Dream Destinations – Rome

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After including a little Italian flavor to our Dream Destinations series with our feature on Pompeii, I think I have well and truly been given the bug to explore other locations throughout this beautiful country. Our next feature is the gorgeous capital city of Rome.

When you are thinking about European history, architectural genius and relaxing atmospheres many of you that have visited Rome will likely put this at the top of the list to meet each of these categories. Rome can undoubtedly be overwhelming to a first time visitor simply because there is just so much to do there and if you have any sort of time constraints, the most difficult task is establishing what to see and when to schedule it.

To provide a little assistance on the key attractions and landmarks in Rome, here are our top spots in the City of the Seven Hills.

Colosseum

Image courtesy of Bjarki Sigursveinsson (Self-photographed) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Bjarki Sigursveinsson (Self-photographed) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
The Roman Colosseum is probably the most famous landmark still standing from the Roman Empire. Constructed in AD 80, this impressive structure housed many gladiator fights and its unsurprising that this has been used so frequently in movie recreations of the Roman games. The Colosseum is located in the heart of piazza del Colosseo in the center of Rome. 

Standing proudly above surrounding Roman streets, the Colosseum dominates the area that it resides. It is symbolic of the Roman empire in terms of its size purely representing the power of the Empire in addition to the architectural flamboyance that prevailed even thousands of years ago. Tours of the Colosseum today are available and I am sure that most first-time visitors to Rome will have this near the top of their bucket list.

Trevi Fountain

Image courtesy of Karelj (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Karelj (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Coined as the most famous fountain in the world, the Trevi Fountain is an extraordinary piece of Roman mastery. The largest Baroque fountain in the world, the Trevi Fountain is over 85 feet tall and shoots almost 3 million cubic feet of water every day!

Everything in the design of the Trevi Fountain is uniquely related to a story of Roman ancestry and of course for every visitor that throws a coin into this fountain, they are left with a guarantee that they will return to the beautiful city of Rome.

But do you know that there is a correct technique in throwing the coin into the fountain? Legend has it that you must throw a coin with your right hand over your left shoulder with your back to the fountain. Of course, a lot of money is thrown into the fountain but you will be pleased to know that all of the proceeds from this go to charity!

Roman Forum

Roman Forum
Image courtesy of Stefan Bauer, http://www.ferras.at (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons
Continuing the theme of Roman architecture simply because a visit to Rome for the first-time would not be the same without experiencing all of these great historic landmarks, the Roman Forum is another great example of brilliant infrastructure still standing from the Roman era. This plaza was the hub of the Roman Empire where everything relating to day to day business took place.

Just standing today in this location allows you to think about what daily life must have been like thousands of years ago and comparing to where we are today. It’s awesome how the architecture can still remain in place even after so many years and this is a credit to the design and brilliance of those that dedicated their time to constructing these masterpieces.

Stadio Olimpico

Image courtesy of Gaúcho (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC-BY-SA-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5-2.0-1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Gaúcho (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC-BY-SA-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5-2.0-1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Of course whenever I visit a new city, I am interested in seeing all of the historical buildings and attractions but at the same time I would love to see some of the more modern infrastructure, in particular those related to the sports teams/events in the area. Rome plays host to Lazio and AS Roma in the footballing world and both of these teams play their home matches at the impressive Stadio Olimpico stadium.

I think it would be really cool to do both a stadium tour here but also to watch one of these teams play a Serie A encounter ideally against each other but against any team would be a great experience.

St. Peter’s Basilica

Image courtesy of Giacomo della Porta [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Image courtesy of Giacomo della Porta [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
After taking a break from the history and seeing the beautiful Stadio Olimpico football stadium, let’s get back to what Rome is really about and discovering some more genius design with St. Peter’s Basilica. It is a Renaissance designed church and still remains as one of the largest throughout the world.

***This post is part of the 2014 A to Z Blogging Challenge (#DreamDestinations #AtoZChallenge)***

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15 COMMENTS

    • I certainly agree with you but I always find the Italian stereotype to have very friendly and relaxing personalities so I think that is what I was referring to there. You know the barista style coffee shops where folks just sit outside and take in the afternoon sun! But you are so true, with that amount of sights to see, it’s pretty much all go when you are in Rome!

  1. I chose Rome today too – we had a great time there a few years ago. It was my first visit, but John had been a couple of times when he was a student (not yesterday!) I was impressed he could still remember his way round.
    Anabel recently posted…R is for RomeMy Profile

    • Great minds think alike Anabel! Will head on over to yours shortly and check it out. I am so ready for us to go there because when you think about stereotypical European history and gorgeous architecture, I find it difficult to think about any other city that outweighs Rome (London being the exception!).

    • Very envious of you being able to check out the stadiums around Italy, I bet that was a really cool experience! I think or at least hope Rome would be near the top of most folks bucket lists. Then again you get some folks that don’t get all the European history and architecture which I personally think is their loss if they don’t want to explore it further!

  2. I simply adore Rome, I have been there many times and it can still surprise me! Seeing the picture of the Olympic Stadium I remembered when I went there to see a Champions League game against Valencia in 2003, and I was sitting in the middle of the real fans behind the goal. I have never experienced a similar atmosphere in another match, and I have been to many Barça and Real Madrid matches.
    Gabor Kovacs recently posted…Catalunya and the ritual of the “calçotada”My Profile

  3. I spent a very short, very busy one day in Rome and I loved it. I didn’t know what to expect as leading up to it everyone told me I wouldn’t like it, and I had spent a few days in Florence without loving it. But, Rome, Rome is my city.

    I think you have great sites in your round-up. The only problem is now I really, really NEED to go back.
    Ann recently posted…Scavenger huntMy Profile

  4. Chris I can’t even begin to explain how much fun we had in Rome! One of my favorite things we did was the underground tour at St. Peter’s Basilica to see the tomb of St. Peter. Other than being a little creepy in that it’s claustrophobic and your underground so it’s extremely humid and smells like dirt it was so interesting. I highly recommend it. My list of what I loved could go on and on, it’s fabulous!
    Daidri | Thee Getaway Gal recently posted…Relaxing at Ritz Carlton Half Moon BayMy Profile

  5. Rome is amazing! I spent my whole time there pushing my jaw closed with my hand every 10 minutes as there is something jaw dropping around every corner. Surprisingly enough my lest favourite part of the city was the Roman Forum. I think I had thought it would be the best thing about Rome but then so many other things trumped it. Hope you guys get there soon!
    Jen Seligmann recently posted…Where in the World Wednesday #13My Profile

    • Sammi, no unfortunately we have never visited Italy at all so many of these destinations, especially Rome are near the top of our bucket list! It is so beautiful over there with so many amazing things to see and experience.

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