Vatican MuseumsThese include a gigantic collection of art and sculptures. The buildings themselves are as pretty as the art. The tour ended at the Sistine Chapel. It was cool to see something so famous, but, honestly, after seeing all of the other ceilings, it didn't seem too special.
St. Peter's Square and Basilica
I wasn't particularly looking forward to seeing this, but it was actually really impressive.The basilica was so huge and ornate.
Villa Borghese/Borghese Gallery
This art gallery within a mansion is located in a giant park. We had to check our bags, so I didn't have my camera with me, but here's a picture of the gallery I found online.
We paid for a guided tour of the Colosseum, and it turned out to be well worth the money. Our guide was a stereotypical "macho" Italian (I'm sure it was mostly an act), and the tour was hilarious as well as informative.
Palatine Hill/Roman Forum
To me, this area is what I always thought of when I imagined Rome (other than the Colosseum, of course). I loved looking at all of the ruins.
I had no idea that the Pantheon has been turned into a church. It was cool to see, but the most interesting thing was the protest going on outside. Based on the pictures they were holding, we think it might have been an anti-vasectomy protest??
(Also found online)
- If someone offers to take your picture for you, don't let them, unless they look like a tourist, too. We ended up paying over $10 for 2 stupid Polaroids. Ah, well.
- The street names in Rome are on the buildings, not on signs.
- Don't linger too long at the posted outside menu of a restaurant unless you want to be forced to a table.
- Enjoying our first big Italian meal, complete with complimentary limoncello, biscotti, and a rose for me.
- Eating our lunch on the Spanish steps. We finished seconds before guards told another couple that there was no food allowed.
- Stepping off the Metra and seeing the Colosseum right there in front of us.