A castle and a palazzo

6 Aug

We had a busy and fun weekend. While some would cower in air-conditioned comfort, we headed out to experience more of Rome. The key is to go early, come home by noon-ish, then back out at night. There’s too much to do in Rome in the summer! You can’t curl up under the covers like LibbyJean!

Saturday we always go to Campo dei Fiori, a busy busy market almost any day of the week. We love the bustle and hustle, and access to the best salumi in all of Rome: Antica Norcineria Viola. Unfortunately now closed for ferie, so we have to make do with our stockpile until he returns in September.

Beautiful vegetables and the best salumi in Rome.

We also had our usual cappucino and pastry, this time con mele e crema, near Santa Maria della Pace.

Saturday night, after dinner at our favorite little trattoria, we ventured to Castel Sant’Angelo for Notti d’Estate (Summer Nights), and a special tour including the Passetto di Borgo (secret passage allowing the Pope to escape if the Vatican was sacked — and it was), prisons, and the bathroom of Clement VII.

Castel Sant’Angelo aglow, beckoning.

The English tour, for which we had reservations, was at 22:45. We were there by 22:00, looked around a bit, and then waited for our tour to be called. At 22:50 I asked “When will the English tour start?” Madam it has already left! We never heard or saw anyone claiming to be an English tour guide…. So we joined an Italian tour and vowed to return later this summer and pick up an English version so as to get all the details. Lucky for us, tours continue into September. And with the lovely nights we have in Rome, it will be a good excuse to stay out late once again.

We were able to climb to the ramparts and look down on the Tiber River, the crowd in front of the castle, and the gorgeous moon over Rome.

Playing with water: fun for kids of all ages. There are “nasone” and other little drinking fountains like this all over Rome. Ric demonstrates his technique. Block the flow with your finger creating a stream to drink from.

It really was a gorgeous night. The river was still and Rome glowed like it was lit by torches. That’s St. Peter’s Basilica on the right in the picture.

Bridge reflected in the Tiber; Basilica San Petro on the right.

Sunday we ventured out early to see a photo exhibit at the Museo di Roma in Palazzo Braschi. While the photos were great (Italian movie stars of the 40s, 50s and 60s), the star real was Palazzo Braschi

The art is interesting, but Palazzo Braschi is the star.

Featuring many scenes of Rome as painted during the Renaissance, it is fun to see how things looked to the artists of the time. Palazzo Braschi was the perfect stage for its collection.

The massive staircase was like an Escher painting.

This captivating capital crowns one of the many red granite pillars and is typical of the amazing detail in Palazzo Braschi.

Fabulous detail throughout, this captivating capital is typical.

Residents of Rome get a reduced price, and those residents over 65 with a Carta d’Identia get in free. (There are reductions  for residents at many attractions.) We had the place almost to ourselves. Once you have seen the Vatican Museums, the Capitoline, and the Borghese, it’s nice to avoid the huge crowds and escape to one of Rome’s many lesser-known sites.

You never know who you’ll see in a museum. We thought this papal bust looked like Vincent Price.

Palazzo Braschi exits right onto Piazza Navona.

Sunday afternoon we spent at home, and after sunset, a gelato outing capped the weekend. Perfect!

Have a great week everyone!

8 Responses to “A castle and a palazzo”

  1. Terah August 8, 2012 at 18:29 #

    My own little tour guide of Rome! Love spending time with you. Fabulous photography! Keep sharing.


  2. SBravenec August 7, 2012 at 23:23 #

    Thanks for sharing, Laurel! Seems like you and Ric are getting to do some really neat things. We remember the Castel Sant’Angelo and the wonderful sculptures on the bridge… and we look forward to more pictures and stories! Love from Seattle, Susan


    • gooddayrome August 8, 2012 at 05:28 #

      So nice to hear from you! One day you will visit and we will stroll that beutiful bridge together with the kids.


  3. Anita August 7, 2012 at 22:44 #

    Gorgeous pics, as usual. Love seeing them. The architecture is truly beautiful.

    So have you gotten a feel for how Romans view the current Olympics? Do they have it on TV all the time and are obsessed about it like here?


    • gooddayrome August 8, 2012 at 05:27 #

      Thanks Anita! Ric and I just got our European TV this week and don’t even have the cable working yet, so we aren’t seeing the Olympics! Very annoying! I can’t tell the personal level of obsession with the games, except to say everyone at works comes in buzzing about some aspect: a win, a disqualification, a record set! OF course the Italian papers reflect pride in Italian athlete’s successes/performances with cover photos every day.


  4. John August 7, 2012 at 01:16 #

    sembra che tu e Ric sta godendo la bella vita a Roma. C’è sicuramente un molto da vedere e avete il desiderio, presto diventare un cittadino di Roma! Hai avuto alcuni giorni caldi? Che ne dite di 106 e 103? Si potrebbe friggere un uovo … Tu, Ric e Kitty godere. John


  5. Carolyn August 6, 2012 at 16:10 #

    Good Morning from Portland! What a nice way to enjoy my first cup of coffee, looking and reading your post. All the pictures and narrative are so great and educational for me! Thank You!

    LibbyJean looks like she has living in Rome down just pat!

    After a Saturday in the 100’s and a Sunday in the 90’s, I’m looking forward to the temps dropping some around here. It will remain “summer” tho!

    Love ya, Carolyn



  1. Rain in Rome « gooddayrome - January 20, 2013

    […] are many delightful and under-appreciated sites. I wrote of one last summer, when we had Palazzo Braschi Museo di Roma almost to ourselves on a Sunday. I’ve sent many visitors there and received reports of how […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: