Rome Travel Guide - with Wired Destinations
Discount Hotels in Rome : Fontana di Trevi, Piazza Cavour, Piazza di Spagna, Piazza Navona, Piazza Venezia, Piazza Vittorio Emanuele, Vatican City area, Via Aurelia, Via Cavour, Via Veneto, Termini Railway Station Area, Nomentana, Other Central Hotel, Airport
"While in Rome...", on the way to the forum, stop for a moment and consider grandeur and scale of the ancient city. The stone and marble of these colossal buildings, the architectural engineering, the period relative to world events, and then try to imagine the level of achievement this represents without aid of modern machines and equipment. At the time, emperors forced slaves amassed from the empire's vast territorial conquests to create these magnificent structures aided simply by crude leverage devices, block and tackle, and backbreaking effort.
Despite the less than humane method of construction, Rome was revered as a sparkling testament to man's ingenuity and creativity. Following the fall of the Roman Empire in the 6th century, the illustrious city lost much of its former prestige. Rome languished for the next several hundred years until the Italian Renaissance once again placed the city in the limelight.
Other impressive buildings, cathedrals and monuments were added to the legendary city during this period. Since becoming capital of a newly united Italy in 1871, Rome has scarcely looked back and has forged ahead with an ever-increasing zeal for expansion. Today, Rome is the vibrant historical city known and loved the world over.
The modern Rome of international trade and commerce surrounds the cultural riches of ancient Rome, providing a striking contrast between old and new. The splendour of Rome however, lies not just in the plethora of ruins, fountains, churches, museums and monuments but also in the warm and generous spirit of a city alive with colour and vitality. Sidewalk cafes, boutiques and restaurants crowd the sidewalks where every nationality imaginable comes to bask in the sunshine of the Eternal City. Rome is without doubt, as alluring today as was 1500 years ago.
Most of Italy is slipped into the big boot-shaped peninsula jutting into the Mediterranean Sea from the south of Europe. At the tip of the boot is the Italian island of Sicily. Sardinia, the other large Italian island, floats on the western edge of the Tyrrhenian Sea. In the north, the mighty Alps stretch from France across Switzerland and Austria to Slovenia. Forming the backbone of the Italian peninsula is the Apennines range. A coastline bounded by five different seas suggests countless bays, gulfs, inlets and natural harbours. Of the fiery Italian temperament prone to explosive display, one might consider the volcanic proximity of Vesuvius, Etna and Isloa Stromboli of having an influential effect.
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"We have created Italy, now we must create Italians," said Massimo D'Azeglio, a major force behind the unification of Italy in the mid-19th century. At times, Italy appears a mosaic of regional differences stitched together for the sake of some semblance of a cohesive whole. In the somnolent south, Italians entrenched in traditional ways cast disparaging glances to the north. They are content with their life, their harvest and the sunny skies shinning down on a big blue sea. The cosmopolitan northerners zipping along in their trendy lifestyles chuckle over cappuccino at the expense of their drowsy southern brethren. The Holy See or the Vatican is the independent state and headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church. A pillar of all that is virtuous, yet dwelling in the same country as the notorious homeland of the Sicilian mafia, birthplace of an international web of organized crime. The roots of the Roman Empire stand in ruins side by side with architectural marvels housing many of the world's treasured masterpieces. A leisurely evening stroll around the town is as popular today as ever, for both rural and urban Italians, a contrast to be sure, with the sight of a Ferrari roaring past in a blurred flaming red streak. Flamboyant fashion idols strut and pose behind dark sunglasses while plump ruddy faced farmwomen grin and chortle behind mounds of fresh produce. Italy may well be a country of contrasts, but for the visitor, this very quality can only serve to enhance the Italy travel experience.