At the beginning of June 2019, Jeppe and I managed to do a 5-day trip to the eternal city – Rome including a one day trip to Pompei, an ancient Roman trading city that was destroyed by a volcano and to the breathtaking Positano, on the Amalfi Coast.
What a great privilege to witness the largest amphitheater that was ever built in history and to think about the gladiators, Caesers and Christian persecution…Not to miss the fact of the rounded arch architecture. Though it looks simple it was a clever engineering move by the Romans, so it scales to be that big!!
Killing about 2000 men and 9000 animals just to celebrate the 100-day grand opening…Really!!
Palatine hill, and the Roman forum
Now looking around is the Palatine Hill, the temple of Venus and Rome, the arch of Constantine and the tomb of Julius Caeser. (You too, Brutus!!!) Yes, Constantine – Because of him By 400 A.D., one was not killed for being a Christian. Before that time, it was the other way around. In Rome, we discovered the love for ruins… ♥♥
Paid a visit to this prison that most people don’t know about(hence, no crowd) – an ancient Roman prison(was more like a dungeon)where Apostle Peter and Paul were both incarcerated here prior to their crucifixion.
Vatican city – St.Peters basilica, Sistine chapel
I loved St.Peters basilica and also had some goosebumps moments! Standing in front of the tomb of Apostle Peter aka the first pope and thinking about the bible verse that says “you are Peter and on this rock, I will build my church”-Mathew 16:18. Literally, the church is built on his tomb!! Well, this is in a literal context. But how amazing is that even in a literal context we serve a God who is true to His words!
To experience Sistine chapel – the official residence of the pope and the amazing masterpiece of Michelangelo depicting the Christian history from creation to the last judgment. Again, It’s so worth all the neck pain and cramps looking at the ceiling for so long. Yes to see, the famous art- the hand of God reaching out to mankind. 🙂
Trevi fountain, Pantheon, and the Spanish steps
We managed to visit Trevi fountain without throwing a coin into it 😉 We also climbed the Spanish Steps, and stood under the dome of the Pantheon (Ancient Roman temple but now a church). Did not explore much but caught a glimpse of Castel Sant’Angelo from the outside.
Church of St. Agnes
The church is built on the tomb of St, Agnes (Yes!! that’s also my name 🙂 ). A young girl who was murdered just because she refused to give up her sexual purity! Sad but I am amazed by her bravery and standing for what she believes!! Admiring her, lighting a candle, I took a deep breath…
Crypt of Capuchins
We went here after my friend’s suggestion. The crypt that is made from the buried remains of 3,700 bodies believed to be Capuchin friars… That is 206×3.700 = 762.200. Yes, That’s a lot of bones.. so creepy but I should admit that it was a great art… Somehow, I managed to fall asleep that night! You are not allowed to take a picture but you can see one from here…
Italian Parliament in Rome and More Church scenes…
We walked through the Italian parliament and visited some more churches… Everywhere you turn you in Rome, You can see churches, squares, and beautiful buildings…
Fountains, Gardens, Narrow streets, and Squares………
Rome has beautiful fountains, narrow streets, and Plazas… So surprised, when we came across empty streets and stairs in the midst of the crowded city, …Yah! Picture time, poor husband boy 😀 Even before so many years, they had a running water system… Good for you, Romans!
Pompei and Positano
I am so glad we did a one day trip to Pompei, a rich ancient roman trading city that was destroyed in A.D.79 by a volcano. This is your best bet to see the ancient ruins in its best-preserved state. The decorations in their homes, brothels, plaster caster of native people who were the victim of the tragedy …it speaks the story loud 🙁
After Pompeii, we continued to Positano, the city on the Amalfi coast. The breathtaking views of the Mediterranean switching my brain from the tragedy to nature’s beauty at its best. It’s hard not to admire the city of Positano that is put together like lego blocks.
All those crazy bends that we need to travel was so worth it! Especially, when I got my favorite fried anchovies with a view to the Mediterranean and lego block city… Come on!! Look at my happy face 😀 Returned to our hotel in Rome, very tired but a big smile on our faces.
Be a Roman when in Rome… Let Gelato be your fuel for all the crazy walks. Now and then enjoy some pasta, risotto, pizza, lasagna, Italian fried rice balls (Arancini di Riso)… and much more 😀
Will we go again?
We love Rome for so many reasons – The rich ancient Roman history, the biblical sites, food, and the liveliness… So, Yes definitely but maybe during winter to beat the crowd!
Thanks to the internet and my friend, Marta for all the suggestions and warning us about the places where we need to buy skip-the-line tickets. It was all worth it! By the way, check out her travel blog. She travels a lot and puts up great information…
Next time, we will cover the other missed places – Circus Maximus, Altar of the fatherland, Paul’s tomb, Domus Aurea, inside of Castel Sant’Angelo and much more… Until then, we will hold these experiences close to our hearts.
Our travel timeline is as follows and I have also linked the sites that we used to book One-day trip and audio guides we used!
We stayed at the iQ Hotel that was approx 15 min walk from Colosseum. We highly recommend…
City Tax – It’s very important to take note that Rome has a city tax on all hotels which are charged and collected by your hotel. It’s between 4 – 7 euros per night depending on if its 3, 4 or 5-star hotel.
Day1- Trevi fountain -> Spanish steps -> Colonna, city of Rome -> Buy Gelato 🙂 -> Pantheon -> Piazza Navona (St. Agnes in Agony)-> glimpse of Castel Sant’Angelo
Day2- Vatican city – St.Peter’s Basilica, Vatican Museum & Sistine chapel – (Recommend booking skip-the-line tour)
Day3- Skip-the-line guided tour that covered – Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine hill. Mamertine Prison (need to buy your own ticket) -> Caught a glimpse of the Italian parliament
Day4- Trip to Pompei and Positano on the Amalfi coast (the package covered, transportation from Rome central station and back, guided tour in Pompei, In Positano, we were given about roughly 4 hours to enjoy…)
Day5- Museum, and Crypt of the Capuchin Friars -> Piazza del Popolo -> Villa Borghese 🙂
Dress code for some Christian sites – When you visit the Vatican – St.Peter’s and Sistine Chapel, the crypt of capuchins remember to wear clothes that cover your shoulders and knee.
Audio guide – we downloaded Rick Steves Audio Europe – Italy (Rome) from the google play store. Can’t recommend enough… Loved it!