The guy at the hotel recommended the Caio Roma bus so after breakfast we headed up to the Vatican and on the way were approached by a tour guide and purchased tickets for the hop-on hop-off as well as the colosseum. First stop was the Trevi Fountain which was covered in scaffolding. They kindly put a walkway over the empty pond so one could get close to the sculptures but it was a bit of a disappointment.
Next stop was the Spanish Steps. I have to say they need a hit with the K’Archer. Lachy sat at the bottom but Ali and I climbed to the top, fought off the Indian selfy-stick hawkers and took some snaps and then grabbed Lachy and headed back to the bus stop where we had to wait nearly 45 minutes for the next bus during which time a dozen buses from the other companies cruise past. We decide to go straight to the colloseum given the unreliability of the service.
We had to phone to find the meeting point for the tour and it was typical Italian chaos as the tourists were herded by the guides into language groups but eventually we set off. The first stop was Constatines patched together triumphal arch and then we entered the big arena. The guide was kinda funny making what he thought was amusing comments and waiting expectantly for a reaction which he mostly didn’t get. The structure is amazing and even in its ruinous state, it’s possible to imagine the grandeur of it in its day. I asked about the pattern of holes in the walls and it turns out they held metal clips which held on all the marble cladding which has been recycled over the years into other projects.
When we exited, I was expecting we would enter the Palatine Hill but for the extra 6 euro what we got was a running commentary from outside the fence which was fair enough for the money. We ended in the town square and headed straight for the bus which thankfully didn’t take too long, although it was a surprise to hear from the conductor that this was the last bus as we were told the service would run for another 90 minutes, not that you would see much in the dark. We headed back to St Peters with the intention of going inside but Lachy dug his rather sore heels in so a trattoria was found and the beast fed. The restaurant was staffed by Indians and the meal was Ok but the atmosphere was more Goa than Rome.
Back at the hotel we picked up the Vatican Museum tickets for tomorrow and headed to bed.
Movie not withstanding.
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