One of my favorite things we did in Italy was to follow Rick Steve’s Night Walk Across Rome*. We enjoyed this mile long walk so much we did it in reverse the next day…during sunlight hours, so you’ll see a mix of photos! 🙂
It took two weeks to create this post…the memory game I had to play to recall all the sites, the research on the history for all those sites, compiling all of the photos in chronological order, and then to write something interesting…oh boy! So, it’s a pretty lengthy post… shall I stop rambling now so we can get started?!?!
Here’s the route we took so you can follow along:Starting at Campo de’ Fiori, it’s one of Rome’s most colorful spots. In the day, it hosts a fruit and vegetable market and cafe’s and pub crawlers in the evening. It was known as the “Field of Flowers” in ancient times and as Christian pilgrims started to pass through it to get to the Vatican, it became a thriving market.
Next stop, according to our map is Piazza Navona. This place was a complete surprise. Especially since it was a five steps away from Campo de’ Fiori. It felt like we were in a completely different city! This spot is considered Rome’s most interesting night scene featuring street music, artists, fire-eaters, gelato and a ton of outdoor cafes, but during the day, a great time to take photos.
The primary focus in this Piazza was The Four Rivers Fountain. Four burly river gods support an Egyptian obelisk. The water of the world gushes everywhere: The Nile has his head covered, since the headwaters were unknown then; he Ganges holds an oar; The Danube turns to admire the obelisk; And Uruguay’s Río de la Plata tumbles backward in shock, wondering how he ever made the top four. Personally, I’d like to thank the tourist in the second picture for the “butt” shot.
Next up, The Pantheon. The 40-foot single-piece granite columns of the Pantheon’s entrance show the scale the ancient Romans built on. The word “AMAZING” doesn’t describe this beautiful building. Now the fun part…can you see me? I’m standing next to one of the columns and I’m 5’2”.
and during the day…
SO CROWDED!! I absolutely love seeing monuments during the evening and I honestly prefer Washington D.C. at night.
Fourth on the tour, is the Tazza d’Oro Casa del Caffe, one of Rome’s top coffee shops, dates back to the day when this area was licensed to roast coffee beans. You may remember the coffee picture I shared a few months ago here. It’s this coffee shop where we got the really cute coffee photos and ruined me trained me to appreciate good tasting coffee…WITHOUT SUGAR!
Only visiting at night? They have a quick vending machine. And to think, you think I’m crazy. But I’m not, so I made Mr. P take a photo for proof…
Our fifth stop on this tour was the Piazza Capranica. To the right of the palace leads to a 6th century B.C. Egyptian obelisk taken as a trophy by Augustus after his victory in Egypt over Mark Antony and Cleopatra. Originally set-up as a sundial, walk the zodiac markings to the well-guarded front door. That would be Italy’s parliament building.
Some see politicians, political demonstrations, and TV Cameras. We saw the Carabinieri, Italy’s equivalent to the FBI. Who just happened to pull us over in Florence when we took the “scenic” back roads. If you get pulled over, just tell them you are a visitor in the Italian language. When they realize you are English-speaking (and they will because you butchered it so badly!), smile gracefully. You’ll be on your way very quickly.
Our sixth stop would be the famous Trevi Fountain. This watery avalanche celebrates the abundance of pure water, which has been brought into the city since the days of ancient aqueducts.
and the selfies…
Don’t be afraid to drink from the water fountain which is cleverly hidden in the back right corner. The tourists thought I was crazy; the Romans smiled with approval. 🙂
Legend says if you throw a coin in, you’ll be sure to return to Rome.
Our seventh and final stop is the famous Spanish Steps. The wide, curving staircase is one of Rome’s iconic sights! The 138 steps lead sharply up from the Piazza di Spagna, forming a butterfly shape as they fan out around a central terrace.
The design culminates at the top in an obelisk framed between two Baroque church towers. Mr. P and I ran up to the top. Remember, 138 steps. ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY-EIGHT!
What was your favorite spot on the tour?
*the tour map and some information was taken from Rick Steve’s website which can be found here. All other images are mine.