Italy · Rome

Never again

This morning we took the tickets we bought a couple of months ago and skipped the queues to tour the Sistine Chapel and St Peter’s Basilica. But we’ll never do that again.

The paintings, frescos, the architecture, the sculptures and the interior of the basilica are magnificent. And I was particularly impressed by the School of Athens, maybe because it’s among the few artworks I can recognize, but the experience of the chapel itself was spoilt by the crowds, the discourtesy, and the continuous pushing and shoving. We were glad to leave. Looks like the Swiss Guardsman below was glad to see the back of us too.

After some excellent bruschetta for lunch–we had two kinds, one was the usual tomato and the other was black olive and garlic very finely chopped–we were back down in ancient Rome for a tour of the Colosseum, or, as we now know it’s proper name, the Theatre of Flavian. It’s a busy tourist spot too, but not as bad as the Vatican.

Tomorrow is our last full day in Rome before taking the train north to Bologna and we’re joining a walking tour of the old Jewish ghetto soon after breakfast. Letitia is looking up kosher bakeries as I’m writing this post for after the three-hour walk :-).

Heading out soon into the warm Roman evening to find some dinner.

2 thoughts on “Never again

  1. Sounds like you’re off to a good start. Lots of walking, but that should compensate for the pastry breaks.
    Yeah, that walk thru’ to the Sistine chapel is rather unpleasant. We were able to stop along the corridors to study the various maps and let the bursts of people go past to get a bit of elbow room, but the chapel itself even 20yrs ago was pretty crowded. Has probably only gotten worse.
    Enjoying the updates. Andiamo.


    1. We were able to stop here and there along the corridor too—it was the chapel itself that was the worst. And these days, more so than during your visit I expect, people just stop and take photos, or they’re walking along with their phones taking videos without even looking at what they’re ‘filming ‘, or taking selfies with their sticks. One easy and immediate improvement of the whole experience would be to ban cameras. Anyway, we’re just getting up to go to the railway station for the trip to Bologna—looking forward to both.


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