Departure by departure, sightseeing by sightseeing, but on vacation you also need to relax :) This was the motto of our next day in Rome.
On our fifth day in Rome, we were already so exhausted from our sightseeing (“toe heel”) that we slowed down a bit…. albeit continuing to explore on foot. We started with the Vatican….
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Audience with the Pope
It turned out that there was to be an audience with the Pope during our stay. Initially we heard about the Paul VI Auditorium, but in the end it turned out that it would be held in St. Peter’s Square. Peter. Despite the passes we received from the Swiss Guard Soldier, we were unable to get into the numbered seats. Nevertheless, we had a pretty good view and, importantly in such hot weather, shaded :)
Cheering crowds, a mix of nationalities and cultures – this met us at the entrance to the Square by the Basilica. There are plenty of stalls around selling souvenirs and various gadgets with the Pope. After some 15 minutes, the Pope drove among the crowds and arrived at the place from which he began the prayer. The euphoria and applause among the pilgrims was truly impressive. There were telebims set up in the square to watch the Pope. The faithful in St. Peter’s Square itself were of course many, many…
You can read about our earlier visit to the Vatican here.
Basilica of Our Lady of the Snows
Then picking up the bus and moving further on foot, we wanted to visit the Karakalli Thermae. However, it turned out that they were closed that day (May 1 is also a holiday in Italy, so we returned there two days later). So, after a moment’s rest, we hiked through Piazza di Porta San Giovanni to the Basilica of Our Lady of the Snows, also known as the Basilica of Our Lady Major or Our Lady at the Manger.
In the Piazza San Giovanni itself, there is a St. Basilica. St. John Lateran, under which a concert was just taking place that day…. on the occasion of May 1 :) Also here, at one of the souvenir stands there was no lack of Polish accents:
By far the coolest, prettiest and best part of the day was visiting the Basilica of Our Lady of the Snows. This inconspicuous “church” located near Termini Station simply takes your breath away :)
It is often not mentioned in guidebooks as a Top 10 in Rome and probably many people and tours miss this basilica. We can wholeheartedly recommend it to you and if you are going to Rome you will not regret when you spend an extra hour on this monument. Description by… see for yourself:
Other basilicas in Rome
A little farther away, on the other side of Termini Station, in Piazza della Repubblica, is the Basilica of Our Lady of Angels and Martyrs. The temple is equally worth seeing. An interesting fact is that it was built on the ruins of Diocletian’s Thermae. Also worth noting is the interesting courtyard located at the back of the basilica.
Then from Piazza Repubblica (on foot, of course) we went to the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul. St. Peter’s in Fetters…
Sam St. Basilica. St. Peter in Fetters is not impressive. It does, however, contain the chains in which St. Peter was to be shackled. Peter. and the mausoleum of Pope Julius II, which includes a monumental statue of Moses by Michelangelo. For these two things, it’s worth turning off the trail for a few minutes. Especially since the basilica is located near the Colosseum.
Happy ending :)
For a lazy day, there was quite a bit of it. We have to admit that, despite everything, we felt positively surprised. This confirms the thesis that it is not always (under time pressure) worth focusing only on top attractions.
At the end of the day, as standard, we went for Italian delicious ice cream along the beautiful Roman streets….
And the next day we gave up hiking…. In favor of… four wheels, which we picked up from the airport in the evening…. (yes, at the airport the rental is cheaper than in the city, even adding the drive to the airport).
And where did we go? See Pompeii:)