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Aug 1, 2012

Rome in a Day: The Vatican & St. Peter's Basilica

Ok, so I lie. We did do Rome in one day...but it's obviously going to take me more than one post to show you all the wonderful things we did and saw. Rome in a word was AWESOME. Hands down my favorite part of the Italian portion of our family vacation. Something about seeing things like the Colosseum and the Sistine Chapel with my own two eyes, things I'd only every read about in history books, made me giddy to my core. Not to mention we had a private bus and a private tour guide showing us around the city...so I felt carefree and could really enjoy all the sights we were seeing. I only wish we had more time to spend there. After all, Rome really wasn't built in a day.

We started out our day in Rome with finding our tour guide, Grazia, and the nice air-conditioned private bus she'd reserved for our traveling family. We saw Rome with ease and comfort, not to mention Grazia was wonderful. She's a native of Rome and has been a tour guide for over 12 years...so girl knows her stuff. She showed us things that day that I never even knew existed, but was so happy to be introduced to. She also was a little Italian fireball! Grazia sweet talked her way into buildings, through Roma traffic (traffic there is horrifying!), and let a few Italian men know who was boss as they got in her way. She also kept the gypsies away. Yep, the gypsies. They tried to steal our tears, but Grazie wouldn't let them. ;)

First on the agenda was a tour through the Vatican. The lines were awful, but thanks to Grazia, we slipped right in. It was hot and crowded and we pushed our way through a lot of the museum, but what we saw was nothing short of awe-inspiring. I should really have called this post "Rome, the city of fabulous ceilings" because I swear, the majority of my pictures from this day are of ceilings. Rome's got some good ones.

 See what I mean? Ornate ceilings galore. Here's another ceiling you all might recognize. Lindsay and I did sneaky illegal things to get these photos. You're welcome.

Believe me, everyone in that room was snapping photos. Usually the chapel guards will smack the cameras out of your hands and yell at you for taking pictures, but there were so many people in there that day, scolding the tourists was pointless. Thank goodness, because I was going to get a photo whether they slapped my hand or not!
 Now, on to St. Peter's Basilica!

St. Peter's was stunning...and HUGE! I've never seen a church this large and commanding. From what I can remember from Grazia's excellent tour, St. Peter's has the largest interior of any Christian church in the world. I'd have to say it also has one of the most beautiful alters. At least it does in my opinion.

If we had the time, I would have loved to climb up to the top of St. Peter's dome to see Rome from above, but sadly we were on a tight schedule. On the agenda for the rest of the day was lunch in Piazza Navona, a tour of the architectural wonder known as the Pantheon, a visit to the Trevi Fountain to drop in a few coins, and of course, the Colosseum and Roman Forum. It was a whirlwind day to say the least! 
Stay tuned!


  1. I'm glad you loved Roma! It's my favorite city in Italy, and possibly my favorite city I've ever been to! I've been twice & cannot wait to go back again! :)

  2. Wow, gorgeous! Italy is at the top of my list to see in Europe!

  3. You did ALL THAT in a day?! Whoa, girl. That's INTENSE.

    I went to Rome back in June and was there for four days and thought that wasn't enough time! (Although - my feet told me it was plenty:)

    So nice to see some more photos of such a wonderful and inspiring place :)

  4. This looks amazing! I want to go to Italy so badly!! Newest follower. Thanks for linking up! Hope to see you next week!

    Wonderful Wednesday Co-Host

  5. So beautiful!! I want it to be October NOW so I can see it with my own eyes!

  6. Love your photos! What camera/lens do you use? Glad you had fun in Roma!

  7. Your photos brought back such good memories! I was in Italy with my family in 2007, right after I graduated from college, and it's funny how similar some of our shots are -- like the ornate gold ceiling walking through the Vatican. :) Such a beautiful place! It's hard to believe it's all real.

  8. WOW!!! Those Sistine Chapel pics are amazing...thanks for being a rebel and snapping them up! I hope to visit there one day....what an experience!!
    Giveaway @ Because Shanna Said So

  9. i loved rome too when i went there :) fabulous pictures girl! what a great experience for you! just wanted to say super cute blog! you should check out the giveaway im having over at my blog! it ends friday! xo

  10. Hi Casey! I'm stopping by from Raising Rainbows - love your gorgeous pictures of Rome! I dream of going there someday :)

  11. Love, love, love the ceiling pictures...I would have stared all day long and not moved! So beautiful. I have to make it there...one day! till then, I'll just live through your travels and pictures, ok?

  12. Jealousy ensues!!! When my father went their to visit our relatives a decade ago, two women (a mother & her daughter) tried to mug him by leaning up against him & picking his pockets. He's a very...strong man so he wasn't letting anyone near anything. But I could hardly believe it so reading your story doesn't surprise me. I'm glad you stayed safe :) Those ceilings are BREATHTAKING!

  13. I still remember what it was like to visit the Vatican. I did Rome in '1 day' and was physically wrecked by the experience.

    I didn't have a fancy tour guide so had to queue jump and pretend I was foreign when people tried to stop me. It worked....

    Thanks for joining the Gerglish Bloggers facebook group.



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