Sunday, 20 November 2011

MSC Melody Cruise

My Trip 2010 Part 3

29 November 2010

As I had decided to do the Hop on Hop off bus tour for the day - started out pretty early. Found a most delightful kiosk at Termini Station with the most awesome pastries and coffee. My main goal was to get to the Vatican. So caught the bus and off I went.

The route would take me past many of the places I had seen the day before - taking pics from a moving bus - a bit awkward. But got the hang of it. It was a perfect morning blue skies with a bit of cloud, but rain forecast for later in the afternoon.

Took some good pics of the Colosseo bathed in the first rays of the morning sunshine.
Its amazing how different it looked compared to the day before. Everything looked so clean and fresh in the sunlight.

Passed on and could not wait to get to the Vatican - would later retrace my steps to Monumento a Vittorio Emanuele 2 later in the day.

St Peter's Basilica  - what an amazing sight. Words cannot describe it - so I just took one pic after another. Piazza San Pietro is breathtaking too - my idea was not compete with all the tourists going to the museums, but to enjoy openness and the architecture of the buildings that surrounded me.

If this was the outside of the Basilica what was I expecting to see inside. Here are the pics you decide - I was speechless.

There is just so much to see - it boggles the brain somewhat.

Well took most of the morning walking around & around & around. I pretty exhausted but you just cant stop - I reckon if I went back I would probably find a whole lot of pic opportunities that I missed.

 This pic above is the famous Pieta - Mary holding her son Jesus's body.

What an amazing experience. On my way out had to take a pic of the famous Swiss Guards.

From the Vatican I walked down the Via della Conciliazione and came to the Castel Sant Angelo - For hundreds of years this fortress guarded the Vatican.

It is situated on the banks of the Fiume Tevere.

Had a break for a quick snack (purchased from my friendly vendor around the corner from my hotel) and hopped back on the bus. Now to find what the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish steps. Which I did with no going backwards and forwards as I did the day before. The Fontana di Trevi is the most beautiful piece of art I had ever seen. Amazing.

They say if you throw a coin into the fountain you will return to Rome - not being the superstitious person that I am - I did not throw that coin - I wonder. Sometimes pictures cannot capture the sounds and ambiance of what you see - all I can say is was an experience of a life time and was enjoying every minute of it  - even though I was on my own. A little way further down Via del Corso and a turn to my left down Via Condotti and there was the Spanish steps.

I am not sure what I was expecting - but I was pretty disappointed  - what was this about - to be honest did not tickle my fancy at all - did not hang around to long - found it pretty boring - compared to what I had just seen earlier in the day - so off I went again. On almost every street corner I found Chestnuts being roasted on open braziers - not one to shy away from trying something new - bought a few - I want some more.

Headed back towards the Emanuel 2 monument to get my bus. I still needed to found out about my train to Genoa the following morning and did not want leave it too late - like to get all my ducks in a row so to speak.

I had no idea that there would be so much to see in Rome - two and half days were just not enough time - I have to go back one day. Next to the Emanuel monument is church with a very unassuming facade  - but one you go inside - well here are the pics.

The view from up there is awesome.

Inside the church.

Next door to the Ara Coeli is the Campidoglio - as I said earlier there is just so much to see.

Adjacent to all this are the ancient ruins of Rome.

So after a wonderful day experiencing Rome it was back on the bus and back to my hotel. Had to be up early to to get my train to Genoa - thank goodness I made inquiries regarding my train trip as I would probably still be sitting at Termini waiting for my train - as my destination was Brignole train station I had to get the train via Liverno.

Well that's my next adventure - Part 4 coming soon


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