As you may have read in a previous post, I decided to visit Rome in its entirety this summer. This is the one goal I already started working on, since on Friday I indeed went to the capital. I woke up quite early to take the train at about 8:30am and I got to Termini (the main train station in Rome) at about 9:15am.
I then took the bus number 64 and let me tell you : never again. Yes, it is the one that takes you to the main sights in Rome, but it is also always full of people. I had to get off halfway to my destination because a creep was pretty much grinding himself behind me and I wanted to vomit. So if you are ever going to visit Rome, either go on foot or take some less trafficked buses. The underground works too, but there are a lot more people who pickpocket there.
I got off near Palazzo delle Esposizioni on Via Nazionale and walked all the way down. Fortunately, the weather was not too hot so I could walk slowly and not melt. I then reached Trajan’s Column.
After that, I went to Piazza Venezia, from where, if you go straight ahead you go on Via del Corso, the most famous street in Rome, but if you go to the left you reach Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, which is the street I went on. I had in mind visiting four churches, simply because of the art. I went to the first one, phone in hand for directions and taking pictures, Chiesa del Gesù, but it was closed. I did take a couple of pictures of the façade though.
I then went to another church, called Sant’Andrea della Valle. I, of course, forgot to take a picture of the façade, but the wikipedia page linked above should help you. It is massive inside. Literally huge and golden. The nave is immense and very imposing.
The one thing that amazed me the most was how much the outside noise was blocked. Blame it on the marble, but it felt like being in a different time, and as soon as you exited the church you got thrown back into reality.
On the left there is the Barberini Chapel, which had a gate in front of it. It also has a beautifully ornate dome.
Further down you can see the Rucellai Chapel, where the lighting was not as good, but the different marbles used are phenomenal.
Right next to it you can find the Chapel of Saint Sebastian, which is way more simple than the two before, with a very nice and delicate dome.
Still on the left side, there is the Chapel of Saint Cajetan. This does not have a dome, being an arm of the transept, but the marble used, pink in colour, is beautiful and despite not having a central window, the lighting was perfect.
Then we have the apse, where the main focus is on the Crucifixion of Sant’Andrea.
On the right we have the Chapel of the Madonna della Purità and I must say that the dome on this one is spectacular, I even posted the photo on Instagram.
Skipping a couple of chapels which did not astonish me as much, we have the Strozzi Chapel, which houses an imitation of Michelangelo’s Pietà and the dome is very similar to that of the Pantheon’s.
Next, we have the Ginnetti Chapel, which is made mostly of green marble, that was also included in the dome and gave the whole a sense of continuity. The main light does not come for the dome, but from a window below it.
Now, finally the Dome. This is the main dome of the church and it is wonderful. It mainly has warm tones and the design reminds me of a spiral. I love how you can barely see each and every painting, and if you really pay attention (and consult wikipedia) you can understand the story narrated.
And with this we see the end of part one of my morning in Rome. Part two will be slightly shorter, mainly because the second church I visited is much smaller and simpler than this one.
Thank you for reading.