After a 22 hour ferry journey from Barcelona we arrived at Civitavecchia which is about an hour north of Rome. If you are thinking of doing this ferry it is definitely worth mentioning that you should take your own food. We sadly didn’t and found that the food was not good and very overpriced! Lesson learnt!

It was around 7pm when we docked so we just needed a park up for the night. We had one in mind. It was right in the centre of of town! There really wasn’t much room but we just managed to squeeze into a corner.

It was a really busy place with not much room around us and a busy market going on just up the road in the morning! We needed to wake up early and move fast! Rome here we come.

We opted for a park up just outside Rome for obvious reasons. It was a bus ride into Rome which took about half an hour. We chose a guarded car park for safety reasons. Cost was €20 a night, we got charged an extra €5 due to length of our van otherwise it would have been €15. This was still cheaper than any of the other options we’d looked at.

We arrived at the park up at around 9.30am so plenty of time for us to get the bus into the centre.

We got off at the last stop which was Piazza Venezia, the Town Square.

When you first see these buildings it’s quite overwhelming. The photos don’t really do it justice as is often the case.

Today the building is home to the National Instiute of Archaeology and History of Art, and the National Museum of Palazzo Venezia- formerly the Palace of St Mark.

The monument houses the Alter of the Fatherland, named for the unknown soldier, in honour of all those who died at war.

The statue of King Vittorio Emanuelle II is very prominent feature.

We had a good walk around, took many photographs but decided not to go inside. Rome is definitely somewhere that is overwhelming and you could easily end up overspending.

Instead we decided it was definitely time to walk to the Vatican and have our first pizza in Italy on the way.

After our pizza the walk was about 20 minutes. The nearer we got there were more and more people trying to sell all the usual memorabilia, t-shirts, key rings, candles and loads of other bits too.

The photo below is St Peter’s Square the large plaza located directly in front of St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. It is the famous square where the world gets to see The Pope when he comes out to talk. There are also big screens dotted about so that the crowds can see him.

The square and the Basilica are named after Saint Peter, an apostle of Jesus. Catholics believe that St Peter was the very first Pope.

St Peters Square, Vatican City

We took some more photo’s and headed back on the bus. We decided that tomorrow we would once again get a ticket for the hop on hop off bus. This would give us an overview of the city. After talking to a friend we also decided that we would go and see the Sistine Chapel. Time to get some rest. It had been a long day.

The next day we got the bus early back to Piazza Venezia and went to buy our hop on hop off bus ticket. We decided to do the whole trip without getting off so we could see everything and also decide what we wanted to go back to.

One of the most famous landmarks is of course The Colosseum. We chose not to go inside. We had to be selective in Rome and in Italy otherwise we would have spent a small fortune!

The Colleseum

Here’s a snapshot of some of what we saw from the bus.

Castel Sant’Angelo means The Castle of The Holy Angel in English. As you can see from the photo it is a cylindrical building which stands in Parco Adriano. It was commissioned by the Roman Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for his family. Later the building was used by the popes as a fortress and castle. It is now a museum. It was once the tallest building in Rome.

The Ponte Vittorio Emanuele II is a bridge commemorating Vittorio Emanuele II of Italy. It is decorated at the ends with bronze winged victories as shown in the middle photograph.

The Arch of Constantine is a triumphal arch dedicated to the emperor Constantine the Great. It commemorates Constantine’s victory over Maxentius at the battle of Milvian Bridge in AD 312!

The Palatine Hill is one of the most ancient parts of Rome and has been called ‘The first nucleus of the Roman Empire’. It is now a large open air museum and also includes many finds from other ancient Italian sites.

We got off the bus and got tickets to go to The Vatican museums and ultimately The Sistine Chapel.

To go to the Sistine Chapel you have to buy an entry ticket to The Vatican museums. The museums display works that have been amassed by the Catholic Church over centuries. The museums were founded in the 16th Century and consist of over 70,0000 sculptures and paintings. They are high in the list of the most visited art galleries in the world! If you’ve been there you can see why!

There isn’t really much I could say or explain about about anything we saw here that would do it justice. There is so much in the way of artwork on the walls and on the ceilings. It makes you wonder how long it took just for one piece to be created and there are honestly so many that it is mind blowing.

We walked the path through to get to the Sistine Chapel. Here are a few photos on the route through. It is really just a tiny snippet. You could honestly spend a whole day there and not see everything. It is quite overwhelming.

We didn’t even go in any of the other Vatican museums. Just going through and seeing The Sistine Chapel was enough for us.

We finally reached The Sistine Chapel. We were not allowed to take any photo’s in there, I think because they do not want the damage of camera flashes. The artwork inside The Sistine Chapel is the work of Michaelangelo.

When we left the Vatican City it was time to have a late lunch. We decided to go to Piazza Navona. It’s quite a famous square with many restaurants and fountains in the middle. It was quite lively with a great atmosphere although we did not manage to see any street performers, maybe the time of year? As I believe they are sometimes there.

We sat outside and had some lovely food. I had seafood pasta and Dee had seafood risotto.

After our food we decided to go to an Italian ice cream parlour for desert.

When in Rome…….🤣

This did of course have to be done! We were now officially exhausted after another long day!

Time for us to go and get our bus back to our park up.

We decided to move on the next day. We could easily have stayed longer but like London it was very easy to become overwhelmed and spend loads of money!

Our next stop was Naples and Pompei. You can find out how we got on in our next post.

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9 thoughts on “Rome

  1. Isn’t Rome amazing. We were there many years ago and walked our feet off. At that time we didn’t find it expensive but things have changed I’m sure. It is quite a walk to the Sistine Chapel, Les kept thinking g we had missed it. And isn’t that ceiling amazing. So glad you got a good look around. We quite like Civitaveccia having called in there twice when in cruises. Keep up the great work with your blog 😘


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