Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Rome, day 3 - Castel Sant'Angelo

We were rewarded with our first view of the Vatican.

So we crossed the bridge (pausing for an arty shot, and also to note all the locks with people's names on them that were attached to the bridge).

We headed for the Castel Sant'Angelo.

This was yet another of Hadrian's buildings (AD 130, planned as his mausoleum or 'mole'; his ashes were buried here until the pope pinched the sarcophagus in the 12th century and it was destroyed by fire). Other emperors were also buried here, the last one being Caracalla in AD 217; then it became part of the city wall defences in 401.

We wandered round the museum (pics inside were forbidden and they were very strict, as well as being mid-restoration work - but we could take pics of the courtyards.

Some of the courtyards had lovely ceilings.

We stopped for lunch here (risotto) on a sunny terrace with a ceiling of vines. (Sophia Loren and Andrea Boccelli are among celebs served here.)

The window opposite our table had a rather nice view.

And then we went to the terrace with its 360-degree view of Rome. Glorious.

Allegedly the Archangel Michael appeared on top of the Castel in 590 when the plague ended – hence the Castel’s present name. The bronze statue on the top is by Peter Anton von Verschaffelt, from 1753.

We had planned to take the Metro back, but ended up walking back via the Campo de' Fiori (the name rather gives away the fact that it's a flower market), where we, um, stopped for ice cream.

And then we came back by the ruins of the holy area (and Pompey’s theatre) in the Largo di Torre Argentina.

Out for dinner (gnocchi and yet more pinot grigio) and then we went to see the Colosseum lit up.

Including with the moon (bad pic with slow speed and no flash, but it gives an impression).


KarenB said...

Thank you for sharing your fab pics of Rome. I went to Rome several years ago, unfortunately the Pope died the day before we left Venice for Rome. The grief within the city was almost tangible and made sightseeing an emotionally uncomfortable activity. I wish my memories of Rome were as fab as yours, but your pics have made me consider making a return visit.

Caroline said...

Lovely photo's once again KAte - thanks for sharing. Caroline x

Kate Hardy said...

Karen - hugs on your own memories of Rome. Do go back - it'll take away the bad memories and replace them with good ones.

Caroline - glad you're enjoying the pics!