 70. Some cheeky New York Jews have been known to make the point that it really should be regarded as a Jewish building given that it was built using Jewish money, labour resources and expertise.

    The Colosseum was Nero's gift to the Romans to entertain them and buy their support for his rule and policy. He opened the theatre with a festival which went for 100 days during which spectacles were held every morning, midday and afternoon. It was gladiators versus animals in the morning. It was executions during lunchtime, often involving criminals being thrown to wild animals, being crucified or being killed by the Roman sword. In the afternoons it was fighting to the death between gladiators. Sometimes the gladiators numbered in their hundreds. It was reported in the displayed information that 11,000 gladiators were involved in one festival.

    The Colosseum is a testimony to the cruelty of man. It represents the kinds of conduct that even the most sophisticated ancient society was involved in. Human beings are not much better than animals when such sport is the preferred entertainment of the people.

    The arena was at times filled with water and naval battles took place using full-size naval ships. Sometimes the drama of the event told the story of famous battles the Roman emperor felt should be told to communicate their greatness.

    The Colosseum is one of the best places we visited.
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  • Day31

    The Old City of Rome

    July 28 in Italy

    Today we ventured out to see the main ancient and cultural sights of Rome. We walked a long way, but were rewarded with seeing some amazing things. We saw Piazza Navona, The Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, the Spanish Steps, Trajan's column, Hadrian's column, to name just a few. We really walked a long way and it is tough on the feet walking on the cobbled streets of Rome all day. We did feel like pinching ourselves at times as we walked past such amazing places.Read more

  • Day31

    After visiting the Colosseum, we went for a walk up the Palatine Hill and through the ancient Roman Forum. This was the centre of the city in ancient Roman times. The forum was where all the main city squares, Temples and Administrative buildings were located. There are huge areas being excavated and they are uncovering more archaeology all the time.

    In this area, we saw the Arch of Constantine, the famous arch of Titus celebrating the victorious siege of Jerusalem in AD 70 and the arch of Septimus Severus. We also climbed Palatine hill to see the amazing view the emperor's of Rome had from their palatial location on the top of the hill. We also saw the location of the Temple of Julius Caesar, his burial location, in the centre of the forum area.Read more

  • Day19

    Florence to Rome

    September 26, 2017 in Italy

    We took the speed train to Rome this morning, arriving in early afternoon. The trains travel at a speed of over 200 mph, but it never felt like it. On the other hand, the taxi ride to our hotel was much more exciting. We only had a short opportunity to sightsee today as we picked up our tickets for tomorrow's Papal audience! Early start in the morning.

  • Day20

    Rome now and in the past

    September 27, 2017 in Italy

    Yup, that's the Pope! We got up early to get to Saint Peter's Square for a papal audience today. We followed the advice of the priest who handled the tickets and got into a position for a close up photo op. Very exciting day. The man was about 6 feet from us.
    We also took a walking tour of the Colosseum and other historic sites this evening. We are tired, but content. Sistin Chapel tomorrow.

  • Day278

    Laghetto

    March 31, 2017 in Italy

    Sorry for the recent lack of updates: Vicky has had a knitting project with a deadline- nearly finished now though!

    There isn't much to say about Laghetto. Our previous night had been spent more than 80km from Rome and we hadn't wanted to spend half a day driving before arriving in the capital. Laghetto was marked as a free car park on the outskirts of Rome. From here it would be a short drive to the central stopover. It was beside a few independent shops, eateries and a very busy main road. There was no sign indicating it was a designated stopover so we parked near the road to minimise any obstruction to shoppers. The vehicle noise made it a noisy night and Poppy got scared by the dogs who barked at her from multiple locations and the strays she saw wandering when she went out for the toilet. However, it served its purpose and we set off for our adventures in Rome the following morning.Read more

  • Day278

    Rome Day 1

    March 31, 2017 in Italy

    We made it to the large car park with a €20 per night camper stop and services at about 11am. An attendant showed us to our bay and after ensuring Poppy was ok, we grabbed our sun hats and set off to experience Italy's capital city!

    It was about a 2km walk to reach the edge of the historical centre. The area we passed through had many high rise buildings and seemed neglected. There were several homeless people and a market selling piles of clothes for €1 per item. We took a short cut through a park but it was strewn with litter. People had tried to keep it clean by using the bins but the authorities obviously hadn't emptied them in a while, it seemed they were more focused on the presentation of the tourist areas than the cleanliness of residential amenities.

    Our first port of call was the grandiose Colloseum whose scale it was difficult to get a perspective on. Pushy touts swarmed around the tourist hive and we nearly got roped into giving a seller money, literally. He spun us a yarn and put bracelets on our wrists as 'gifts', before asking for money for his baby. It ended with us placing the bracelets on a railing because he refused to take them back. After 30 minutes queuing for tickets and being processed in the airport style scanners, we were finally in. We've seen a few Roman ampitheatres on our travels and this was the most imposing. Others have had a beauty to them, but we found this huge structure's allure was the solid strength it exuded. Perhaps the difference was due to how intact the ancient building was.

    A visit to a gelateria refuelled us with some interesting flavours of ice cream, green tea, cointreau and orange peal to name a few. We'd entered the historical centre of Rome by now and couldn't believe the concentration of majestic historic structures. No other city we have visited even comes close. Everywhere we turned there was something to look at, whether crumbled ruins or towering columns supporting well maintained roofs. We stumbled accross many things that would appear spectacular in other cities but faded in significance in the midst of all the other grand places.

    The temperature was well into the 20s so we sought refuge inside an air conditioned restaurant for a healthy(ish) lunch of simple pizza and cous cous with vegetables.

    From several different points around the city we'd seen a splendid white columned building with bronze effigies of horse drawn chariots and winged charioteers on top. It turned out to be the Vittoriano, a 20th century construction that among other things, provided views over the city from its terrace and for a price, access to the top level for an even better perspective. It felt like we walked miles around this huge place trying to find the way in, not that there wasn't sights to amuse us along the way! Our favourite was a piazza containing huge statues, most of them in white marble but some in bronze. We felt dwarfed by their sheer size and number. Once inside the Vittoriano, a richly decorated building with large moulded roses on its arched ceiling, we climbed up and looked out over the terrace on to the tops of domes and stone buildings. We had planned to go all the way to the top but it was getting late and the sun was shining from behind the main views, making them difficult to see to best effect.

    Our last visit of the day was to the Pantheon, a circular building with marble pillars arranged in a rectangle at the front, so as to provide an impressive wide entrance. From the outside, its rounded brick walls were nothing much to look at, save for their size, but the interior design and works of art were stunning. The building was beautifully proportioned and its ornately decorated walls, with alcoves for statues or frescoes, led up to a more simplistic domed roof, in the centre of which was a 8.7m wide circular opening (the oculus), to the blue sky above.

    More than a little tired and overwhelmed with all we'd seen, we returned to our stopover. There were several areas for campers and one of these seemed to be devoted to people who we supposed to be living there full time. Perhaps it was cheaper than renting an apartment?
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  • Day39

    Rome

    October 11, 2016 in Italy

    We spent a few days Rome-ing around the eternal city which is full of history around every corner! We enjoyed walking down small alleys to come across big plazas where locals were enjoying a cup of coffee or a glass of wine.

    Over 2,000 years ago the ancient Romans built the city and many of its wonders that still exist today. We toured the Colosseum and Roman Forum which gave us a glimpse into the lives of the Romans. It's pretty impressive to think that they could engineer such amazing buildings and structures with the basic technology they had. Our favorite though was the Pantheon which was built as a Roman temple and is the best preserved ancient building to this day because it has been in use ever since; today as a church.

    We also visited the Vatican which consists of the Vatican museum full of ancient art (and lots of tourists), the Sistine Chapel home to the Pope and Michelangelo's famous ceiling painting and the St. Peter's Basilica which is full of ornate marble statues and mosaic art work all over.

    Lastly we can't forget to mention that we ate a lot of Italian food and gelato to start off our visit to Italy!
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  • Day38

    Finally site for the day was the Jesuit church of Saint Ignazio. This church was meant to have a glorious dome but when the money ran out in 1642, the plans were scrapped. Instead of foregoing the dome entirely, painter and Jesuit brother Andrea Pozzo proposed he paint a life-sized illusion of a dome that would fool the eyes of visitors (as long as they looked up from the proper angle). His masterpiece still fools the eye today. Painted between 1685 and 1694, it is a remarkable piece of perspective work.

    Pozzo also created the second
    trompe l'œil fresco on the nave ceiling, showing St Ignatius Loyola being welcomed into paradise by Christ and the Madonna. While the dome is painted in dark colours, predominantly blacks, the second art work is glorious in colour and design.

    Both pieces are very impressive while the painting on the nave ceiling fools the eye wherever you are standing, you do have to be in the right spot to be “tricked” by the fake dome.
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  • Day37

    Cimitero Acattolico, Rome

    October 5 in Italy

    We had a bit of a slower start today, thanks to having such a great afternoon/evening with Tony and Deb. It was so great to catch up again and have a touch of home.

    This morning we decided to master the bus system here in Rome and make our way to the The Cimitero Acattolico, the Non-Catholic Cemetery, often referred to as the Cimitero dei protestanti, Protestant Cemetery, or Cimitero degli Inglesi, Englishmen's Cemetery. It is the final resting place of non-Catholics including but not exclusive to Protestants or British people.

    The earliest known burial is that of a University of Oxford student named Langton in 1738. The English poets John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley are buried there. Keat’s tombstone does not name him as per his wishes. Instead it reads “Here lies one whose name is writ in water”.

    The cemetery is also the location of the original Angel of Grief or the Weeping Angel. It is an 1894 sculpture by William Wetmore Story for the grave of his wife Emelyn Story. Its full title bestowed by the creator was The Angel of Grief Weeping Over the Dismantled Altar of Life. This was Story's last major work prior to his death, a year after his wife.

    There is such a feeling of tranquility, beauty and freedom there. All of the graves are adorned with tombstones, some elaborate, some very simple, and they are all covered with bushes, vines and flowers. Definitely not like our staid cemeteries at home with all their rules and regulations. It was a lovely place to wander or to just sit and enjoy the fresh air and peacefulness.

    The cemetery is adjacent to the Pyramid of Cestius, a small-scale Egyptian-style pyramid built between 18 and 12BC. It is the monumental tomb of Caius Cestius, a Roman magistrate and member of a college of priests. It was later incorporated into the section of the Aurelian Walls that borders the cemetery. It was a very random sight to see amongst the usual Roman buildings and statues and tombstones.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Città metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Citta metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Rom, Rome, Roma

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