Sunday, April 9, 2017

A Return to Florence Palm Sunday



I had the morning to look around Rome a bit more before my train to Florence. I checked out of my B and B and dropped my luggage off.  I explored some streets nearby and then I was back to the hotel, when suddenly I saw it. The pizza place I had read about was right across the street there were things blocking the view and looked like a different name so I went over and sure enough. I was not real hungry at this point but was determined to have some. I walked in and ordered 2 slices and a drink and I was surprised at the nice sizes I got for a cheap price you pay by the weight. I then went back to the B and B to retrieve my luggage and then walked to catch a cab I had been advised by the B and B owner that the taxi cabs were safe.  It was a quick ride to the train station and then a goodbye Rome I was happy to have seen you. 






I had visited Florence before and had vowed to return and I finally was doing just that I arrived and found my hotel quite easily it was across from the train station and the behind the main street. I left me luggage and headed out for a quick look walk to the Cathedral di Santa Marie del Fiore/Duomo of Florence.   I looked around had a gelato and then walked back to my hotel and had a relaxing evening.













I was back to the Dumo in early in the morning so that I could attend Palm Sunday Mass. I was able to get in and get a seat and hear the mass no clue what they were saying since of course it was in Italian.  After the mass I headed toward the Piazzale Michelangelo (Michelangelo Square), I walked around and then I sat and just enjoyed the beauty of the spot. Next up I headed down to the waterfront  I walked along and then across to a spot to have a gelato and it was pretty crowded and I had a bit of a wait, it was quite yummy.







Palms 


me and David



















Friday, April 7, 2017

Tripping to the fountain and Spanish Steps

at the Spanish Steps

Final full day in Rome and I had a lot to see, I went for my morning breakfast and I tried a different pastry, I no longer said coffee as he knew what I wanted. I sat in my usual chair and enjoyed my little breki. I then headed out to see as much as Rome as possible and I had several places in mind that I was determined to find today.








I was wandering in the general direction of what I wanted to see  and came across these characters,  I gave them some change and snapped a few shots. I then asked someone where the Spanish Steps were. I was fairly close so it did not take me too long to get there. It was neat to see but it was also very crowded too so it made it a bit hard to get photographs. Then I climbed to the top stopped along the way took photos and also just sat and enjoyed the spot. 


interesting characters










Trinità dei Monti






I then set off for the Trevi Fountain it was a must of my bucket list. It was not too far away but I was actually surprised when I came across it because it was just suddenly there beside me, I had come in to a side view. I could see it was quite packed but I still was able to enjoy it. I decided to take a break and found an ice cream shop and went in and had the best gelato of the trip so far was it good for you? I was back at the fountain taking more photos and also just sitting relaxing and people watching. 



My first view of Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain














San Marcello Al Corso

I was back on the road again and I was starting to get tired and hungry and decided to start walking back towards my B and B. I was wandering various streets when some thing caught my eye in the distance I could see huge statues so I headed in that direction. I stopped across a huge street and snapped some photos in the distance I decided I had to cross the street and get closer. It was quite a challenge and I had to cross various streets to get in front of it.  I snapped some photos and also sat and rested. I was trying to figure out what this place was because I had never heard of it. I found out later is was the National Monument to Victor Emmanuel II. I then slowly walked back I was in the mood for good meal and I knew just the place for a nice pita and then back to my room.



Monumento Nazionale a Vittorio Emanuele II
National Monument to Victor Emmanuel II









The Colosseum in the distanc

Thursday, April 6, 2017

At the Vatican

Today was visit the Vatican Day which meant another early start as wanted to get in ahead of the crowds and long lines. I headed to the restaurant and had my coffee and pastry at 7.15  I was in St Peter's Basilica quickly as the lines were short. I was quite impressed with everything inside and amazed at the size of it, and it is the largest Christian building church in the world.  I was there for over 2 hours I constantly running into priests carrying communion followed by groups of people. I almost missed seeing Michelangelo Pieta and the fact that I did not see it when I first went in was that that area must have been covered up, as some areas were.



Pieta




St Peter

















Then it was time for a bit of a break and I looked around for something to eat because I knew I would be in the Vatican museums quite awhile, I grabbed something at Mickey D 

as it was the only place close.  I had purchased a ticket online from the Vatican Museum website, they charge an extra 4 euro for the service and well worth it, because without one I knew I would be standing in line for hours.   I then headed over to the museums which was  a bit of a walk, along the Vatican walls it was great to have a ticket and pass the lines of people.  The Museum was quite crowded in some areas and I was so thankful that I did not do the guide thing as they sailed through the gallery hardly stopping. I was able to take my time in each area and just enjoy some of the amazing works of art that I was seeing.  I was totally impressed at some of the things I saw and was in there for over 4 hours I could have spent more time but was exhausted doing St Peters and Vatican Museum the same day can be exhausting especially as I had only arrived 2 days earlier. I was starved by now and found a place to eat called Pastasciutta it was a tiny place where they sold pasta very inexpensive and very good. I managed to find a seat inside rather than sit on the steps out side as many people were doing. 








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Vatican post office