When In Rome… Visit the Colosseum

My favorite view of the Colosseum
House Interior, Palatine Hill

I got up early to meet my mom at the airport. Neither of us having a phone, we decided to meet at arrivals. And if we didn’t find each other we would meet at the Alitalia check-in desk.  I got to the airport about 10 minutes after her flight was due in, to find out that her flight landed early. I found the terminal that her flight came in on and waited. And waited. I couldn’t find her. I went upstairs to the check-in desks, but the Rome airport is not setup by airlines. Each flight is assigned a desk number so there was no way we could meet at an Alitalia check-in desk. I made about 4 trips back and forth between arrivals and the check-in area. Finally, after about 45 minutes, my mom spotted me at arrivals. What a relief! It had taken her a long time to get her bags. We took the subway into town and checked in at our bed & breakfast. It was a quaint place run by a lovely woman (i.e. the one that helped us find a hospital).  You’ll be able to read more about it once I post about my Italy accommodations.

So much to see!

My mom and I decided to spend the afternoon at the Colosseum. It is a combined ticket that also includes the Roman Forum & Palatine Hill. Here is a travel tip for the Colosseum: Don’t wait an hour in line there to get your ticket. Instead, start across the street at the Roman Forum & Palatine Hill, where you can usually walk right up to the counter and buy your ticket.

inside colosseum
Inside the Colosseum

The Roman Forum & Palatine Hill took much longer than we thought. There were so many ruins! Palatine is described in Lonely Planet as ‘ancient Rome’s Beverly Hills’. It’s the site where Romulus killed his brother Remus and founded Rome in 753 BC. The Roman Forum, right next door, was a covered market, civic centre, and religious complex. Short on time, we darted over to the Colosseum. It was actually a bit smaller than I thought it would be, but really fun to imagine what great things once took place on the site. We stopped for a photo-op when a gust of wind came through and blew my map over the edge. Noooooooooooooo. This freebie tourist map that all the hotels hand out had been labeled and highlighted laboriously by moi. I had meticulously marked every place I hoped to go, including some lesser known spots. I cringed, as I looked over the brick wall to see my map in an area not accessible to patrons. Bummer. As we were leaving the Colosseum there was a huge rally going on for a presidential candidate. We darted in and out of Italian flags as we walked back to the hotel. Early to bed and early to rise for the Rome Marathon!

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