When in Rome
Whenever I’m in Italy, I take a tour with Enjoy Rome. I can’t praise this company enough. For 20-something euro (cheaper for students), you’re given a three-hour tour with a professional guide. We spent time at the Pantheon, Colosseum, Palatine Hill and more. Afterward, I spent extra time at my favorite place, the Forum, once the center of the world. You can see some pictures below.
I can’t imagine what this area must’ve looked like in the time of Cesar, with marble and bronze and color everywhere. After Rome fell and emperors turned into popes, leaders destroyed most of the Forum because it symbolized Rome’s pagan past. Plus, popes wanted building materials for their own temples. So, for centuries the Forum was forgotten. Floods raised the ground level, buildings were buried, and the area literally went to pasture, with farm animals being the only inhabitants. Eventually, the Church gained enough power that it wasn’t threatened by paganism, Rome regained it’s pride about the past and excavations began.