It’s day three in Italy on this trip and to be hones with you, this is the first time I had a chance to sit down and write something. But don’t worry it was all for good reasons 🙂 We had a wonderful few days in Rome and now we are traveling on the famous Italian Fercciarossa fast speed train from Rome to Napoli. Let’s just say I like trains, and this had to be done 😉 And believe you me, it is fast! We are flying through some beautiful Italian countryside.
So Rome. I’m in love with the city, no doubt about that. It is one of the most sensory overload cities I have ever been to. There is something to see literally around every corner. And everything is walkable, which I like. Now my feet are bit on a tender side as we clocked in some where around 42000 steps (thanks iPhone for keeping track) in the past few days. If you have been to Rome, you will understand when I say, everything is in the city! You don’t need to take a bus out-of-town to see Colosseum, you walk down the street with gelato in your hand (yeah, the diet’s gone out the window for the holidays 😀 )and there is just stands next to the buildings across the road. And this is the same thing with everything in Rome.
My absolute favourite was the (surprise, surprise) coffee houses. You just go in for a shot of espresso, many of them don’t even have seats. I highly recommend even if you like your coffee with milk, or cappuccino, just once try the froth covered black espresso. It is divine!
Just a few tips that I was trying to find out before coming here, but seemed hard enough to find. The vatican museum is massive! It will take you several hours, and if you are interested in the stuff, easily half a day. It is busy, and there were times in some of the rooms when you got stuck between five different tour groups, it did feel bit claustrophobic. The Sistine chapel is at the back of the museum, and there is no real shortcuts (unless you paid for one of the private tours.) But it truly is as magnificent as people say. Michael Angelo’s work is just so intriguing. There is also unbelievable 3D feel to many of the characters in the ceiling. Did I feel like I was in a holy place? Not really… I was more impressed of Michael Angelo’s work than any spiritual aspect of it. But this definitely has a lot to do with the hundreds of other tourists in the room at the same time and the constant announcements by the security to stay quiet and not to take any photographs.
On a side note, I’ve been to Jerusalem. If you want to feel the presence of some kind of greater power, that is the place to go.
But don’t get me wrong, it is absolutely mind-blowing experience, and the Sistine chapel alone is worth all the hours of walking. The collection of Roman statues is impressive, and many of them is in excellent condition. You can definitely get a great understanding how the male figure on these statues has effected our view of male body image (back to the gym J.P… 😀 )
But do your self a favour, book the tickets on the official Vatican website (any other ticket vendor will charge hefty commission). There is few extra fees, for the online booking, but they are well worth it for skipping the queue. You will be standing in the queue to buy your tickets for a long time, the weather can have sun beating on you, or a rain shower just come out of nowhere, so you will thank me when you get to skip that queue.
And as I mentioned, good pair of walking boots are the best way to enjoy Rome.
The author J.P. Kallio is a singer songwriter
To get EIGHT of his songs for free go HERE