Metropolitan City of Rome

Anastasia Travelsia
Dec 22
Over 1.3 million visitors journey to the Eternal City and the Vatican each year in search of a spiritual experience. I was one of them and something magical happened during my visit.
Colosseum

Built by the Flavian Dynasty it was opened by Emperor Titus in 80 AD, and the building was known as the Flavian Amphitheatre. It was the largest in the Roman Empire.

The basement level of the Colosseum was excavated in the end of 20th century and opened to limited numbers of the public in the 2010 year. It was dark underground. You can only imagine how the gladiators felt, waiting for their fight.

The gladiators fought against other gladiators, and only specially trained men fought against animals. They were actually the Roman Empire’s superstars. In centuries BC they were slaves and prisoners, but in centuries BC they were professional athletes, trained at an elite gladiator school nearby to the Colosseum.

Roman forum

The Colosseum, the ancient amphitheater icon of Rome, surrounded by the archaeological site of the Roman Forum. This had been the heart of Ancient Rome, a bustling collection of temples, Senate buildings, and public spaces – the ‘downtown’ of the city, so to speak. One of the reasons the area is in ruins today is that during the Middle Ages, the Barberini papal family plundered the old city for its marble.

You can find there the archway where Marc Anthony gave his speech to the Senate after the murder of Julius Caesar.

Palatine

The Palatine Hill is some 40 meters high with views of the Roman Forum on one side, and the Circus Maximus on the other.

According to Roman mythology, the Palatine hill it's a place where Romulus and Remus were found by a wolf that didn't kill them. After which a shepherd Faustulus found the infants, and with his wife raised the children. Later Romulus chose this site to build the city of Rome.

Santa Maria Maggiore

Papal major basilica and the largest Catholic Marian church in Rome, Italy, from which size it receives the appellation "major". One of Rome's four patriarchal basilicas, this monumental 5th-century church stands on the summit of the Esquiline Hill, on the spot where snow is said to have miraculously fallen in the summer of AD 358.

The Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels and the Martyrs

It was constructed in the 16th century following an original design by Michelangelo Buonarroti. Later on, in the 18th century, a meridian sundial had been built in a church. The meridian clock remains working to this day. Each day the sun aligns perfectly with a hole in the basilica’s ceiling sending a ray of light that lands on the line at exactly noon.


The Four Fountains

The Four Fountains are four late renaissance fountains located at the intersection of Via delle Quattro Fontane and Via del Quirinale. The different figures are grouped in similar pairs: two bearded male figures: allegories of the Tiber and Arno rivers, facing two female figures represent Diana and Juno. The first two symbolize Rome and Florence, while those of Diana and Juno are a symbol of loyalty and courage, respectively.

Villa Borghese gardens

A great place to chill out, it has plenty to see also including the Borghese Gallery. Villa Borghese is a landscape garden in the naturalistic English manner in Rome, containing a number of buildings, museums (see Galleria Borghese) and attractions. It is the third largest public park in Rome. You could do the walk by bike, there is a hire station at the start of the walk.

The Trevi Fountain

It's the largest Baroque fountain in Rome and one of the most famous fountains in the world.

After 17 months of restoration and an expenditure of 2.2 million €, the Trevi Fountain was reopened to the public in November of 2015. The masterpiece located in the heart of the city center built by Nicola Salvi between the 1732 and 1762.

Vittoriano

You can't ignore the Vittoriano, the massive building of white marble that towers over Piazza Venezia. The monument, the largest in Rome, was controversial since its construction destroyed a large area of the Capitoline Hill with a Medieval neighborhood for its sake.

Capitol and Piazza del Campidoglio

The Capitol is the smallest of the Seven Hills of Rome. Piazza del Campidoglio is one of Rome's most beautiful squares, designed in the sixteenth century by Michelangelo. Today the hill still symbolizes the heart of Rome and it is the perfect starting point for a visit to the Eternal City.

Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls

The Papal Basilica of St. Paul outside the Walls, commonly known as St. Paul's outside the Walls, is one of Rome's four ancient, Papal, major basilicas. Built in the 4th century, this massive Roman church has undergone centuries of change and expansion, and along the way has become home to a series of pope pictures that are said to herald the end of the world should they be completed.

Museums of the Vatican

The Vatican Museums are Christian and art museums located within the city boundaries of the Vatican City. It contains masterpieces of painting, sculpture and other works of art collected by the popes through the centuries. The Museums include several monumental works of art, such as the Sistine Chapel, the Chapel of Beato Angelico, the Raphael Rooms and Loggia and the Borgia Apartment.

The Sistine Chapel

According to some scholars, the dimensions of the Sistine Chapel's hall are 40.23 meters in length, 13.40 meters in width and 20.70 meters in height and are copied from Solomon’s great temple in Jerusalem, which was destroyed by the Romans in 70 A.D.

Castel Sant'Angelo

It was built in 123 AD by Emperor Hadrian as a monumental tomb for himself and his family. The building was later used by the popes as a fortress and castle and is now a museum. The Castle was once the tallest building in Rome.

Piazza Navona

It is arguably its most beautiful baroque square. Don't miss visiting this gorgeous plaza and its breathtaking Bernini fountain. It is built on the site of the Stadium of Domitian, built in the 1st century AD.The ancient Romans went there to watch the agones ("games"), and hence it was known as "Circus Agonalis" ("competition arena").

Pantheon

Even today, almost 2000 years after its construction, the breathtaking pantheon is a remarkable building to see.

The word Pantheon is a Greek adjective meaning “honor all Gods”. In fact the pantheon was first built as a temple to all gods.

The 16 massive Corinthian columns supporting the portico weigh 60 tons each. They are 39 feet (11.8 m) tall, five feet (1.5 m) in diameter and brought all the way from Egypt.

It’s still a church today, and you can go to Mass here on Sundays.

Trastevere

A stroll around Trastevere, a formerly working-class district with a heady nightlife, will take you away from the crowds to the hidden corners of Rome. It's famous for its characterful, narrow cobbled streets lined with ancient houses. One of the best parts of staying in Trastevere is the amazing array of food choices that one has in this neighborhood. The area is filled with pizzeria, cafès and incredible mom and pop trattorie.