I am fortunate enough to have a host family that let me go to Rome for 4 days during the week with my Canadian friend who also happens to be an Au Pair. What I really enjoyed about Rome was that it was like stepping into an ancient time capsule.
We pre booked our tickets online the day we decided to go to the Colosseum and it was a smart idea because we skipped a HUGE line probably saving us about an hour wait time. Stepping inside you can almost feel the energy of the gladiators and the roaring crowds.
Inside the Colosseum
Looking at the ruins in the Roman Forum you can envision how the ancient city used to look. We didn't go on the grounds of the Roman Forum but there are great views of it from above on the walk to the Colosseum.
The Roman Forum
Palazza Venizia is the prettiest Palazza I have seen in Italy so far. It is in a great location close to all the main attractions, such as the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. It has great architecture and the Italian flags are a great showcase of Italian Pride.
When we saw the Trevi Fountain I expected it to be bigger especially after seeing the Gaudi Fountain in Spain but it was still a great attraction to see. Coins are constantly being thrown into the fountain using the right hand over the left shoulder. About 3000 Euros are thrown into the fountain each day and has been used to subsidize a supermarket for Rome's needy. It is illegal to steal coins from the fountain but there are still regular attempts.
The Trevi Fountain
The day we went to the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel we also pre-booked our tickets. Again we skipped another ridiculously long line just to get inside and buy tickets. The Vatican Museums are filled with tons of sculptures, paintings, beautifully painted ceilings and ancient mosaics on the floors.
Inside a part of the Vatican Museum
One of the ceilings in the Vatican Museum
A sculpture in the Vatican Museum
The Sistine Chapel is home to Michelangelo's famously painted ceilings particularly "The Creation of Adam". If you have ever been to the Sistine Chapel you will know that you are not allowed to take any photos or videos and security is constantly on the microphone repetitively asking for "silence" or "silenzio". Other than the large crowds and the constant chatter it is an amazing piece of artwork.
The Pantheon looks more like a court house from the outside than a church but its something in Rome that you have to see for its a popular tourist destination. Surprisingly it is free to enter and way smaller than the other churches I have seen like the Duomo's in Milan and Florence.
The Ceiling of the Pantheon
Inside The Pantheon
The Baths of Caracalla were a less known tourist attraction and it was nice to get away from the large crowds of tourists. The Baths of Caracalla are another ruins site that used to be an old public bath house and a park. The ceiling and a lot of the walls and decorations have been knocked down but it was fun to read the information cards and see what the Baths looked liked back then.
A part of the Baths of Caracalla
The last day we actually spent in Ostia since our second Couch Surfing host lived there. From our host's house we had a gorgeous view of the sea and we were inspired to spend our last day relaxing on the beach.
The view from our Couch Surfing Host's place