Sights of Rome

From walking around the city, we had seen this huge monument that we had to go check out.  It sticks out because it is so massive and it’s bright white (and it’s apparently not a favorite of the locals).  Rome is so interesting because it’s a regular modern city, but then you walk around the corner and there’s some stunning piece of art/architecture/history.  This monument is for Vittorio Emmanuele II, the first king of a unified Italy in the 1860’s.  It also houses a museum about Italian military history.

Vittorio Emmanuele II monument, also nicknamed “the wedding cake.”

View from the top.
Taking a little break in the shade, it was REALLY hot.

After exploring this monument, we went to see another icon of Rome-the Pantheon.  We had seen the outside at night already, but wanted to see the inside of it.  This building was and still is used as a church.  It was built in ancient times, and the dome was studied by Brunelleschi when he was designing the duomo in Florence.  It’s made of concrete, and at the base is some 20 ft. thick, but thins out as it climbs up to only about 5 ft. thick.

These columns were shipped from Egypt, and are solid 40 ft. pieces of granite.

When you walk in, the view of the domed ceiling is breathtaking.  The giant oculus in the middle shines light into the entire building.

Around the Pantheon are statues of saints.  There are also some tombs of some notable Italians.  The artist Raphael is buried here as is Vittorio Emmanuele II (the man for whom the previous monument was built).

Raphael’s tomb.
Tomb of Vittorio Emmanuele II.

After all the walking around in the heat, and the sightseeing we needed a little something to cool us down and pick us up.  There is an old coffee place around the corner from the Pantheon, Tazza d’Oro,  that is supposed to be a favorite among Romans.  We got the treat they’re known for a caffe granita con panna-basically a coffee slushy with whipped cream.  It was AMAZING!  So delicious, if you go to Rome you have to get one of these!  We didn’t take pictures because we were too busy scarfing them down, but this is basically what it looked  like:

Source

Another successful day in Rome, we had one more day left before it was onto a new city!