Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Europe Trip 2015 (pt. 7 Rome)

06/05/2015 - 06/09/2015

Rome, the eternal city is truly amazing! Our AirBnb host was over the top hospitable, which was very awesome. He insisted on picking us up from the train station and driving us to the apartment we were staying at. He showed us surrounding grocery stores, train stations, and restaurants. Our apartment was so supposed to have a washer, but our host explained that a previous guest had broken the washer. We had used up all our clothes at this point. We found a local laundry place that washed, dried, and folded all our clothes for only 20 euros. It wasn't our first choice, but we appreciated having clean clothes.

Up until this point, we had been staying in very touristy spots. Many traditional restaurants, businesses, and grocery stores close around 2pm and open back at 7pm. We were outside of the touristy areas and found that most of surrounding stores were closed. We walked up the street until we found a grocery store that was open so we bought groceries and made food back at the house. I had never been so hungry in all of my life.

Rome has some amazing sights. The best way to describe our experience is through photos. First we visited the Roman forum. This is where a lot of ancient roman history took place. This is where Brutus murdered Ceasar. This was the center of civilization.
 This is the Roman forum is.
 This is a view of Palpatine Hill. The remains of the huge royal palace.
 The ruins are very well preserved! It's amazing.

Next we visited the Colosseum. It was amazing to see another iconic figure of Italy. It was so surreal. We purchased our tickets online, for which we were very grateful. The line was incredibly large to buy tickets. Online tix are the way to go!

 Inside the Colosseum. There were so many people, that it was hard to peer over the edge and get a good photo.
Here's the Arch of Constantine, it was erected in honor of Rome accepting Christianity. The world today would be very different today if this hadn't taken place.

We've admired this monument many times. It serves as a government building, and a monument to the unknown soldier. It was erected by the fascist dictator Mussolini. They say he built this monument and created a view to see the Colosseum from the top to impress his buddy Adolf Hitler. The view was awesome, and it was worth it.
The view from outside.
Beautiful statues adorn the top.
Here's the view of the Colosseum.
Here it is, lit up at night.

The next day we visited Vatican City. It was pretty amazing. We bought our tickets online for the Vatican Museums. It was totally worth it. We also visited St. Peter's Basilica. It was massive and huge! The view from the top of the dome is one of the most beautiful views in the planet. I strongly advise it!
 Summer in the square outside.

There was a lot of awesome Egyptian and Greek artifacts. Mummies.

Evidence of the "Great Castration" of the Vatican. I

Cool Egyptian Hieroglyph
Sistine Chapel. It quite surreal seeing such famous and import works of art. We technically weren't allowed to take photos, but my camera happened to take this one...
Pope's carriage

Famous spiral staircase of the Vatican.

Climbing St. Peter's dome.
The view inside the dome is breathtaking!
The view from the top was amazing! I've never seen anything so beautiful. We were up so high.
Inside St. Peter's, it's immense!
 Down in the square.

Not many modern Christian churches believe in keys or authority. Only Latter Day Saints and Catholics that I know of.

Another awesome mural.

There were a few more awesome sights that we saw, such as Castello Saint Angelo, Piazza Navonna, the overcrowded Spanish Steps, and the Pantheon. 
Castello Saint Angelo

Bridge leading to Saint Angelo.

Piazza Navonna. Here is where the water priest died in Dan Brown's Angels and Demons.

The famous Spanish Steps weren't overly impressive when we were there. They were completely covered with people, and the church on top was covered with a cardboard cover.

The Spanish Steps are right next to the Spanish Embassy to the Vatican. It was good to see the Spanish Flag waving.

The Pantheon, the source of inspiration for many domes worldwide.

 Rome was amazing! We were very sad to leave. Trevi Fountain was closed and we were unable to toss a coin in the water... But, that doesn't mean that we won't go back! Our host picked up and dropped us off at the train station. We went to the Da Vinci Airport and left to go meet up with my family in the Paris Airport. I'll write more later about souvenirs we purchased, how we ate gelato everyday, the weather, etc...

We love Rome!

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