The last trip I took during the fall semester was to Rome, Italy. Initially, Rome was not a place that I really wanted to visit. I was more interested in going to places like Prague, Amsterdam, and Budapest. But I figured that Rome was one of the places I should travel to since it’s one of the most famous cities in all of Europe and my friend really wanted to go. So I went with her; and by the end of the weekend, I was very glad that I did.
As an architecture student, I get excited by all the monuments and sites of older cities like Córdoba and Granada. I love exploring places that I’ve only read about in books or learned in class. It is much different when I get to experience a city or site in reality. I learn much more by physically being there. Rome was definitely a place that had this effect on me.
First off, the Colosseum was amazing. The size and structure was simply overwhelming. I never imagined that I would actually see it one day but the day that I did, I was blown away. The Colosseum thoroughly aged to the point where is a little bit difficult to see where things were. Moss covered several sections and some of the walls and supporting parts were missing. Nevertheless, it was a beautiful sight.
The Pantheon was smaller than I thought but the open circular space and oculus let in a lot of air and light. Moving through the building was easy but there was so much to see in every direction. The Roman forum and Palatine hill took a long time to explore. There were structures and sites on almost every part of the neighborhood. Obviously, a lot has decayed and disappeared but that’s what made the experience unique and valuable.
Lastly, Vatican City took us a whole day to see. The Sistine Chapel in the Vatican Museum is simply remarkable. An artwork that takes us a whole room is worthy of all praise and St. Peter’s Basilica itself was a memorable visit. As the center of the Catholic Church, the basilica lives up to its name and importance. The details, size and overall architecture were awe-inspiring. It still amazes me how people were able to construct such massive structures so many years ago. It all depended on pure craft and manpower. That, to me, is so unreal but awesome.
Ultimately, the Rome trip was everything I thought it would be and much more. I highly recommend that everyone plan a visit to this city at least once in their life!