We didn’t arrive in Rome until the late afternoon. So we consulted our favorite guidebook and planned to do a walking tour designed for nighttime, of some famous Roman landmarks.
|View of the Opera house from our room.|
We started at the Campo di Fiori, where we ate dinner. We ate off the main piazza, most of the travel books advise you to eat meals on side streets rather than on the piazzas because they say the food is much better quality for the money. Near the campo is the Pompei Theater which is actually the site of Julius Caesar’s murder. We then walked to Piazza Navona, much bigger and more beautiful than the Campo di Fiori. It has three fountains, the biggest and most beautiful being the Four Rivers Fountain by Bernini. If you’ve seen Angels & Demons, you’ve seen this fountain. In the center of the fountain is an Egyptian obelisk. There are many obelisks around Rome that were brought back as trophies from Egypt in ancient times.
Along with the fountains there is music, and artists selling heaps of artwork. From there we walked over to the Pantheon. It was really breathtaking, the pictures can’t do it justice. Those columns are 40 foot solid granite pieces from Egypt. You can also see another obelisk on the left of the picture.
|Another obelisk from around Rome, if you look closely you can see some heiroglyphs.|
After a brief detour for some gelato, we made our way to another awe-inspiring site, the Trevi Fountain. Now even though it looks ancient, this was actually built in the 1700’s. It was built to celebrate the reopening of the ancient aqueduct that supplies its water.
This walking tour confirmed for us that we really need a tripod for night pictures. We were struggling to get good pictures this night. Last stop on the tour was the Spanish Steps. All over Rome are guys selling laser pointers, and these fly up/light up toys. If you see these it means you are getting close to something cool, because they all hang out by the major tourist sites. I recommend you do not engage them unless you’re serious about buying a light up toy, because they will chase you down to try to convince you to buy one.
|View from the top looking down.|
Already by the first night we were blown away. You just don’t see cities that have such gorgeous and grand monuments and fountains around every corner. And for Rome being such a big city, it is actually surprisingly walkable. A great start to our time in Rome!