Rome, Italy: The City That Keeps Surprising

Kate GodfreyMondays on the Move with Kate is a travel series following the adventures of Caldwell Travel’s Kate Godfrey as she explores the world and shares her experiences. This month Kate is back in Rome, Italy, eating lots of pizza & gelato while wandering the cobblestoned streets.

Rome Italy Vacation Packages Colosseum Campidoglio St Peter's Piazza del Popolo Caldwell Travel Indianapolis Travel AgentCaptions: (clockwise from top left): Carnevale celebrations in Piazza del Popolo, the Colosseum, the Campidoglio, St Peter’s Square in Vatican City

Ah, Rome. The Eternal City. The city that keeps surprising. Yes, of course there are the icons: Trevi Fountain, the Colosseum (above), Vatican City, the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, and on and on… they are all fantastic in their own way. They draw us back to Rome time and time again. They are a must see for any visitor to Italy. But what I have enjoyed over the last six weeks in Rome are the little things: the Vespas, the “Ciao!” and “Buongiorno!” greetings, the gelato, the cobblestones, the churches, the museums, the art in public spaces, the architecture, the slow pace of Italian life, and more.

This being our third trip to Rome (what can I say, we love it!) we dug a little deeper and found some gems that were new to us:

Carnevale – For two weeks the city of Rome enjoys a wonderful festival with parades and street performances, fireworks and masks (of course!) right before kicking off the season of Lent.
Borghese Gallery – A fantastic museum in a wonderful park. So many incredible statues and paintings. Bernini, Raphael, Titian, Canova, Caravagio and more. Make sure to get your tickets in advance, they sell out pretty much every day.
Climbing the cupola of St Peter’s Basilica – We had visited St Peter’s before and been amazed by the size, architecture and art on display. This time we decided to climb the stairs all the way to the top of the cupola for an unforgettable view of the Rome skyline.
Ara Pacis – This little known museum houses an incredible altar of peace that was commissioned in 13 BC. It is interesting to read about the story of the altar and the history of how it was rediscovered and reassembled in the 20th century.

Rome Italy St Peter's Basilica Vacation Packages Caldwell Travel Indianapolis Travel AgentThe cupola of St Peter’s Basilica casts its reflection into the Tiber River in downtown Rome.

One evening on our way to enjoy drinks and appetizers (Prosecco, anyone?) at a café in Piazza Navona we had to stop to enjoy the sunset over the Tiber River. The dome of St Peter’s Basilica juts out into the sky with Ponte Sant’Angelo at its feet. Moments like this are why we travel, especially to places like Rome, Italy. The beauty and the serenity of a simple moment like this one is not soon forgotten.

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