My favorite spots were the Coloseum, the Roman Forum, and the Catacombs. The Catacombs are a cemetery built underground as the land above was needed for the living. The catacombs are 100 ft deep, 10 miles long, and 4 levels. They even created maps back them so family members could visit their loved ones graves underground.
I had a traditional Roman meal which was 5 courses and yes I mean 5! We even received roses. :) I also threw coins in the Trevi fountain. You can throw 3 coins, the first is a wish that you will come back to Rome, the second is a personal wish and the third is optional and is that you will meet a significant other and get married or you will get a divorce. Guess how many coins I threw? Sorry but I'm not going to tell you!
Following Rome we went on to Pompeii where we visited the excavated city that was demolished in 79AD due to a volcanic eruption that decimated the city while preserving everything with it's 25ft. of volcanic ash. We saw temples, wine shops, chariot tracks, roads, the theater, houses, colorful frescos on the walls, mosaic floors, and preserved bodies. It's amazing to realize that people thought and developed the same way as us today. They even had a "red light district" represented by symbols of penises carved in the walls. There was even a penis carved into the road and we were told it brings good luck if you step on it. So of course I stepped in it! Im racking in the good luck.
In Pompeii I also witnessed the gypsies at work. They tend to get people's attention and crowds gather while other gypsies are around and steal/pick pocket during this time.
We then move on to Sorrento a small 20,000 person seaside city that is known for it's lemons and everything made with lemons. We had a 5 course Italian meal last night with free flowing drinks. Our group got pretty rowdy. Man Aussie's and New Zealanders know how to drink!
Then today we spent the day in Capri. It was dissappointing in that it was our first bad weather day in what was suppose to be the warmest place. Capri is an Island with a city built on the side cliffs. It's known for its famous blue grotto. We became familiar with the buses and the tram. The roads were big enough for one vehicle but they fit two and on one side you didn't want to look down- we were about
2 ft from going off the cliff. Even the local old ladies were doing the sign of the cross on the bends in the road! It was quite fun. Well I'm off to dinner and then sightseeing. The shops here close at noon and reopen at 5pm until late late. Tomorrow is an early day which will bring us to Florence.
The Mighty Colosseum.
From this picture you can see the all of the tunnels were gladiators, slaves, and animals were kept until the games started. At the far end you can see a restoration of the wood floor that was built over the tunnels that the performance would be on.
Did you know that most of these old historic buildings did not fall down due to weather over the years (some of it is because of that) but the Pope would take the marble and materials off of these buildings and use them to build glorious churches. hmmmm....think of that that next time you are in one of the amazing beautiful churches in Europe.
These were just laying around the Forum and people would be sitting on them. I just couldn't do that. Seemed sacrilegious or something.
My feet standing on stone roads built over 2,000 years ago.
My only picture of the Catacombe because you couldn't take pictures inside.
Pompeii- can you see what I'm standing on?
Pompeii- roads built before 79AD. See the chariot tracks and the large stones in the road at intersections were for pedestrians to cross the roads on.
The preserved body of a 13-14 year old Roman girl who was pregnant. Preserved by the volcanic ash which hardens into like a cement over the body.
Check out the size of these lemons! Southern Italy is known for it's large lemons and anything made with lemons. Lemon cake, lemonade, lemon liquor, lemon gelato and so on.
Sorrento, the city by the Sea.
Part of my 5 course Italian meal. Cheese pizza with basil.
Two different kinds of pasta.