Italy Trip '02: Page 1

In May/June of 2002, we took Trafalgar's "Grand Tour of Italy" 18 day bus tour. We covereed Italy from bottom to top, 12 hotels in 17 nights, and saw an amazing number of sights.

 

The first evening in Rome, we took a night tour including this spectacular time exposure from Capitoline Hill.

 Here is the Vatican Museum and to the right is the altar wall and ceiling of the Sistine chapel painted by Michelangelo. This is where the Pope is elected.

 

 

One of the incredible mosaics at St. Peter's.

 

Michelangelo's Pieta, carved when he was 22 years old.

St. Peter's square; the Pope's window is the second from the far upper right.

 

We were unable to go inside the Coloseum due to a strike but the outside was spectacular.

The Arch of Constantine the France copied.

 

The famous Trevi fountain where a wish for a return to Rome or a divorce depends on the number of coins thrown.

 We stayed in Manfredonia, then headed south to Alberobello, famous for the stone circular roofed homes called Trullis. Originally they were invented to trick the real estate tax assessor, being quickly knocked down and rebuilt. We were able to visit one and they are now very comfortable with curved white plaster walls.

 

From there we continued south to Lecce in the "heel", settled originally by the Greeks in 700 BC. Many Roman era buildings remain but the baroque Basilica of Santa Croce was beautiful. Inside was a detailed recreation of the church facade in knotted straw and a number of beautiful stone-like statues made of paper mache!

 

 

 

From Lecce, we retraced our steps north and west, arriving for a two night stay in Sorrento. From there we visited Pompei and the island of Capri.

I had no idea how big Pompei was. Buried by ash from Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, there have been over 1000 buildings unearthed.

 

 

 

 The structure on the left was a cafeteria counter for selling food items to the public.

 

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