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Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain

What are the main things you want to see when you visit Rome? The Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, Vatican, Coliseum to name just a few. Yep, me too, so before we left, I mapped out a walking tour to ensure we saw all of this and more. We left our hotel and walked about 20 mins to the Spanish Steps only to be disappointed because 1) the fountain at the bottom was partially under restoration and 2) we were completely underwhelmed. When you look online, photographers do a fabulous job of making things look bigger than they actually are and I guess the gorgeous flowers that adorn the sides of the steps in most images are only there on specific occasions. Oh well, not much we can do about this except move on….to the beautiful Trevi Fountain, oh yeah!

Oh no! I heard a thud as both of our hearts sank in unison. Ugly scaffolding completely surrounded the Trevi Fountain and I cannot explain how disappointed we were but we vowed not to let it spoil our trip because we have so much more to see. The photo to the left is actually a shot of the poster on the barricade, not exactly what I was hoping for. I was also looking forward to tossing a coin or two into the Trevi. Legend dictates that 1 coin will ensure your return to Rome, 2 coins and you will fall in love with a Roman. Well, I guess I won’t be coming back or falling in love…jeesh!

This has been a great lesson for me. For any future trip I take, I will be checking beforehand to see what kind of restoration is taking place to avoid any similar surprises!

Next stop is Largo Di Torre Argentina – a sanctuary for stray cats and a pretty cool one at that. Set among the ruins of four temples, it’s believed that Julius Caesar was assassinated here. Look carefully and with luck, you’ll see a few of the 200 or so cats among the ruins, although most of the ones we saw were on the steps sunning themselves after a feeding by local ladies.

Temple of Hadrian – columns along one surviving side of this structure are all that can be seen now.

Piazza Navona – once the location of the Domitian Stadium and now home to the Fountain of Four Rivers and Neptune’s Fountain. Also an opportunity to fill our water bottles during the gorgeously hot 38 degrees celcius.

Pantheon – housed in the Piazza della Rotonda is the Pantheon, a Roman temple dedicated to Roman gods. Absolutely stunning inside, unfortunately I don’t have the photos to show it so you’ll have to go and check it out for yourself. Outside is the Fontana del Pantheon (yes, another fountain!) which we truly appreciated. Rome’s water seems to be pure, none of the after-taste that we experience at home and it’s super cold. Don’t continually spend 1 or 2 Euros on water bottles, simply bring your own and fill up as you go. You won’t run out, there are about 2,000 fountains in the city!

Vittorio Emanuelle Monument or Altare della Patria – a very imposing white marble ‘wedding cake’ style building completed in 1925 in honour of the first King of Italy. We headed straight for the elevator to the roof and marvelled at the 360 degree view of Rome. If you could simultaneously make your right eye see what’s on the right and your left eye see what’s on the left, you would be experiencing an oxymoron, of sorts, with a view of both modern and ancient Rome. The streets below and afar are dotted with the very distinctive shape of umbrella pines or, as I like to refer to them, long-legged bonsai trees.

From here we head down Via Dei Fori Imperiali and are flanked by the ruins of the Roman Forum on the right and the Forum of Augustus Caesar on the left. Before I arrived here, I pictured the ruins all being in one place (kinda silly now that I think about it) and thought that while viewing them, I would be totally transported back to that era and I was for a while as I imagined how the people were dressed, and how they worked, etc. But then you look further around or try to take a photo and that’s when you spy the things that look so out of place, the modern day conveniences such as traffic lights, garbage cans and signs. It’s still incredible though and I encourage you to visit. The history of this city is quite something to behold.

Foro di Augusto

Foro di Augusto

 

 

 

 

 

Roman Forum

Roman Forum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Hey Caesar, which way to the Coliseum?

That way? Are you sure?

I thought it was this way!”

"That way? No, I think it's this way"

“That way? No, I think it’s this way”

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Posted September 3, 2014 by Jaclyn in Architecture, Holidays, Italy, Travel

Tagged with , , , , , , , ,

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