Sunday, December 6, 2009

All roads lead to Rome - Day 2 cont.

This next group of pictures is from our trip to Vatican City. There are so many because I had a really hard time trying to edit pictures out. Although there are no pictures of it (not allowed), we did see the Sistine Chapel. Which was mind blowing! No pictures you have ever seen do it justice, it's just amazing to see it in person!
Here are the boys in the subway on our way to Vatican City. I think this picture shows how exhausted we were. At this point, we still hadn't stopped for lunch so we had been on our feet for about 5 hours. We finally were able to get a bite to eat at the Vatican Museum and I'm happy to report that the Cola Wars have been settled, the Pope prefers Pepsi!

This is my first glimpse at the Vatican wall.

This is inside the Vatican Museum. I didn't have time to take pictures of the entrance because we had to go through security that TSA would be proud of. This statue again shows the influence the Egyptians had on this area of Europe.

I thought this was pretty interesting and a bit gross. This was in a courtyard that was full of depictions of war.

Can you believe that this was hand-carved thousands of years ago? Just mind boggling!

I liked him, not sure who he was, but he seemed to have a kind face.

Even the floors in the Vatican Museum are beautiful!

And this is on the ceiling! It was pretty hard to get a clear picture because flash wasn't allowed, but the colors were just so vibrant!

Just gorgeous! We were there at the perfect time of day to catch the sun shinning through this stained glass window.

And the staircase!

This fountain was completed by Bernini in 1675, who also is responsible for St. Peters Basilica and Piazza San Pietro (St Peters Square).

Piazza San Pietro

Billy is happy that we've arrived!

Bobby and I in front of Bernini's fountain. It was about 95 degrees out and the spray from the fountain felt so amazing!

St. Peter's Basilica. The dress code it pretty strict getting into the basilica. Knees and shoulders must be covered so we were tugging at our shorts/skirt in order to be able to get in.
The big screen in front of the basilica is for Sunday Mass. St. Peter's Square fills with people trying to get a look at the Pope.

This was on the way to the The Vatican Necropolis - Scavi which is where the tombs of the Popes are. Obviously pictures weren't allowed in there. We got to see the resting place of Pope John Paul II. There were a few mourners in front of it so we didn't spend much time there. It was unreal to see.

This is inside St. Peter's Basilica there was a small mass going on.

The is the Dome of St. Peter's Basilica done by Michelangelo and is the center of the enormous Greek Cross that is the form of the basilica.

St. Peter's Tomb is directly under the altar of the basilica

The Swiss Guard wear silly uniforms that look more like court jesters than military guards.

I thought this was a cool picture of St. Peter's Basilica with the sun shinning behind it.

Friday, November 27, 2009

All roads lead to Rome - Day 2

We wanted to get an early start because this was our last full day in Rome and we had a lot to see. Jayme and Bobby weren't completely awake when we left the hotel.We started out by getting cappuccinos next to the Trevi Fountain, it has a completely different feel in the light of the day.

We then starting walking toward the Roman Forum and the Colosseum along these ancient streets I couldn't help but take a few pictures.

This was a private home I believe and this picture doesn't do it justice!

These are some ruins that were in the process of being restored.

I just couldn't wipe the smile off my face. It was so incredible to be at these ancient sites!

These "Roman Gladiators" were all over Rome and Billy decided to get his picture with one of them. After about 10 minutes they got pretty annoying. It reminded me of being in Mexico had have the little kids come up to you, "Chiclet, Chiclet!"

This was part of the Roman capital buildings. The architecture was just amazing. We were able to walk up the steps and have a closer look. I really wanted to see that horse statue up close.

And here it is, I wish this picture showed the immense size of it, just amazing!

I wanted to get a picture of the hieroglyphs, it seemed to be a depiction of war. It was interesting how influenced Rome is by Egypt. We found hieroglyphs almost everywhere in Rome.

The roads were so charming, but after 8 hours of walking on them, they had lost their charm for me. Still, I had to take a picture.

This was at Circus Maximus which is where they did chariot races as well as where Ben Hur was filmed. Billy did an excellent reading out of my travel book that we made sure to catch on video. I'll have to post it another time.

The size of Circus Maximus was about 3 football fields!

This is right outside the Colosseum, it was unreal to see it in person!

After the Colosseum we headed to the Roman Forum, which is the center of Ancient Rome. The history is pretty interesting so I took this from Wikipedia to explain the importance of it: The oldest (7th century BC) and most important structures of the ancient city are located in the forum, including its ancient former royal residency, and the surrounding complex of the Vestal virgins, (kind of like nuns). The Old Republic had its formal Comitium (place of assembly) there where the senate, as well as Republican government began. The forum served as a city square and central hub where the people of Rome gathered for justice, and faith. The forum was also the economic hub of the city and considered to be the center of the Republic and Empire. The Forum is also where Julius Caesar was assassinated by 21 senators led by Marcus Junius Brutus.

This day is not over but this post is. Next I will post pictures from the Vatican, Vatican Museum and St. Peter's Square and Basilica.