Exploring the Eternal City
From the Roman Forum to the Vatican City, a fascinating journey through the historic center of Rome.
A tour of the Eternal City might easily begin with a visit to one of the symbols of Italy's capital city, the Coliseum.
Also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre, this impressive structure was built in the 1st century A.D, by the emperors of the Flavia dynasty.
Imperial Forum and Piazza Venezia
A few meters away, on the Colle Oppio, lies the Domus Aurea, residence of the Emperor Nero and, next to the Coliseum, the Arch of Constantine, gateway which leads to the Imperial Forum, heart of ancient Rome.
From here we proceed to Piazza Venezia, an impressive square lying at the feet of the Vittoriano, this latter a late 19th century monument built in honor of Victor Emmanuel II, first king of Italy.
Those who decide to climb up to the top of this enormous white marble monument are rewarded by a magnificent view of both the Forum and the historic center of Rome from its summit.
Piazza Navona, the Pantheon and the Trevi fountain
From Piazza Venezia, Via del Corso commences, the road which skirts the historic centre of Rome. The next part of our visit starts in Piazza Navona, square dominated by Bernini's fountain of the Four Rivers.
From here, just a few steps and we reach the Pantheon: a spectacular Roman temple which, since the 7th century, has been used as Catholic Church.
We make a detour to see the Trevi Fountain, artwork so unique that it merits two visits: the first by day and the second by night
Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo
Piazza di Spagna is home to the Spanish Steps - an immense flight of steps leading up to the Trinità dei Monti Church.
From Piazza di Spagna we enter Via Condotti, arguably Rome's most glamorous shopping street, lined with exclusive boutiques show-casing the latest designer fashions and accessories.
Once again on Via del Corso, or, should you prefer, on the elegant Via Babuino, which runs parallel to it, we come to the Piazza del Popolo with its twin churches and the Church of Santa Maria del Popolo.
Piazza del Popolo is dominated by the Pincio, terrace from where a stunning view extending as far as the great dome of St Peter's can be admired
An entire day is needed to visit the Vatican City. Via the colonnade designed by the architect Gian Lorenzo Bernini, the faithful and tourists alike gain access to the "the greatest of all churches of Christendom".
Once inside St Peter's Basilica, visitors observe in respectful silence the hundreds of art works which adorn the interiors.
Bramante, Raphael, Michelangelo, Bernini: only the greatest renaissance artists were called upon to decorate this, the world's largest ever house of Christian worship
Our visit of the Holy See proceeds with a tour of the Vatican Museums, an immense collection of works which span the centuries. From here visitors access the Sistine Chapel, home to a series of awe inspiring frescoes, including Michelangelo's "Last Judgement".
Castel Sant' Angelo and Trastevere
Exiting the Vatican and proceeding along the Via della Conciliazione we soon come to the banks of the Tiber River. This is the most romantic part of our visit, especially so when made in the evening.
Castel Sant'Angelo, with its ornate bridge laden with statues, provides an exceptional backdrop for a photo
Once in Piazza Trilussa, it's the moment to delve in to Trastevere, Rome's most colorful district. A proliferation of bars and restaurants entice visitors with their gastronomic delights, although prior to weakening to temptation, it's well worth making a visit to the Piazza di Santa Maria in Trastevere with its Paleochristian church filled with splendid mosaics.
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