Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Our last weekend in Italy, we visited Rome. We went on what has been fondly termed, in previous years, "Ashley's Death March."

Friday: We only had a couple hours after arriving in Rome to get dinner and see the Trevi Fountain at night. And here it is!


 Saturday: We were up early for our trip to the Vatican where we saw the famous Sistine Chapel and St. Paul's Cathedral. No sightings of the Pope, though!

Here is the Sistine Chapel. The ceiling, of course, was painted by Michelangelo, while the sides of the chapel (which are often overlooked) were painted by various famous painters such as Botticelli, Rosselli, and Perugino. The back wall, which you can't see in the picture below, was also painted by Michelangelo, about 30 years later (give or take a few). Until the ceiling was restored, it was believed that Michelangelo used dark colors in his paintings. But after restoration, Michelangelo's bright colors were revealed.

And here is the outside of St. Paul's Cathedral.

Later that day we walked past the monument to Victor Emmanuel II (dubbed the "Wedding Cake" by many Romans) which includes Rome's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

And here is Trajan's Column--the carvings on which tell the story of Rome's victory over the Dacians.

And here is the Colosseum at night.

On Sunday we visited the Pantheon.

And the Colosseum again (this time during the day and we went inside). The area with the sand is where the original floor of the Colosseum would have been--the sand was used to soak up the blood.

And here are a couple members of my study abroad group who brought their own Gladiator armor into the Colosseum just to re-enact the Gladiator fights from ancient Rome.

And that ended our study abroad trip to Italy.

However, since this is my last post, I just want to point out one more thing. If you decide to study abroad in Europe (or any country) just remember that once you're there, other countries are a lot closer. Just because the study abroad trip ends doesn't mean you have to go home. If you want, you can visit a few more countries that you've always wanted to see. After this trip ended, I stayed in Rome a few extra days and then I went  to London for a week--another place I've always dreamed of seeing. I had an amazing time on this study abroad trip and am so thankful that I got to go! So if you are considering studying abroad, whether for a summer or a semester, I cannot recommend it highly enough. Go! You won't regret it.

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