I began my travel through this iconic city with on the most iconic places, not only in Rome, but also in the rest of the world. The Colosseum is right in the center of the city, which itself speaks greatly of its importance. Also known as the Flavius Amphitheater, it is the largest of its kind in the world. This monument is hailed as the epitome of Roman Architecture and engineering. This UNESCO World Heritage site, housed around 50,000 to 80,000 people in its time and was used for entertainment purposes in the early medieval era (remember Gladiator?) The monument is gigantic with four floors and each floor having around 80 arches each. Due to earthquakes much of the monument has been destroyed, but it still spills splendor and awe. If you think the Colosseum looks magnificent during the day, be ready to be blown away by its night view. The monument lights up the cityscape of Rome and looks like a jewel on the street!
After navigating through the museum, we finally reached the most important part of it, the Sistine Chapel. The wall on which the much-famed The Last Judgment, by Michelangelo, is painted looms out slightly over the viewer, and is meant to be somewhat fearful and to instill piety and respect for God's power. That piece inspires nothing but admiration. The artwork is astounding and nothing rivals it. But again, the crowd dampened the experience. But, this is where I'll explain to you, the perks of being five-feet tall. I walked right to the back of the room and blocked out the crowd. Once you focus on just piece of art, everything else fades away. It's almost like The Matrix, everything slows down. Concentrate enough and you feel like you're a part of Creation of Man.
Fiera Milano Rho
If you love art, culture and home design you must vivid Salone del Milano. The exhibition showcases the latest in furniture and design around the globe. Salone is held annually in April and so far I have been twice and every year my mind is completely blown away by the creativity and the variety of style.
A major portion of ancient Rome lies in deep slumber about 9 and 15 meters underground. With less scope of excavation in the deeper sections we have to rely on the catacombs, scavi, and crypts on religious sites to decipher the life in classical times. The famous Catacombs of Rome are the ancient burial places which are made of underground passages. The original Roman custom was cremation, after which the burnt remains were kept in a pot. But around the 2nd century AD, burial of unbound was being practiced. Christians also preferred burials. Wall graves were dug and were usually laid out vertically as it could contain one or more bodies. Another way was to have burial rooms containing graves all for one family. It gives you a chill when you descend into the realm of those dead and still dwelling here. Capuchin Crypt behind Piazza Barberini is where you can see the bones of thousand Capuchin monks. You’ll find skeletal remains of 3,700 bodies believed to be Capuchin friars buried by their order. There are six total rooms in the crypt. These would be the spooky highlights of your tour. The interesting history of the Basilica of Saint Clement makes it a key point to visit. Travel Trip- The Catacombs of St. Callixtus are closed on Wednesdays.
Pinacoteca Nazionale di Bologna
To see some of the most well preserved Baroque styles, don't miss heading to the National gallery. The collections started in 1796 and has kept growing. Artwork by the Carracci brothers, who were instrumental in bringing forth the Baroque style, are on display along with paintings by high-Baroque artist Guido Reni. The gallery covers a whole range of artwork, starting from the 13th century to upto the 18th century.For more information, get in touch here. Timings: Tuesday-Wednesday 9:00-13:30;Thursday-Sunday 14:00-19:00 Entry fee: €6Where to stay in Bologna?The best option is the city centre because of the tourist sites and restaurants nearby. Rooms in a good hotel start from approx Rs 5500 (78 euros).Where to eat in Bologna?Food in Bologna is special with so much on offer. When in Bologna, eat like the locals and indulge in fresh hand cut pasta, ragu, a ton of Mortadella and of course, copious amounts of gelato!
In Siena, head to the Pinacoteca Nazionale to see late Medieval and Renaissance paintings in its gallery. Duccio di Buoninsegna, Simone Martini and the Lorenzetti brothers were among the most important Sienese painters and their works were less naturalistic than Florentine art. See Duccio's Madonna dei Francescani which is a masterpiece as it shows different styles.For more information, get in touch here. Timings: Sun–Mon 9am–1pm; Tues–Sat 8:15am–7:15pm Entry fee: €4