Day 38… – Getting to Rome and – Being a tourist

As I sit here and watch the opening of the winter Olympics I just wonder what the heck Germany are wearing. Anyway back to what I am going to write.

My little diary of my adventure to Italy.

I am a person who likes to plan and set off early instead of being stranded. So I was glad to get to the airport extra early. I even had time to administer first aid on a lady who fainted. That was defiantly a different start to the holiday.

When I arrived I had no idea where to go, just that I needed the Leonardo Express. The main transport to the city, takes 30 mins it is easy to find, huge signs do state the destination of the train station. When you come out onto the station there are numerous ticket offices. It cost 14 euros which is better than a taxi as they will charge 40 euros to your hotel. One important thing to do when you have got your ticket, is to make sure you get it validated by sticking it in the machine on the platform. Otherwise they can charge you. As I arrived at 7 it was quite dark and I did not want to look like an easy tourist target, so I memorised the directions to the hotel and took my short walk with my head up looking like I knew my way. It was a good idea, there were a few people I stayed clear of, I found my hotel quite easily. That night I just settled in as the next day I was rising early.

As I planned a busy day ahead of me I woke at 7 and was down for breakfast at 7.30 and out the door for 8. It was very easy to find the Colosseum I ended up going in a different direction but still found my way to its steps. even though I got there at 8.15 and it did not open for another 15 mins a queue had already been forming. When the doors opened however as I had already pre-ordered my tickets and had them printed out I was taken down a different route straight through the gate. I started on the top floor, walking around the inside then the outside(inside the Colosseum) then went down stairs. What I do wish I did was get an audio guide, there was not many information boards, but the ones I found were interesting.

After the Colosseum you should walk up to Palatine Hill, so don’t walk into the Roman Forum, keep walking along the pavement until you get to the Palatine, use your ticket that you pre-ordered for the Colosseum to get into the gates. Turn left and go up the hill. When you are up there take every turning, nuck and crevis. There are wonders hiding in every corner. And if you start here you then wonder down into the Roman Forum which is a wonder of amazingly old buildings. Just take your time keep wandering around and get lost in the Forum there is plenty to miss if you don’t look.

Then make your way out up the steps at the back, keep going on up the steps and you get to Capitoline Hill and Museum with Marcus Aurelius owning the square. (although the real one is inside the Capitoline Museum). If you have a spare moment you can’t actually miss it walk down the steps that are the entrance to Capitoline Hill and turn right. You will see a magnificent white building called Vittoriano. Go through the gate and do not be afraid to walk up the steps, but don’t sit on them. Two guards stand next to a bowl of fire, this a monument to the missing soldiers of WWI. Go up the stairs onto the right and into the building, after looking around the first floor go upstairs and outside on top of the Vittoriano and take in the view or have a coffee. You can even take the lift even higher.

At this point I was soaking wet, it had rained all day and gave into buying an umbrella from one of the many men who were trapping every tourist that did not have one.

I then got lost! trying to make my way to the Pantheon but just asked an elderly man and it was quite simple, he said just keep walking straight, and I found it. When I went it was absolutely chucking it down, this made is more magical, as the rain poured through the hole in the dome and the sound was amazing. To be in a building that was rebuilt in 126 AD is just phawww!!!! Then take a little walk to Piazza Navona, it would be better on a day where the weather is better as the artist show off all their work and it is buzzing with atmosphere.

To finish my day off I took a visit to the Capitoline Museum, got myself an audio guide, strolled around at my own leisure enjoying the art.

If you want any info, do not be afraid to ask.







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