Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome October 29th 2019

We couldn't help it...off we set to walk to Maggiore...always trust a girl who can read a map upside down.. A wander through some other streets & entered the City through the Wall at Porto Maggiore....can't go wrong there. Maggiore itself is magnificant...one of the four Papal Basilicas...drawing a large crowd today. The outside rear is just as grand as the front. Repubblica Piazza with the the Bascilica Santa Maria degli Angeli. Our last stroll home through some typical Roman streets.... read more
City Wall Porto Maggiore
Old trams still in use
Maggiore facade

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome October 28th 2019

A last day to revisit some sights...tommorrow will most likely be taken up preparing for the big flights home. The Colosso (forum) can't leave without witnessing it's grandeur one last time. A shot of the Arch of Constantine. The Appian Way with all it's columns. The Trevi Fountain, we were so early they were still cleaning out the euros from the day before....so no water running through the fountain. Columns being made use of today in Piazza di Pietra of the stock exchange building which was once the Temple of Hadrian in 145 AD. Pantheon & it's big hole in the ceiling....now that is clever. With the tomb of Vittorio Emanuele who was before Mussolini. Back to Piazza Nuova....the Four Rivers Fountain where we started our holiday. The Column of Marcus Aurelius (Roman Emperor). The Spagna ... read more
Arch of Constantine
Appian Way
Trevi Fountain

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Ostia Antica October 27th 2019

A sudden decision to go to Ostia Antica today....Sunday the metro & train might be quieter.....I need to say now, there is no such thing as quiet in Rome!! €1.50ea took us all the way out to the original settlement of Rome beside the Tiber River & the Sea. 69ha of ruins, mainly the lower story & foundations of a city that was huge in architecture, forums, baths, city council, amphitheatre & homes. The oldest remnants date to 620 BC. Abandoned 9th Century AD. Like I said before they built some good foundations. Mosaic floors representing the different trades in the Commercial sector next to the Amphitheatre still remain. Lots of photos to tell the story. €12ea entry fee. We met two couples on seperate ocassions to have a wee chat in English & swap stories....they ... read more

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome October 25th 2019

Hit the pavement 10am...to see the most prestigious ranked Papal Basilica in Rome (even over St Peter's). And we were not disappointed. Obviously dedicated to St John the Baptist. As the Cathedral of the Pope as Bishop to Rome.. it ranks highest. Found our way through the Roman City Walls to S. Giovanni. Huge & moderately ornate compared to St Peter's. So many Masters of the Arts were commissioned by the Basilicas & Churches to paint frescos, mosaic, sculpture...so they were able to produce some magnificent pieces at no cost to themselves...hence they became so good at their own skills. There was demand for art in aiming to be prestigious as weatlthy families commissioned artists to adorn their churches & palaces. So the beginnings of the Renaissance. A walk onto Santa Croce in Guresaleme 325, a ... read more
Outside the wall
Inside the wall

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 24th 2019

Supposed to rain today...back packs all sorted last night...out by 9.30am to Santa Maria Novella Stazione to beat the rain. 161,000 people a day move through the station. Our high speed train at 10:52 took 90mins to Rome....travelling at times 251kms per hour! 😯😲 didn't feel a thing!! Arriving into Roma Termini Stazione we were armed with our prepurchased metro tickets from our last visit so we were straight onto the A Line metro, 4 stops to San Giovanni's 'Re di Roma'. About 8 roads to choose from to find Via Pinerolo...it was of course the only one unamed! Our host was waiting for us. Alessandro greeted us & showed us around. We chatted for about half an hour (he spoke very good English). A great restful night in a quiet neighbourhood. Friday there is a ... read more
Santa Maria Novella
High speed train
251km per hour!!

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 23rd 2019

Our last day in Florence...a bit nostalgic.. Why go to a Museum when the whole of Florence is a Museum. Art comes out to meet you. The Masters of Art City draws numbers of art minded people. We met a couple from florida yesterday, (he approached us this time :)) She has a degree of sorts in Literature having taught English at Uni level, co-ordinated Tampa teachers to Japan for International Schools. Right into her Art having lived in NY for many years. She does Writing & Art so we chatted for half an hour & exchanged contact details. Many Composers & Artists also lived in Lucca over time. Firenze is a hub of artists from all over the World who want to achieve an extremely high standard of fine art. Like cooking you have to ... read more
A brighter day over the Arno
Top of the Ponte Vecchio
Ponte Vecchio jeweller-the boards fold over to shut shop

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Lucca October 22nd 2019

We made it this time! It was the one place on our 'want to do list' while in Florence. Caught the bus that goes straight past our door, DD Lucca €9ea one way. An hour drive on the toll motorway. Not so many cars due to the tolls but plenty of trucks. Checked the weather before & expecting 28°😎. Lucca is located on the fertile plains of the Serchio River. We travelled past many plant nurseries on the way into greater Lucca. It is well known for it's pretty old town inside some well maintained Renaissance City Walls. There is evidence of a settlement in 3rd BC called Luk...meaning marsh & of course giving the city it's name. The Rampart has 12 bastions & since there was no military importance anymore became a tree lined promenade ... read more
From the wall looking into the city
From the City wall
The wall itself

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 21st 2019

And there we were out earlier today....tried to catch a bus to Lucca on our street....that didn't eventuate so moved to our plan B! An adventurous climb for me however a very pretty walk up (emphasis on up!) on slow mode to San Miniato & David's square. The view over Firenze is just magnificant!! San Miniato 1013-18. It has an adjoining Monastery run by the Olivetans since1373. Can hear them chanting prayer. The pavement in photos dates 1207. The Fresco cycle dates 1387 of saint Benedict. The Monks here make Benedictine Liqueurs, honey & herbal teas. Did you know: liqueurs are historical descendants of herbal medicines which were made as early as the 13th century by Monks. Just some sceneic photos today then back down..(emphasis on down) through some Florence streets.... read more
Santa Maria Novella
Shop of replica statues

Europe » Italy » Tuscany October 20th 2019

We're getting lazy now....11am before we hit the pavement.. what is really great is that we are within walking distance of everything....so accessible, no buses or automobiles required here! And so it was to the Palazzo Strozzi first up...up, down, up the pavements, down the pavements, side step, back step, doorway step, road step....so glad we were not here in July we probably would have just been in a jamb fullstop!!! saw a couple of people trip their ankles on the uneven paving stones....hence our technique of road use for walking when possible...look out for the scooters & those 3 wheel vehicles....AND especially the no noise electric cars! Onto Santa Croce 1294-1385 Gothic style 'Temple of the Italian Glories'...buried here are Michaelangelo, Galileo, Rossini, Ghiberti, Bartolini... It is the largest Franciscan church in the world. Many ... read more
Santa Maria Novella
Marble facade of Santa Croce
Palazzo Strozzi

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence October 19th 2019

Fabulous Florence...we return! It has been a little while since our last visit. Not alot has changed in this grand old city. Home of the Masters of Art! There is a new tram system since we were here last. Much like Nice but on a very small scale compared. Much of a sleep in after Yesterdays' effort...I'm sure we snored the whole five floor apartment awake!! We stocked up our food cupboard yesterday evening, after our arrival, at the Esselunga Supermache which we found not far down the road with the guidance of a local senior citizen who was returning with her Esselunga shopping bag.....you know you are close when you see people carrying supermarket bags. They love to chat...she had to put her bags down so she could chat with her hands.....no hands no chat! ... read more
Come into my shop..
Three wheels

Tot: 2.244s; Tpl: 0.015s; cc: 11; qc: 87; dbt: 0.0331s; 2; m:saturn w:www (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.4mb