Every city looks spectacular during the night.
|The colour of the lights in the Colosseo changed every five minutes.|
After a horrendous start to our day in Rome (you can read it here) we decided to make the most of what was left. It took a while to decide whether to go for the night tour or not. Finally we ignored what the books said and set out to explore the city at night.
Before leaving for Italy, we had been warned by hundreds of our acquaintances about the lack of safety in Italy. Everyone forbade us to venture at night and scared us with frightening anecdotes of burglary. Since it was our very first day in Italy, we were quite apprehensive. Amsterdam had been very safe but we felt ominosity lurking at every corner in Rome. On deserted streets, we would walk very fast to reach a manned area.
|The Santa Maria Maggiore Church|
There are special Night Tours of Rome which are conducted by tourist operators. The moment we set out foot outside, we knew why. All the architectural wonders looked magnificent at night. The mighty Colosseo or the Colosseum (in English) gets lit up in every possible colour. The light changes every five minutes. And talk about the vibe. These areas are pedestrian only streets (area pedonale) and you can see swarms of visitors! I mean it was twelve at night and tourists were moving as if it was six! And we were scared of theft and thugs! Talk about stupidity!
|The mighty colosseum at night|
We walked from our hotel to reach the square that had few very important architectural marvels. The Colosseum, the Roman Forum and the Constantine Arch. Being an Indian I find it silly to say that I had never seen so much crowd! Apart from the tourists, there were myriads of locals. Some were selling sovenirs, some were spray painting with loud music blaring while some were playing instruments for some quick money. Everything felt so nice in the middle of the night.
|Spray paint artists whipping up some really good Colosseum pictures in a jiffy; under the influence of blaring music! Notice the Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill in the backdrop!|
It was half past midnight when we decided to go back. We had a long day ahead (we had to cover what we had lost) and it was along way back to our hotel. There were police vans at many places but as soon as we crossed the touristy area, it was again deserted with sinister looking people keeping an eye upon us. I had my first Italian gelato that night. We reached our hotel safely.
|Ah those cobbled streets!|
If we overlook the fact that we slept through our sightseeing hours, it was quite a perfect evening.
|Arch of Constantine or Arco Di Constantino|
This Arch is a triumphal Arch which was erected by the Roman Senate to commemorate Constantine I's victory over Maxentius in the battle of Milvian Bridge in 312. Talk about Rome was not built in a day!!
|The Roman Forum|
|All over Italy there were these fountains that supplied drinking water. This is one of the best aspects about travelling in Italy. This fountain is right near the Metro station of Colosseum.|
|My first gelato in Italy! I had one everyday!|