This was a weekend trip taken in November 2009. We flew to Rome International airport with EasyJet and took a taxi to our hotel.
We began our day in Rome with an open-topped bus tour. This was a great way to see all the sites and decide which places we wanted to return to. Most of the bus tours are hop-on-hop-off so you can use them throughout the day.
The picture above shows the Roman Forum with Trajan’s Column.
Day Two – The Colosseum
We devoted a whole day to visiting this amazing monument and the surrounding area and used the underground system to travel to the area.
We had to wait around 40 minutes in the queue to enter the Colosseum. It is quicker if you book tickets online before visiting. There were a lot of people outside offering guided tours but this isn’t really necessary as you can get an audio guide for much less.
The Colosseum is an impressive building and even more so when viewed from inside. The floor inside has been partially restored. The underground rooms and passageways that were used for dressing rooms and storing props can also be seen.
Just a short walk from the Colosseum are the remains of the Forum. The actual area itself is not accessible to the public but the ruins can be clearly seen from the pavement and there are boards put up to explain what building would have been where.
Day Three – The Vatican
A visit to the Vatican is a must for anyone visiting Rome. We started our visit by going inside St Peter’s Church.
Even if you are not religious it is worth going inside just to see the outstanding collection of paintings, statues and gold decorations.
Below St Peter’s are the archive chambers and also the chambers where previous Popes are buried.
Around the side of the building you can pay to go to the top of St Peter’s (the crown above the dome on the picture above). There is a lift that will take you partway then you have to climb the stairs. Although quite tiring I would recommend doing this simply for the outstanding view from the top.
Another must is the Vatican museum and the Sistine chapel which is located a short walk away from St Peter’s Square. Allow a few hours to see the museum properly.
The highlight of the Vatican is the Sistine chapel with its ceiling beautifully painted by Michaelangelo.
It was difficult to get a good photograph of the ceiling because you are not allowed to lie down on the floor of the chapel. As there are numerous photos online we decided to just enjoy viewing the beautiful ceiling.