of Caracalla to the ornate splendor of Piazza Navona with works by the world's greatest Baroque
artist Gian Lorenzo Bernini, one can never tire of exploring every corner of this incredible city.
In ancient times Pompey, the rival of Julius Caesar, named the area around
his Theatre after his lover Flora; this name lives on today in the Campo dei
Fiori (or Field of Flowers). The buildings that envelop this piazza are a
breathtaking blend of terracotta and other earthly tones typical of Italy.
Apart from being aesthetically magnificent, Campo dei Fiori is also
very dear to the
Romans because the scientist Giordano Bruno was burnt at the stake here in
1600 for siding with Copernicus in declaring the world to be not
geocentric. Today he is a testament to liberty and free
speech to all who gaze upon his statue in the square. The Campo awakens at
dawn and goes to sleep in the early hours - never resting a moment. An early
morning visit will astound you by the hustle and bustle of one of Rome's
biggest open-air markets exploding with a myriad of colors, scents and the
sounds of the locals. Bright zucchini flowers, fresh porcini mushrooms and
aromatic truffles are just a few of the delicacies that can be found. By
night sample a prosecco or a full-bodied red as an 'aperitif' before
discovering one of the lively and traditional neighborhood restaurants.
Who could forget Anita Ekberg's famous frolic in 'La Dolce Vita'? This and
the recent success of 'Lizzie McGuire' has meant that the Trevi Fountain is
known and loved by all, both old and young. You too can come throw three
coins in the fountain to return, find love and later marry. Day and night
the roar of cascading water has a mesmerizing effect on us; it is not surprising that the
Trevi Fountain has become one of the most famous sites in Rome.
The harmonious and elegant nature belie the complex history of the Piazza
del Popolo and it's creation over many centuries. For pilgrims traveling to
Rome from the north this was their first impression of the city upon
entering the city walls. The piazza is dominated by the ancient Egyptian
obelisk erected by the Pope Sixtus V (a modern town planner in every sense)
and twin Baroque churches. Fans of the #1 best seller 'Angels and Demons' by
Dan Brown will enjoy a visit to the 15th century Church of Santa Maria del
Popolo, according to tradition built over the site of Nero's remains. In
addition to 'Raphael's earthy tomb' the church is a veritable treasure trove
with works by artists such as Annibale Carracci, Bernini and Caravaggio.
A single visit to Rome is never enough. You can go around the various
squares drinking coffee at each of the surrounding coffee shops, and
always come back to the one you left behind, wanting to enjoy it again.
The beauty, the history, the art, the people; a
lifetime would not suffice but one must start somewhere.....
If you want Flaminia
Chapman and Caitlin Miller to organize a tour for you when you are in Rome,