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Rome, briefly re-visited

I love Rome!

Unsurpassed quality of its historic and artistic treasures aside, it is very likely the most satisfying city in relation to my traveling preferences. I like to walk and see what awaits me beyond the next turn, hoping to find something to admire. Central Rome, like practically nowhere else, offers me something every few hundred steps, be it a grand church, a gorgeous square, a lovely fountain, a quaint corner, an amazing edifice of uncommon distinction and/or age, you get the point.

Our most recent visit to Rome was less than two full days long, tacked onto the end of the trip to Sicily. Barely enough time to make a circuit of usual attractions. Just enough time to recapture the feeling of being in a place that you do not want to leave.

Well-known visuals of must-see sights will likely dominate my photographic output no matter how many times I come back to Rome, but we start here with a few rooftop views.
Rome
Rome
Rome
Rome
Pretty amazing perspectives from the mansarde-level balcony of our rented room! I can gladly endure less than perfect accommodations for this!

We stayed a stone throw from Piazza Navona, one of those unmissable sights in Rome that is always photogenic way above average.
Piazza Navona, Rome
Piazza Navona, Rome
Piazza Navona, Rome
Piazza Navona, Rome
Piazza Navona, Rome
River Tiber may be a bit smaller and less preeminent in the topography of the city than some of its counterparts that disect other European capitals. It nonetheless offers many agreeable perspectives, such as this view of Ponte Sisto, a pedestrian river crossing built in the 15th century.
Ponte Sisto, Rome
Another angle gives you the dome of Saint Peter’s Cathedral in the background.
Rome
The next partially-obsured angle caught a segment of the oldest Roman bridge still standing, Ponte Fabricio. It was built in 62 BCE.
Rome
Of course, most of the structures from Ancient Rome only survive as ruins, which are found in different locations in central parts of the city. The couple of standing columns in this shot belong to the Temple of Apollo Sosianus dating from the 5th century BCE.
Rome
Nearby is the Portico of Octavia, erected in the 2nd century BCE.
Portico of Octavia, Rome
The Portico sits at the edge of the Jewish Ghetto, the narrow passageways of which are adorned here and there with recognizable symbols.
Rome
One of the cutest fountains in Rome, the Turtles Fountain, is in the near vicinity.
Fontana delle Tartarughe, Rome
Approaching Piazza Venezia from west, a couple of angles to the magnificent architectural composition of the area.
Piazza Venezia, Rome
Piazza Venezia, Rome
A close-up of the centerpiece of the Piazza Venezia ensemble, the Altar of the Fatherland.
Piazza Venezia, Rome
This edifice is also known as the Monument of Vittorio Emmanuele II. He was the first king of the unified Italy in the mid-19th century, and I am yet to visit an Italian town of a non-trivial size that does not have an equestrian statue of this king and a major thoroughfare named in his honor.

A different angle combining impressive sights from different eras. The neoclassical temple was finished in 1878. Trajan’s Column, with its incredible spiral bas relief, is a tad bit older, from 113 CE.
Rome
Another of the ancient remains in the area, Insula dell’Ara Coeli, a rare example of a multi-story residential building circa 2nd century CE.
Rome
Basilica of Santa Maria in Ara Coeli is a 12-century church that I inexplicably never set foot in on my past visits to Rome.
Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, Rome
Fronted by a steep 124-step staircase, the austere façade hides an exuberantly rich interior.
Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, Rome
Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, Rome
Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, Rome
Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, Rome
Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, Rome
A look down Scalinata dell’Ara Coeli.
Rome
And a look up Cordonata Capitolina that leads up to Campidoglio square.
Campidoglio, Rome
Ara Coeli staircase provides a couple of elevated angles to the sculptural and architectural ensemble of Campidoglio.
Campidoglio, Rome
Campidoglio, Rome
Behind the Senate Palace that anchors Campidoglio lies the best viewpoint over the Roman Forum.
Foro Romano, Rome
Foro Romano, Rome
Foro Romano, Rome
Foro Romano, Rome
Colosseum peeks from the background of the above shot.

The dome of Saint Peter’s can be seen from distance in various perspectives in Rome, such as this roofline view from Piazza del Quirinale.
Rome
Along with Colosseum and San Pietro, Fontana di Trevi is one of the emblematic sights of Rome, no less impressive and worth seeing over and over again for the crowds it attracts.
Fontana di Trevi, Rome
Fontana di Trevi, Rome
And the Pantheon is no less emblematic. One of the most amazing structures anywhere, it remains standing and functional for about 1,900 years.
Pantheon, Rome
On the back side of Pantheon there are still some fragments of the original Roman temple decorations.
Pantheon, Rome
A fragment of the sculptural composition of the Pantheon fountain on Piazza della Rotonda. Notice the facial expression reflecting significant annoyance at the pigeon who impudently landed on the stone head.
Rome
Yet another top sight, Castel Sant’Angelo, which started as a mausoleum just a few years after the construction of the Pantheon. The eponymous pedestrian bridge, built at the same time in the 2nd century CE, was enhanced in the 17th century with Baroque statues of angels, and is an attraction in itself.
Castel Sant'Angelo, Rome
Castel Sant'Angelo, Rome
As a small illustration of why I find Rome so satisfying in terms of walking and finding things to admire, this is a corner of Piazza dei Massimi, which is both very close to Piazza Navona and also hardly on any major walking route.
Rome
The combination of fading frescoes on the 15-century palazzo façade and an ancient Corinthian column (moved here in the 20th century, but originating in the 2nd) is very much worth admiring, IMHO.

And occasionally, it’s an unassuming detail that catches the eye.
Rome
Of course, this last one can happen anywhere you travel.

We walked as much as our feet could bear, but also stopped for coffee and food on more than one occasion – and managed to fit that into barely a day and a half in town. My better half found time to fulfill her bucket-list dream of riding a Vespa around Rome.
Rome
Me, I limited myself to an electric scooter for a short time, and then sat down on a lively square for a proper Aperol Spritz (two of those, eventually). No pictorial evidence of that, it must be noted.

There is no way that we will not be back in Rome again before long. I simply love it!

Posted in Travel Pictures, World Heritage