Day 10 – Nov 5. Rome. Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palantine Hill
Our first full day in Rome and we repurchased tickets for an Underground Tour of the Colosseum, which takes you into the lower levels (dungeons) which have only recently been opened to public (By tour only) and also up to the third level, again only available on a pre booked tour.
It wasn’t that much more than the regular entry price for the Colosseum(+Forum/Palantine Hill) and we booked directly through the Colosseum rather than with a 3rd party which charges more. It was great to get more info on the history of the Colosseum in general as well, and also to watch the general publics faces as we were allowed into locked off areas 😉
We had gotten up early expecting the walk from our hotel to be a bit longer, but really it was only 15-20 minutes or so!
The Colosseum was AMAZING, incredible that it existed, ickyill exists and also the level of restoration that can be achieved! So clever.
After the Colosseum we went to Palantine Hill and the Forum, but nothing could compare to what we had previously just seen!
On our walk back towards our hotel we stopped for a closer look at the Monumento Nazionale a Vittorio Emanuele II
We continued on our long walking day to the Pantheon, again impressive both inside and out!
From the Pantheon we then went to the famous Trevi Fountain, crowded with tourists, but beautiful nonetheless. We also witnessed a marriage proposal, as well as getting hassled every 2 seconds by men with instant cameras offering to “take our photo” i.e.. scam money from us. Not a fan.
Our day ended at the Piazza Navona,as the sun set on its beautiful sculptures..
Day 11 – Nov 6 ROME . Vatican City and Vatican Museums
Early that morning after breakfast we took a walk from our hotel (Hotel Smeraldo) to Vatican City. It didn’t take us nearly as long as we thought it would! Having pre-purchased tickets we were able to skip the already long line to the Museum (highly recommend doing this!)
The Vatican Museums were incredible. SO much art, and what I found the most beautiful is that whenever you looked up you were met with the most amazing detailed paintings. The sculptures were also impressive and I got to see a REAL LIFE Dali painting. Very happy. At the end of the walk through the endless rooms of art was the Sistine Chapel, which is beautiful but I found the rest of the painted rooms just as amazing. Plus it was too crowded for my liking.
After the Museums, we opted not to go into St Peter’s Basilica due to the massive line, but caught the train and went to Piazza Del Popolo, and walked through the Villa Borghese gardens and made our way to the Spanish Steps.
We then caught the train to Circo Massimo – the ancient chariot racing stadium. From here we went up to Aventine Hill to try and find the Magic Keyhole … which we didn’t 🙁 It was still a lovely view.
We continued on to Tiber Island and headed over to Trastevere. Such a cute area, I’d love to stay around there next time!
Our last day in Rome was spent relaxing, before we headed off a bit earlier than we’d planned to catch the train to Venice .