Rome – Day Three

Another day in the hustle and bustle of Rome. It is a very busy city but so exciting and full of life! The people here are great too. The fact that we don’t know more than eight words in Italian hasn’t been an issue at all. Most people know at least a bit of English and those that don’t are still very helpful and animated enought that we understand what they are saying. :) We went to the Vatican today. First the museums and Sistine Chapel and then St. Peter’s Square and Basilica. After that we headed to the Pantheon and other sites between the Vatican and our hotel. It’s a good thing we are walking so much because we sure are eating well!

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We rode the subway to the Vatican and walked back, across the Tiber River and through many sights of Rome!
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The Vatican Museums, located inside the Vatican City State, are among the greatest museums in the world, since they display works from the immense collection built up by the Roman Catholic Church throughout the centuries including some of the most renowned classical sculptures and most important masterpieces of Renaissance art in the world.
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Within the museums grounds, making our way to the Sistine Chapel.
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Pretty much every room and hallway and doorway and nook and… EVERYTHING in the museums was this ornate and more. It was an ambush of art! Very cool but very overwhelming as well.
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Cullan posing with a non-naked sculpture. He is appalled with the nudity in so many religious works of art. ;)
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This is the crowd we were with the entire time while trying to get through to the Sistine Chapel. We were not allowed to take photos in the chapel itself. It was so pretty though less so when packed wall to wall with people. Seeing the Creation of Adam was worth it but this was a somewhat stressful endeavor. None of us are good with crowds.
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The exit staircase at the Museums. Like I said, ART EVERYWHERE!
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Taking a break before heading to St. Peter’s Square. The panini from the carts outside of the tourist areas were yummy!
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My boys walking to St. Peter’s.

 

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St. Peter’s Basilica. The largest church in the world! Construction of the present basilica, replacing the Old St. Peter’s Basilica of the 4th century, began on April 18, 1506 and was completed on November 18, 1626. 120 years to build!
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If you want ‘over the top’ the Catholics have you covered! OMG! This basilica is amazing. This structure just in front of the main altar is probably about 200 feet tall and made of mostly iron wood with metal accents.
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The dome, designed by Michaelangelo, is 453 feet high.
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The nave of St. Peter’s is 2346 feet long!

 

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Michealangelo’s Pieta in the Basilica. Circa 1498. Beautiful!
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At the entrance to St. Peter’s Square. There were thousands of people here the day before for Palm Sunday as well as the prior Tuesday for the installation of the new Pope. Lots of excitement around the Vatican lately.

 

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Built in (actually re-built) in about 126 AD, the Pantheon sits in the middle of Rome surrounded by more modern buildings full of shops, apartments, offices and restaurants. It has been in continuous use since the 7th century as a Roman Catholic Church, still having Sunday services each week. There is only one door, no windows, and no unnatural light. There is one large, open oculus at the top in the middle of the dome. Almost two thousand years after it was built, the Pantheon’s dome is still the world’s largest unreinforced concrete dome.
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Inside of the Pantheon. Deano in a church pew. Take it in. You likely won’t see it again. ;) Originally, this was built as a temple to the ancient Roman gods. The Catholic church took over and replaced all depictions of those gods with Christian art.
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This is a good perspective to see how huge the pillars of the Pantheon are.
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Stopping for ‘snacks’ at a neighborhood cafe. Note our fashionable scarves!
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Fun day!