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Rome
Rome
Even if nowadays not all roads lead to Rome, it is still the poster for the good life. Here there is a perfect combination between the ancient world, its ruins, its impressive antiquities, incredible archeology, and a modern, vibrant, fashionable and tasteful city. There are narrow alleyways and broad avenues in this city, beautiful squares, magnificent churches and fantastic houses, alongside amazing ancient sites, museums full of artifacts and many wonderful monuments.

In Rome there are fascinating combinations between an ancient and more recent history, and a rhythm of contemporary life. From here the Roman emperors ruled the entire ancient world. Here Christianity was persecuted until the emperor turned it into the religion of the empire and persecuted all who did not accept it. Here the Pope acted and controlled the entire Catholic world. Here the dictator Mussolini spoke and tried to establish a new empire and ended up hanging in the streets like a fool.

However Rome is also Italy of the Renaissance and the Baroque, of the sublime art of Raphael and Michelangelo. Rome experienced in real time the inventions and discoveries of Leonardo de Vinci, one of the geniuses of mankind. In Rome, high-quality cinema was born, created by an Italian neo-realism. About cinema, "La Dolce Vita," the sweet life, is in Rome. In the city where the heart grew, also grew the pizza, the Italian ice cream, the pasta, the sounds of the Italian opera, the Italian design and fashion, the beautiful and incredibly fast cars of Italy, the handsome young men and of course the Italian women, from the abundant "mamas" that adorn you from delicacies to the beautiful women, who are dressed in the best of fashion and walk around soaring high above.

Rome is a cheeky and provocative candy. Visit to enjoy it!



#Accommodation
Staying around the Trevi Fountain and Via del Corso are mainly popular, comfortable and fun.



#Must See
Want to see the most popular destinations? - Click on the tag "Must see in Rome".



#With children
A trip for the whole family? - Click on the tag "Attractions for children in Rome".


#Food
There is no doubt that in Rome the pasta and pizza will be key players on your tables, especially if you are with children, but not necessarily. It is worth remembering the excellent Italian ice cream, which many consider the best in the world. As for coffee, of course, in Rome there is Italian coffee - definitely from the top line in the world. So enjoy your meals and check out the tag "Must eat in Rome".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NS-QfEfRnGo


#Shopping

The best time to shop in Rome is during the SALDI seasons (sales). There begin in Italy around January until February. Of course the easiest to get to are the summer sales that go on for most of August.

Do your shopping in the expensive Via Veneto, or the elegant and expensive Via di Condotti that connects the Spanish Steps to the Via del Corso. Here are much more reasonable prices for Italian designers and famous brands like Benetton, Sisley, Zara, and Pull and Bear.

Continue from here, through the Piaza del Popolo, to Via Cola di Rancho, near the Vatican. Here you can continue your shopping, with excellent brands and designers. Other streets around Piaza del Popolo are Via del Babuino and Via di Ripetta.

Italian fashion in reasonable prices you can find at Viale Marconi, in a simple neighborhood, a little far away from the city center.

With the best designer stock, leading brands and big discounts, Teichner Outlet is one of the best known stores in Rome. Every day from 10:30 am to 8:00 pm, 4 floors will wait for you with unbelievable prices, brands like GUESS, Armani, Patricia Pepe. The address is Via Appia Nuova 2.


#Saving
In the Penny Market chain spread throughout Italy prices are cheap. Even the supermarket chain commonly used, Coop, prices are not expensive.

If you came for some serious shopping, try getting to the big outlets outside the city, where you will find much cheaper prices.

Be careful of pickpockets in the city market.


#Tip
In Italian restaurants and cafés, there is no need to add tip to a check, since is already included in the price (servizio include).


#Entertainment
You will want to spend the evenings in Rome's entertainment district, the Trastevere district across the Tiber river.


#Interests
Interested in certain things? - Click on the tag "Interests".


#Italy Country Code
+39


#Shopping
See link below for recommendations.


#Entertainment and Clubs
To drink? - In the San Lorenzo district next to the university, you can enjoy along with some students, bars and clubs that are young and inexpensive. Marmo is one of the popular bars here and you can meet many local young people and students.
Piazzale del Verano 71.

Dancing? - The former workers' suburb, the Via del Pignetto, has recently become Rome's unofficial hipster stronghold. Apart from many restaurants, there are popular bars and concert halls. At the Fanfulla Club you will find good DJ's, great performances, in variety of styles - dance, rock, funk, and electronic music.
Via Fanfulla da Lodi, 5.


#Electric Outlets
Possible plugs to use are Type F and Type L (see link below with photos).


#A Taste of the Upcoming Trip? - Here's a video That Will Show you the City in All its Beauty:

https://youtu.be/y_4p6_KsqoE


#A Bit From the Local Kitchen:

https://youtu.be/c7TbpsRGCCI
Rome
Museo Delle Carrozze D'epoca
#About the Museum that Displays Historical Carriages

If you are looking for an light attraction in Rome, combining intriguing antiquities for both children and adults, this is the perfect museum.
Here you will find more than 300 antique carriages, decorated and stylized, collected here from all over Italy.

In addition to the wide variety of carriages, there are also weapons and other antiques. The toys from different periods are of special interest to children. They give a lot of pleasure and enjoyment to children and those young in their hearts –adults with a nostalgia for the toys of old.

Pay particular attention to the chariots in the museum that have appeared in the films, such as those used to film the movie Gladiator.



#A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/7XQojXljcFo
Jewish ghetto
Ghetto di Roma
#About the Jewish Ghetto in Rome

About thirty years after the establishment of the first Jewish ghetto in Venice in 1555, a ghetto was also established in Rome. Pope Paul IV sent a public letter at the time, in which he claimed that the Jews were the murderers of Jesus and that they should not be allowed to live as equal citizens in one city with the Catholics.

With the establishment of the ghetto in Rome, the Jews were ordered to leave their homes within a period of six months and concentrate within the closed, walled quarter that was then located in the southern part of the Field of Mars. This became the Jewish ghetto. Its gates were locked every night and it was impossible to enter and exit. Before entering the ghetto, the Jews were forced to sell their property and businesses to the Christians, at a price of about one-fifth of their real value.

It is important to understand that this area was not arbitrarily chosen. According to the principles of the Catholics, the Jews were not to be exterminated, but it was possible to impose on them extreme conditions of poverty and sanitation, and humiliation. Such was the location of the ghetto, on the banks of the Tiber, a poor place to live, which did not allow for proper living conditions. It was muddy and riddled with fever and floods. Sometimes the river would overflow and flood the whole neighborhood.

For 242 years, Rome's Jews were forced to live in the ghetto until Napoleon Bonaparte conquered Rome and the ghetto was temporarily abolished. The Jews had the hope that this was the end of life in the ghetto, but when the Pope returned to rule the city, the order was renewed and the Jews were returned to the ghetto of Rome. It was finally abolished only in 1870.

The original area of ​​the ghetto was more than 23,000 square meters. At the end of the 17th century, there were approximately 10,000 inhabitants, living in very close quarters. In 1823, the ghetto was expanded on its northern side.

To this day you can meet the elders of the quarter, who sit down and tell the stories they cannot forget. You will also find kosher restaurants, the Jewish Museum of Rome, the large and magnificent synagogue on the banks of the river and remains of the original ghetto displayed in art galleries.
Museums of the Vatican
Museums of the Vatican
#About the Museums

For centuries, the Popes living in the Vatican compound collected works of art and ancient and expensive objects. Due to their amazing Catholic collections, the world's most important museums - the Vatican Museums - were established in the 16th century. In these museums, one can find a variety of works from ancient Egypt, the Etruscan period, the period of ancient Rome and the Renaissance.

The first public museum of the Vatican opened in the Capitolina building. A collection of personal sculptures of Pope Sixtus IV was presented. It was also Sixtus who founded the Vatican Library. His grandson Julius II donated his collection of ancient marble statues to be placed in the sculpture garden. This is where it all began.

Today these museums are full of exhibits. Due to the incredible variety and quantity of items here, you will need to plan the tour in advance and decide what to see.



#What can be seen here?

In the Vatican Museums one may observe the Pope's private chapel and the place where the cardinals would select his heir - the Sistine Chapel (Cappella Sistina). Pay particular attention to the magnificent artwork on the ceiling of the chapel - a spectacular mural painted by Michelangelo depicting the creation of the world and the history of the human race. This is one of the masterpieces in Art history.

The gallery has 17-rooms (Pinacoteca Vaticana). It features religious paintings from various periods, dating back to the Gothic and Baroque periods. There is a gallery of carpets which describes the fascinating life of Jesus, woven between the years 1523-1534. Make sure to visit the four rooms devoted to the amazing works of the artist Raffaello Sanzio.

Take note of the Museo Pio Clementino Museum, which has 12 rooms with spectacular and nostalgic collections from the time of Greece to ancient Rome.


#A Close Look at the Vatican's Museums:

https://youtu.be/lKV2iNK0ehQ

Rome

Basilica of San Pietro
Basilica of San Pietro
#The Basilica of San Pietro or St. Pete

Hold tight. You stand at the doorstep of the largest church in the world and are about to see its magnificent treasures!

The Vatican Church, also known as the Basilica of San Pietro, is considered the most sacred church to the Catholics. It is so large that it can accommodate up to 60,000 worshipers at any given moment. It is located in Vatican City, the seat of the Pope. The Vatican, as we know, is a small country in itself.

The entrance is through the large and beautiful square, Piazza San Pietro. On both sides of the entrance are 288 huge columns designed by Bernini.

The church was built in the late Renaissance and Baroque styles and its large dome is one of the familiar symbols on the horizon of Rome. Beneath the dome is St. Peter, one of the apostles of Jesus, who spread Christianity in Rome and became the first Pope. Peter was executed and later buried here.

On the ceiling of the chapel you can see the "creation of man," Michelangelo's famous painting. Throughout the church you can see other amazing works - the works of young Raphael, the sculptures and the design of Bernini and other works that express the richness of the Vatican.

Do not miss the little balcony in the dome of the basilica. It is 120 meters high and in order to reach it it is necessary to combine an elevator and another 330 stairs.



#Construction of the basilica

The truth is that the construction of this church began in the fourth century, but it was rebuilt in the 16th century. In 1506, Pope Julius appointed Donato Bramante to rebuild the building that stood in front of the present basilica, the Basilica of Constantine. The new basilica was designed as a cross with four arms.

All the popes who came after him invested a great deal of resources in the emerging basilica: they spent large sums of money and brought artists like Raphael, Baldassare Peruzzi, Antonio de Sangallo, Bernini and Michelangelo (who designed the dome) to help complete its magnificent construction. Inside the dome is Michelangelo's famous Pieta statue.



#A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/WaVfR2m87Yo
Vatican Gardens
Vatican Gardens
#The Pope's Gardens

The beautiful Vatican Garden is spread out on 40,000 square meters of land, rich with vegetation of flower beds, trees, lawns, sculptures, fountains and pools. These gardens separate Vatican City from Rome and its surroundings.

Since 1279 the place has served as the resting place of the pope and therefore the Pope's private radio station and helipad are also located there.

When you enter as a visitor, along with the guided tour lasting about two hours, you go through about 2000 years of history.



#Tips

Please note that there is no entrance to the Vatican Garden without registering for a guided tour.



#A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/3O64u719OrU
Piazza del Popolo
Piazza del Popolo
#The People's Square in Rome

Piazza del Popolo, also known as the "People's Square", is a central spot in Rome. It is located near the Porta Flaminia, the entrance gate to Ancient Rome. This is the first peek that many visitors get of Rome. Today there are only remnants of the Arch and the name has been changed to "Popolo Gate," like the square where it stands.

This piazza is a significant part of historical events. It is not only the entrance to Ancient Rome. Speeches were given here and performances such as horse racing. Another famous event was the riderless horses, whose departure point was this square.

In the past, this piazza was also the site for executions, the last of which took place in 1826. Nowadays the square is open to pedestrians only and is a central meeting place in the city. You will see street performances and local and international artists. There have also been quite a few demonstrations here, such as those of 2010, as well as a few that got out of control. In the evening you can see the young people of Rome who come to see and be seen.



#Architecture of the Square and its Exhibits

In 1818 the architect Giuseppe Valadier was assigned to redesign the square. It is thanks to his genius that the square is as beautiful and impressive as it is today. His style was Neoclassical.

Over the years, various rulers have added more objects to the square to glorify their own names. One of them was the Egyptian Obelisk from the time of Ramses II (13th century BCE), which was placed in the center of the square, the Obelisco Flaminio and the second oldest obelisk in Rome, 24 meters high, and together with its base is no less than 36 meters high. Upon the obelisk are hieroglyphs describing the life and the time period of the king of Egypt. Water pools at the foot of the obelisk are made of marble and surrounded by marble lions made in the 19th century. Four small fountains surround it, and which have Egyptian characteristics to fit in with the obelisk.

The obelisk was brought to this square by the architect Ernesto Domenico Fontana in 1589, for the obelisk had previously stood in another square.

On both sides of the square you can see the beautiful water fountains, designed by Giovanni Sicherini in 1822-1823. In the square you can also see three impressive churches, among them the Church of Santa Maria del Popolo, "Maria of the People".
Gianicolo
Gianicolo
#About the Hill

In the western part of Rome lies Gianicolo Hill, formerly known as the Vatican Mountain. It is located along the banks of the Tiber River and on the right side, opposite the Aventine Hill. This hill is the second tallest in Rome and its highest point is on its northern end, which is 146 meters above sea level. From it, of course, you will see breathtaking panoramic views of the entire city. The length of the hill is 5 kilometers.

A pleasant stroll on the hill will include the lawns, many trees and plants, boulevards with famous head figures and spectacular vantage points.

One of the interesting points on the top of the hill is the church of San Pietro in Montorio, which is believed to have been built here, where St. Peter was crucified. The Aqua Paula Fountain can be seen as well, which is a Baroque fountain built on the orders of Pope Paul V.

One of the unique things you'll find in this park is puppeteers. Children can also find attractions such as riding ponies, bumper cars, a carousel and a puppet theater.

The recommendation is to visit this hill after a trip to the Vatican and complete the trip in the Trastevere district.



#History of Gianicolo Hill

During the Roman Empire the hill served as a sacred site for Janus, the God of beginnings and passages in Roman mythology. At that time, there were ritual rites, including the bird watching ceremony, which was meant to predict the future.

During the reign of Caesar Uralianus, the Aurelian Walls surrounded the seven hills of Rome as well as parts of the Gianicolo Hill. The entrance of the hill into the wall was intended to include the water mills that were on it and served as flour mills of the city.

In 1849 a battle was held on the hill between the forces of Giuseppe Garibaldi, the general, the patriot and the great Italian leader, and the French forces defending the Pope and his rule in Rome. Following the victory of Garibaldi, from Italy, Rome became the capital of the kingdom. On top of the hill you will still see a monument to the fallen in the struggle for Italian independence.

Ever since the year 1847, every day at 12:00, shots can be heard here from the castle of Sant'Angelo - to announce the time. In 1904 the custom was transferred to a cannon placed at the top of the hill. It lasted until 1939, when it was stopped at the outbreak of World War II. Following a public demand, the ancient ceremony was renewed and it takes place today at noon on the plaza in front of the main building.



#A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/Sg5z3xQIpIE?t=2m53s


Castel Sant'Angelo
Castel Sant'Angelo
#The Mausoleum

In the vicinity of the Vatican, on the banks of the Tiber River, stands a huge and majestic fortress - Castel Sant'angelo, meaning "Castle of the Holy Angel". It was originally built as a mausoleum by the royal emperor Hadrian and his family in 123. The mausoleum of Sant'Angelo was built over the walls of Rome and had quite a few underground passages leading directly to the Vatican. Hadrian later ordered the construction of the bridge leading from the city to the building.

Later, the burial structure as given the name Sant'Angelo along with the adjacent bridge. There are chilling stories regarding the terrible crowds on the bridge, people fell off and into the water below, and were killed.

After his death, as Emperor Hadrian had requested, his ashes, his wife's, and his adopted son's are buried in the treasury, the main room in the building. He was followed by other emperors, the last of whom was Caracalla, who was buried there in 217 AD.

In 1277 the fortress became a church property and a papal fortress. By connecting the fortress to the Vatican (to the Church of St. Peter) in a fortified passage, it was possible through a closed escape and thus served as a stronghold castle that managed to protect Rome and the Vatican during their many wars.

In 1688 Bernini upgraded the Sant'Angelo Bridge - he decorated the parapets with 12 statues of kings symbolizing the Passion of Christ.

Today you can see the National Museum of Museo Nazinale di Castel Sant'Angelo. It features sculptures, paintings and pottery. The weapon collection from the 15th to 19th centuries is particularly interesting, which certainly fits the theme of the fortress. During the summer months, lovely concerts are held here.



#The Flight of Pope Clement VII

The period following the appointment of Pope Clement was characterized by political unrest and instability in Italy, which influenced the messianic undertones(even among the Jewish community).

In 1527, a revolt took place within the Vatican due to the political intrigue caused by Pope Clement. That year, Cardinal Pompeo Colonna's troops occupied Rome and besieged the Vatican. Rome was already under attack and the smell of smoke had spread to many parts in the city. Clement realized that he had to flee for his life and so he began to urge is entourage. Carl V, the Holy Roman Emperor, arrived with his army of mercenaries to the gates of the Vatican and tried to assassinate him. Clement and his men began to escape through the secret passage that led to Castel Sant'Angelo. It is the very place where you are standing now. This secret passage, also known as Passetto (Fausto), was built in 1277. It was the fortress outside the Vatican walls. Clement had managed to reach the bridge, which had been rising in the last few seconds and had managed to shut himself up in the fortress.



#The Passetto's Uses

The secret passage from the Vatican into the fortress, the Passetto, was not only an escape route in moments of crisis and war. It was also a path where beautiful girls from Rome were snuck out to spend time with the Church's leaders when they were not working. The fourth floor was set up especially for these purposes. Today one can still see the erotic paintings on the walls and that are located on the walls of the floor.

Another attraction in this fortress is the conclave ceiling which creates an acoustic wonder: people can talk to each other without other people eavesdropping. It was an anti-wiretapping mechanism that was critical for the pope's court, where quite a few conspiracies took form.

This passage was neglected for years and no visitors were allowed. A little before the beginning of the 2000s renovations began and it was later opened to the general public. However, it is open only three weeks a year - from mid-August to early September, late in the evening.
An interesting detail about the transition: It is said that those who suffer from male impotence, should go through the passage 77 times in a row - 800 meters in each direction. Legend has it that whoever succeeds in finishing the entire course, over 61 kilometers, will regain his masculinity!
Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi
#The Four Rivers Fountain

The Fountain of Four Rivers, located at the center of Rome, was designed by one of the most important Baroque sculptors - Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini. This fountain was built as part of the design of the square where it is placed - Piazza Navona.

The fountain is made of unprocessed stone and incorporates several materials: marble, stone and water. In the center of the fountain stands a powerful obelisk, symbolizing the church's victory over paganism The fountain's pool has spectacular dolphin statues.

The four largest rivers in the world - the Nile (in Africa), the Danube (in Europe), the Ganges (in Asia) and Rio de la Plata (America) are part of the design of the fountain. Each of the gods in the fountain is shaped in an authentic style of the inhabitants from its continent. They sit on a rock from which one of the rivers flows. Each river represents a continent which the pope wishes to rule.

The message of the fountain of the four rivers is clear - Rome is the source from which all the rivers flow.
Santa Maria della pace
#About the Church

One of the Baroque masterpieces is the Church of Santa Maria delle Pace ("The Virgin Mary of Peace"). This church is one of the most important churches in Rome. It also demonstrates the Baroque architecture of that time.

The Church of Santa Maria delle Pace is located near Piazza Navona, in the Ponte district ("the bridge district"), which is a popular quarter of the city. Though built in the 15th century, it has undergone several improvements over the years, and that is what you see today.

The façade was designed by Pietro da Cortona, the artist and architect who was one of the prominent figures of the Italian baroque period. The most famous wing of the church is the interior courtyard designed by Donato Bramante. Occasional exhibitions are held in the yard.

There are several works of art from the 15th and 17th centuries in the church. Among them are the works of the artist da Cortona and another famous art by Raphael.

There is also a souvenir shop, a bookstore and a bistro, and there are concerts and exhibitions to be enjoyed.
Museo dell'Ara Pacis
#On the Museum Built in Honor of the Roman Altar

Museo dell'Ara Pacis sits on the banks of the Tiber River in Rome, and is the only modern building established in the ancient area of ​​Rome since 1938. It was inaugurated in 2006 and marked a new landmark in the architectural history of this city. The construction of the museum lasted about 10 years and caused many disputes and arguments.

Many people were critical of the American architect Richard Meyer, whose vision was to bring a new design to the city through a building combining white brick and turpentine together with steel and glass. The claims were unequivocal: "Not everything that is good for the suburbs of Los Angeles is suitable for Rome," claims art critic Vittorio Zaghrabi.

This impressive museum serves as a residence for the peace altar of Emperor Augustus, the Roman ruler whose victories brought the Roman Empire 200 years of calm and stability. The altar was built in 13 BC by the Roman Senate and if you examine it closely you will notice that it is covered with many reliefs.



#The Famous Altar

The Augustus peace altar, called "Ara Pacis Augustae", is a large altar covered with reliefs, founded by the Roman Senate in 13 BC. This large altar was meant to mark the return of peace to the Roman Empire, after Emperor Augustus was victorious in his many wars. The altar is preserved and this museum is dedicated only to him. The construction of the magnificent altar took approximately three and a half years and was finally inaugurated in 9 BCE.
The altar was built in the region of Rome, known as the "Field of Mars," on the occasion of the return of Emperor Augustus from his military expeditions in Galicia and Spain. In 17 BC Emperor Augustus embarked on a long battles outside Rome to deal with the problems of the empire with the western provinces of Gaul and Hispania. The Romans suffered from the rebellions of local tribes which harmed the Roman rule and resumed the obedience and payment of taxes to the empire and inhabiting these areas by the victorious Roman soldiers.

When this journey was completed and Augustus returned to Rome, the Roman Senate decided to honor the emperor by building this peace altar in his name, near the Via Flaminia - the path on which Augustus returned to Rome. Augustus himself, describing his own activities, relates that the Senate ordered that sacrifices be served on the altar on the anniversary of the he returned to Rome.

The significance of the establishment of the "Ara Pacis" should be understood against the background of the Augustus era and the propaganda that created it. In Augustus' time, worship was born to the Goddess Pax. It is linked to the governing ideal that developed during the Augustus period, the Pax Romana, the so-called "Roman peace." This idealist propaganda presented Augustus as Rome's savior and as the man responsible for the empire and the wealth of the empire. Thus, this propaganda linked the good of the emperor to the benefit of Rome. So too did they manage to convince the people that the worship of the Altar was a way of worshipping the Caesar and wishing him well.
Piazza Navona
#Rome's Special Square

Welcome to the most beautiful square in Rome! It is impressive and exciting and is located at the heart of the tourist area of ​​the Italian capital. The square was built by the architect Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini for the family of Pope Innocent X during the Renaissance. This square is considered to be one of the most well-known Baroque architectures in Rome. You will see lots of decorations and wealth that characterize baroque construction.

Originally, the square was supposed to be used for the city's athletic competitions. This is the reason for its elliptical shape. It was built on the ruins of the stadium of Domitianus from the first century. During ancient times it was used for horse races and is the only remnant of the nostalgic race track of the Romans.

Around the square there are beautiful Baroque palaces from the 17th century, the most famous of which is the church of Sant'Agnese in Agone.

Please note that the square is inviting and beautiful, but the prices of shops and restaurants are certainly high. Try to walk a little farther from the square and see how the prices gradually decrease.

Entrance to the square with vehicles is not permitted, unless you are traveling on a licensed vehicle. However, public transport will help you reach it and also travel to many places in the area, such as the Colosseum, the forum and more.



#What Can be Seen in Piazza Navona Square?

This piazza is bustling with tourists, mostly because of its many shops, restaurants, cafés and its fine ice cream parlors. It has spectacular fountains, such as the fountain of the four rivers of Bernini. In the southern corner of the square you can see the fountain of Moro, which was also built by architect Bernini, a very influential architect. The Neptune Fountain, designed in the 16th century, is located on the northern side of the square.

Take special notice of the tall obelisk, which came from Egypt at the command of one of the popes, to symbolize the triumph of Christianity over the Muslim world. The symbol of the pigeon you see, was commissioned by the Pamphili family from Bernini.

On weekends and in the evening you can see many artists and painters in Piazza Navona. The early morning is the ideal time to enjoy the piazza, as it is less crowded than during the day.
Campo de' Fiori
#The Market Square that Perpetuates the Sacrality of Science

Campo di Fiori is a rectangular square in Rome, a cultural and business center in the city. Located in the Christian part of Rome, it dates back to the Middle Ages. Today it contains a vibrant food market. This region is colorful and rich, full of fruits, vegetables, colorful pastas, organic honey, spices, cheeses and more. There are plenty of different stands here. Around the square are shopping streets with great prices and cafes, which offer mostly free wireless internet.

In the square is the Giordano Bruno monument, the scientist who preceded his time and the church which executed him for his ideas in relation to the location and importance of the Earth in the solar system. Note also the iron plaque next to the monument, which is intended to commemorate the books of the Talmud that were burned in this very square.

The name means "flower field" ("Fiori" in Italian is a flower). It is assumed that in the past there was an open field with beautiful blossoms and hence the origin of the name. If you inquire on the subject, you will also learn about a rumor that perhaps the square is named after Flora, Pompey's lover - it is unclear whether she was an existing woman or literary fiction.



#Campo di Fiori Square for Tourists

This is a spot for early risers in Rome. The square of Campo di Fiori has stand owners who arrive early in the morning to settle into their permanent spots. This is one of the points you will not want to miss if you come to Rome, at least once.

The first tourists arrive at 8:00. By 12:00 the place is bustling and full.. The afternoon will be the most calm time of day. However, do not be mistaken - the day is not yet over and at 20:00 the square will wake up again, this time for its night tour and will provide entertainment venues, varied bars and even a nightclub.



#History of the Square

Though today the square is inviting, full of attractions and colors, it was not always so. During the Roman Empire, the river would occasionally flood this square, along with other parts of the city. The area is dry for good only at the beginning of the first century CE. This was when the construction began in the area. Nevertheless, it was still relatively abandoned and served as an insignificant "flower field".

The real interest in the area began in the 15th century, when the the Popes wanted to use it to demonstrate their wealth and power. Pope Boniface arrived here to build the Church of Santa Brigida. Today, in its place, stands the French Embassy. Next came the third Pope, Calligraphy, who demanded that the square be paved. A few years later, palazzo della cancellaria and the Orsini family's palace were built.

In time the square became a local market. Horses and other products were sold and the crowds began to stroll through. However it was not used solely for trading. During the Inquisition, in the 16th and 17th centuries, the square was a central place for the execution of criminals and heretics. One of the most famous executions was by Giordano Bruno.



#Who was Giordano Bruno- A Man the Church Executed for his Astronomical Dreams

Many see it as the "martyr of science". The story of the Italian astronomer Giordano Bruno is a tragic story of a scientist who was ahead of his time and paid dearly for his theories and beliefs. It would only be later that generations would catch up with him.

Among the well-known, Bruno was considered "the first martyr of the world of science." In contrast to Copernicus, who said similar things and proved them mathematically, not many in the general public know Bruno's name, who preceded everyone in understanding the universe and our place in it - or simply - that the earth is not the center of the world and that the universe is infinite.

Bruno, from Naples, is the first cosmological theorist to sacrifice his life in the name of science. Bruno was executed for his "space dreams". It all began when he read a book by Lucretius, a Roman poet who wrote 1500 years ago that the universe is infinite. Bruno had dreamed of a universe where man and the earth took up very little space.

Bruno began to spread his ideas about the vast universe, where there are many more planets like ours. He came to the conclusion that the stars shining in the sky were actually suns very far away, which had their own stars around them. In the eyes of his contemporaries, who believe in the centrality of the earth in the universe, this was hallucinatory. All the different movements in the Church boycotted Bruno and his arguments and regarded him as a heretic. In England, where he traveled to lecture on his ideas, the scientists of the time scorned him. Not long after he returned to Italy, he was imprisoned because of his "foolish ideas." Giordano Bruno was tortured by the the Inquisition for eight years but refused to deny his ideas. It was to this end that Giordano Bruno was executed by the church.

Ten years after his death Galileo will first watch the telescope and join Bruno's ideas, which proved to be accurate. Gradually, the scientific world would come to similar conclusions and at a later stage, the church as well that the earth is far from being the center of the universe and that Bruno was right. Today there are universities named after him as well as research institutes.



#Tips

Visit the market as soon as possible. Beyond the brand new merchandise, the crowds are thin and the atmosphere is enormously pleasant. You can even start your day there and enjoy breakfast in the market.
San Luigi dei Francesi
#The French Church of Rome

It looks relatively modest on the outside, but very impressive inside - the National Church of France in Rome is the church of San Luigi de Francesi. It is located near Piazza Navona and the Pantheon and is dedicated to the Virgin Mary, St. Denis and the King of France, Louis IX, the patron saint of the Catholic Church.

In the church you can see statues and paintings of national heroes and saints such as Charlemagne, King Clovis, Saint Clelanda and more.

The church was built between 1518 and 1589. In 1527 the construction was put on hold due to a crisis in Rome, but it was eventually completed by the Queen of France Caterina de Medici and her generous financial aid.



#The Artwork in the Church

In the fifth chapel, also known as the Cappella Contarelli, you can see the three famous works of the painter Caravaggio, who was a prominent artist during the Renaissance Era. Despite his turbulent life and being the murderous painter of art history, Caravaggio, who in 1906 escaped from Rome after killing a man in a fight, left his artwork in the city and fled.

In the three works on the walls of the church painted between 1598 and 1601, you will learn about the life of Saint Matteo. Above the altar is the work "The Muse of St. Matthew" and on the wall you can see the "martyrdom of St. Matthew".

The works are characterized by many colors, detailed realism, a play between light and shadow which was innovative at the time. These artworks also created some resistance, for church leaders thought that the realism of the works indicated a lack of respect for religion.

Apart from Caravaggio, you can also see works by other artists: Cavalier d'Arpino and more.
A recommended continuation route from the church is a visit the famous square of Rome, Piazza Navona, the bustling square of the city.



#About Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, the Murderer Artist

Yes, he was a revolutionary artist, one of the most talented painters in history, a genius with an innovative and groundbreaking artistic conception and yet ... a murderer.

Caravaggio was a man of many components and faces. On the one hand he was a violent character,, a chronic drinker and drunk, who eventually murdered someone. However on the other hand, he was one of the greatest artists, a man of strong religious faith, whose paintings express an unprecedented emotion, a painter of incredibly precise details, whose groundbreaking art depicted biblical scenes and stories of Christian saints drawn in the form of ordinary people.

Caravaggio painted his paintings on large, impressive canvases. The church did not really like his paintings, especially the religious paintings. However, wealthy Italians loved and acquired his powerful and polished paintings, which showed a great deal of passion.

In his paintings "The Call to Matthew" and the "Crucifixion of St. Peter," one can see its prominent characteristics: sharp realism, games and contrasts of light and shadow, as well as the genius of using color and placing figures and objects in space. Caravaggio chose carefully what details to emphasize in the light in his paintings and unique models.

Although he died in 1610 and at the young age of 39 years old, his influence on the history of art is enormous. Not many painters have influenced, for so long, the art of painting. Many artists have been influenced by him, drawing Catholics from Utrecht in the Netherlands, who in the 17th century went to study in Rome and were known as "Caravagists of Utrecht", revered him along with the great masters such as Rubens, Vermeer, Velazquez and Rembrandt.

In 1606, at the height of his career in Rome, Caravaggio was involved in a fight and killed a man. He ran quickly to find a new patron in Naples and later in Malta. Two years later, he was thrown out of there as well because of his involvements in more fights. After Malta he moved to Sicily and his paintings, like his life, became gradually darker and more shadowed. His moods worsened, he used a swords to slash paintings that received negative feedback.

The researchers estimate that when he returned to Naples, he was apparently the victim of an attack that injured him and caused severe infections. He must have tried to return to Tuscany, in order to gain forgiveness for his crimes in Rome. It is not clear exactly when and where his life was abruptly put to an end.

It is not only the life story of the "killer painter" that caused great controversy and curiosity; his death was also a mystery. His turbulent character, evident in his paintings, often entangled him in fights, and in the end, perhaps led to his death.

Michelangelo Marizi de Caravaggio, named after his hometown in Italy, was considered the pioneer of the baroque style which developed in Europe in the period following his death. He was a genius who was ahead of his time and even hundreds of years after his death. He continued to influence great painters, but inside was a man who was haunted, violent, psychotic, perverse and complicated.



#A Closer Look:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4oGQlR293U
Santa Maria in Trastevere
#About the Church

One of the most ancient important churches in Rome is the Church of Santa Maria. The meaning of the name is "Saint Mary of Trastevere". It is located in the Trastevere district, built around the year 340 AD and was the first to have Christian religious ceremonies and open mass ceremonies held inside it.

The current structure was built in the 12th century. It had been destroyed and rebuilt several times before that time. Therefore, it is possible to see elements from different periods in this stunning building. The Popes invested in it quite a lot and transferred many art objects, such as columns from the baths of Caracalla.

The statue of Madonna and baby is in the Church on top of the tower, as well as Affresco drawings on the wall- these are impressive frescoes.

Pay particular attention to mosaics located in various places in the church. On the one side of the basilica there are mosaics from the 13th and 14th centuries, depicting Mary's life. There are those in Apsis during the years 1140 to 1143, and those on the top of the window under Apsis include " Scenes from the life of Mary" telling the story of the Holy Trinity by the painter Pietro Cavallini dating 1291.

Pay attention to the inscription on the "Bishop's Chair". This inscription indicates that this is the first church in Rome dedicated to Mary. However this fact is, historically wrong - the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, which was also dedicated to Maria, was established before this one...
Giolitti
#About the Pope's Ice Cream Parlor

Rome is flooded with great ice cream parlors, flavors and brands, making it difficult to choose a favorite- which also has to do with opinion! However there is one well known Ice cream parlor loved by locals and tourists alike - The Giolitti Ice cream parlor. Many say it as the best ice cream parlor in Rome.

The first branch of Giulitti's ice cream shop opened in 1900. It is rumored that some of the secretrecipes of the ice cream shop are kept by the owner in a safe. Regardless, it's an authentic and well-known place.

The ice cream parlor is so old and popular that it is said that even Pope John Paul II used to ask for Giolitti's chestnut ice cream. Even today quite a few celebrities and important people visit the ice cream parlor, including Michelle Obama, the wife of the president Obama, who requested ice cream from this very place.

If you want to taste one of the classic ice creams that have been served here since the 1920s, ask for this combination: chocolate ice cream, crispy zucchini pudding with whipped cream, hazelnuts and waffle rolls. All customers recommend the luxurious addition of whipped cream.



#About Rome's Ice Cream

In Italian, ice cream is called "gelato" and it has been here since ancient Rome, though the ice cream back then was slightly different. It was a kind of mixing of soft ice with noodles. Over the years the dish was improved, adding fine cream with from which rich and varied hand-made ice creams are produced here.

The Romans attribute so much respect to this dish, that they offer "authorized" ice cream shops, places which only deal with the preparation and production of ice cream. Note that the price here is determined by the amount of ice cream and not by the number of balls ordered.


Pantheon
#About the Temple of the Roman Gods

The Pantheon is one of the symbols of the Roman Empire, so popular, in fact, that it is always immediately associated with Rome. Pantheon means "all gods," since it was dedicated to the 12 Olympian gods.

The 16 Corinthian pillars were brought directly from Egypt and weigh no less than 60 tons each. They stand at the height of 12 meters and have a 1.5 meters diameter. These columns support the triangular roof of the structure, where an inscription explains how this building was built by Marcus Agrippa.

You will also see the graves of some Italian kings and that of the artist Raffaello Sanzio.

If you want to enhance the experience, come to Pantheon when it is raining. It is special to see the water entering through the holes in the ceiling before trickling down to the center of the building. In case you were wondering what happens to the water here, the floor is slanted in such a way that the water gathers quickly in the drainage holes. Another interesting point is that on April 21, when the sun rays hit the metal plate above the door, the entrance to the temple is quite a spectacular sight. .

Opposite the Pantheon stands the impressive Pantheon fountain, built by the architect Giacomo della Forte in 1575 and carved by Leonardo Sormani. Later on, pharaoh's obelisk to Egypt, dolphins and a new base were added.



#The Ceiling of the Pantheon

One of the most interesting things about the Pantheon is its amazing ceiling, which is constructed as a dome on the roof of the building. Its diameter is 43 meters and at its center you will see a skylight called Okulos. Through this opening, light showers down into the building creating a beautiful atmosphere. This is the only light source in the structure and its diameter is 8 meters.

This dome of the ceiling is the largest in the world without support. Do not take it for granted, as it was a rather challenging architectural feat. Due to the massive weight of the dome, and in order to avoid its collapsing, the Roman engineers tried to make it way as little as possible as they designed the ceiling to be higher. This was also the reason that the upper parts of the dome are made of lighter materials and have more internal spaces. Due to this interesting construction, the dome looks flatter from the outside than it really is.



#The Pantheon's History

The Pantheon was built in the year 27 AD following an order by Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa, commander of the Roman army and consul during the reign of Augustus. Following a fire that took place 60 years later, the building was completely burned down. It was rebuilt in 125 by Emperor Hadrian. The Pantheon was a temple, and in 609 it was converted to a church called Santa Maria Rotonda, though this was subsequently destroyed during the Middle Ages. It was the first time in history that a temple of idolatry became a Christian place of worship.



#What is the Pantheon? (Courtesy of Eureka.com)

The Pantheon in Rome is the most preserved building in the world, left over from the Roman period. It is the most ancient building in the world, still covered by its original ceiling and roof. This is one of the most impressive places in the city of Rome, a city with many fascinating archaeological sites.

Architecturally speaking, the Pantheon is a significant achievement in the ancient world, since every dome is made of concrete, made up of the soil of Pozzolana. It is the largest domed structure in the ancient world and is so strong that it has survived to this day.

The word "Pantheon" means "rule of the gods" in Greek. In various ancient mythologies, such as Sumerian and Greek, this word described a temple. And indeed, the ancient Roman structure that remains intact to this day was originally used as a temple for all the gods - Pantheon.

However the Romans later changed its use to the court of the emperor, a law court, and after Christianity took over, it became a Christian church called Santa Maria Rotunda. It must be admitted that this is an interesting use of a structure originally intended for idol worship and contained a number of altars dedicated to the many idols of the ancient world.

The date of the inauguration of the Pantheon as a gift to the Pope, by Emperor Phocas , is celebrated to this day in the Christian world as the "Halloween Night". Among those buried in the floor of the pantheon is the painter Raphael and the kings of Italy.



#Tips

There are guided tours of the Pantheon free of charge. There is no need to book a spot in advance.

The Pantheon is one of the most popular sites in Rome. Still, it is not very crowded here. If you want to see it in a pleasant way, it is best to arrive after 4 pm.



#A Closer Look:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rx6-sjKBTg
Villa Medici
#About the Magnificent Villa Above Rome

Villa Medici is a magnificent building, located on Pincian Hill, in a perfect location above Piazza di Spagna.

The Medici Villa is the location is the French Cultural Center and the French Academy. It is usually closed to the public, except for days of exhibitions and concerts, when the villa is open to visitors.

The interior of the villa faces the charming gardens of the building, gardens designed in the Renaissance style. The building is covered on this side with magnificent Renaissance carvings, which have been well preserved to this day. You can find the Obelisk walking through the well-tended gardens as well as charming fountains and neatly trimmed bushes typical of the Italian gardens.

Go inside the garden and see a charming Orangery building, a pavilion where you spend your time alone or at least peacefully. It is lined with wonderful frescoes with vivid descriptions of animals and birds. In the garden there is also a magnificent sculpture typical of the Italian gardens, where a nymph with her 12 children is attacked by animals sent after them by a jealous Hera.

The beautiful carvings and beautiful gardens make Villa Medici the most surprising and beautiful gem in Rome.



#A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/wB9ZaoViSRo
Piazza di Spagna
#About the Piazza with the Staircase

The Piazza di Spagna, built in the 18th century, is the square that became very popular to tourists thanks to the Spanish stairs that ascend to the Church of Trinita di Monti. These steps are by far the most popular meeting point for tourists arriving in Rome.

At the center of the square you will find the Fontana della Barcaccia. This fountain was designed by the renowned architect and sculptor Bernini in 1598. At the center of the fountain you will notice the statue of the little ship. The inspiration for the statue is from a real ship that got stuck in the Tiber river and could not move.

Around the Spanish square are some of the city's glittering and elegant streets. Are you interested in purchasing or window-shopping for some Prada or Gucci? - Head out into the surrounding streets, where Rome's most prestigious shops are located.

Among the houses surrounding square is the home of the poet John Keats, one of the most important romantic poets of England, who moved to Italy on the orders of his doctors after the English weather harmed his health. Today the house functions as a museum named after him.

Another attraction in the square is the 15th century palace of the talented Italian general Lorenzo Sibu. Among his ancestors were, among others, the rich Medici and two Popes.



#A Closer Look:

https://youtu.be/-3RN8NoOw8Q
The Spanish Steps
#About the Staircase

The Spanish Steps of Rome connect Piazza di Spagna and Piazza Trinità dei Monti. Try to count how many steps you take during climbing, as there are more than 100 steps here. many more. How many did you manage to count?

This staircase was built between 1723 and 1727 by the architect Francesco de Sanctis, financed by the French diplomat Stefano Gufierre. Ironically, French-sponsored stairs are called the Spanish Steps!

As you can imagine, at the time this construction cost a lot of money. The stairs connected the Spanish embassy to the church and the Vatican, so they were immediately called the Spanish Steps.

The Spanish square was once a residential center and a gathering spot of many European artists and writers. The well-known poet John Keats lived in a house near the square where he also died in 1821. His house became a museum in his memory.

Since we are mentioning the arts, perhaps you came across this staircase in the famous scene from the film "Holiday in Rome" (1953). The two heroes passed these steps in one of the scenes in the film. You must not miss this place!

At the bottom of the stairs you can see the "boat fountain" or the barcaccia - the old boat. This was built by the father of the famous artist Bernini. The theme of ​​the fountain came after the Tiber river flooded the entire area and the boat drifted up to this spot. Beautiful statues of biblical figures such as King David and Moses were placed around it.
Fontana Delle Tartarughe
Chiesa di Sant'Ignazio di Loyola
Museo Ebraico di Roma
Fontana Di Trevi
Isola Tiberina