For me, the most memorable place we visited in Italy was the city of Rome. This city attracted me the most primarily because of the many breath-taking sights we saw there. We began at the coliseum, although i had been to Italy twice before, and visited the coliseum both times I had never before been within it’s walls. I was stunned by the massive room sized bricks that were used to make this grand structure which had withstood the test of time. Touching those cold stone walls i could not even begin to imagine how people, without the aid of machinery managed to lift those bricks, not just into position, but also transport them from the surrounding mountains to the construction sight. Within the Coliseum, I marvelled and the endless arch ways, the numerous floors i never knew existed and the exposed underground area which was used in ancient times to hold slaves and animals alike. As well, it was interesting to learn that the coliseum was not given it’s name because of it’s size, but because of a massive statue of emperor Nero which was posted just out side of the coliseum, named the colossus.
Next we visited the monument of the Unknown Soldier. This building has to be one of my favourites in all of Italy, in my opinion; its architecture matches the story behind the monument perfectly. The clean white walls of the huge monument to symbolise the thankfulness of the soldiers and their families for the recognition of all those who never returned from battle or who were never found, juxtaposed by the dark, black statues of angels and soldiers on top, representing the sorrow that still remains for the loss of so many young men who could never be properly mourned as their bodies never returned home.
After, climbing to the top of the Monument for the Unknown Soldier we moved on to another of my absolute favourite spots in Italy, the Trevi fountain. The size of the fountain alone is enough to leave one speechless, but the ornate carvings of Poseidon and the clear blue rushing water truly makes the fountain one of a kind. But what really strikes me a special about the Trevi fountain is the atmosphere round it. To your left there’s an old man selling hot, roasted chest-nuts in brown paper cones, the delicious smell wafting towards you. To the right, fresh pressed sandwiches filled with proscuttio, or mortadella, boconccini cheese, sliced tomatoes, cured olives. And all around you people are smiling chatting; enjoying huge cones piled high with gelato, children and adults alike all tossing coins into the fountain, smiling at the promise of returning again to this unbelievable spot.
The day finished off at the Vatican. This held another memorable moment for me as I had never before climbed up all the steps to the top of the “cuopola”. I will never forget the view, looking over the top straight down to see the steep, sloped walls of the dome, and looking out on the city as the sun set in the distance behind the grey, blue mountains that seemed to line the circumference of the whole country.
And this is why our day in the city of Rome was the most memorable for me during our trip to Italy, not to mention it was also my birthday.
I greatly enjoyed this course mostly because I was given the chance to practise my Italian and learn more about my heritage, the history of Italy, where the city of Rome got its name from and as well as visit different cities in Italy which I had never seen before. The only aspect I would change in the future would be to read the whole book / story of Jason and the Golden Fleece, from the synopsis I read online of the story I found very interesting and would like to learn more about the myths of ancient Italy.