Sunday, July 14, 2013

Rome, The Forum and Palatine Hill

This morning we got up slowly and headed over to the train station to reserve seats on the first train to Interlaken tomorrow morning. There was a number system and man were they fast on the draw to skip you if you didn't sprint up to their window, and they didn't even try to look around before they did it staring at their computer screen the whole time.

Later we went to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, pretty much just a huge set of ruins and active archeological sites right next to the Coliseum. It was one of the first areas settled by the ancient Romans and it sits on a hill overlooking the Tiber River and at the time one of the major trading crossroads, which was mainly just a big swamp that some roads ran through. Here is a good shot of the two of us from the hill to the Coliseum.

There were lots of mounded rolling looking hills everywhere on the one side and after seeing this area I figure that most of that hill has some sort of ruin to hide under it...probably most of Rome included.

There were a few places where you could see where newer buildings had been constructed in the past on top of or including the bones of older ruins. The first one here being yet another church build on top of an older shrine or basilica, this one happened to be honoring Romulus, the founder of Rome.

After wandering around a bit more, we found a corner of the site that was unearthed by a project in 2009 that they think is the base/mechanism of the storied rotating dinner tower of Nero.

We also found this seagull that was standing on this stone railing and who didn't mind having his picture taken so we made a friend. Megan later found this awesome olive tree to make friends with as well.

It was Sunday and the Forum closes earlier than normal so we went back to our hotel and got ready for dinner. Weighing the nearby Italian restaurant vs the Ethiopian restaurant we decided on the Ethiopian place's really that good. Here are some more pictures of the ruins including one of how thick these brick walls were made.

Off to Interlaken in the morning and good by to this Italian heat, it has been fun but it's getting a bit old dripping sweat all day.

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