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Rome, Day 2, Part 2

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Pantheon

The second half of our second day involved several things we hadn't yet experienced: crowds, lines and closed churches.

We began our afternoon adventure with a cab ride to the Pantheon. Deedie had never visited, and it fit neatly into our schedule. Given the relatively low numbers of tourists we have encountered, we were a bit taken aback by the crowds near the Pantheon, and the long line of people waiting to get in:
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What to do. Gelato, of course!
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Then, we decided we would check out some of the other churches in the area. The Minerva church-- closed. The Ivo church-- closed (but see our shadows at the gate):
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As we wandered toward the Piazza Navona, we found the Sant 'Eustachio church open and spent a few minutes checking it out. Then it was on to the Piazza, which was delightful:
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Intrigued by the description of a secret "medieval square" near the Campo di Fiori (found in the Rome tourbook from Lonely Planet), we headed in that direction next. When Joe, the kids and I stayed in Rome in 2008, we rented an apartment near the Campo, so it was nice to visit it once again. It took a bit of focus, but we finally tracked down the medieval square:
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On our way back to the Pantheon (hoping that the crowds would be smaller later in the day), we visited the Basilica di Santa Andrea Della Valle, which was a nice surprise. The first surprising thing was to encounter a friendly, welcoming greeter at the door and then to find a church with lovely light and a good place to sit down and rest.

Arriving back at the Pantheon, we found the line just about as long as it was earlier, but it seemed to be moving well. Jenny and Deedie stuck with the line and finally got in (I found a nice place to sit on the wall).

Our next project: dinner. The hotel hadn't been able to secure reservations at a restaurant near the Pantheon, so we were on our own. Our main goal was to find something that wouldn't take too long, since the next day involved a very early wake up and tour. After some debate, we wandered back to the little piazza near Sant' Eustachio and found a nice restaurant with outdoor seating.
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Then, it was back to the hotel and off to bed! Ciao!

Posted by ReisAdventures 14:09 Archived in Italy

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