In terms of fashion and film, what could be more iconic than Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday”? When I was planning on what to wear during the last leg of my trip, all I wanted to do was channel the chic and timeless elegance of Princess Anne as portrayed by Audrey Hepburn in the 60’s. The weather was very hot in Rome, so wearing loose-fitting, A-line skirts as Ms. Hepburn wore was no problem for me. As the iconic Spanish Steps were shut down for restoration, I had to opt to channel Audrey on a nearby staircase…hopefully next time I visit I’ll get to have that full Roman Holiday moment!
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Photos by Wendy Jones
On our last day in Rome, we covered a lot of ground. Our first stop was the Vatican in Vatican City. Do you know that Vatican City is actually the smallest country in the world? Everywhere you look, you will find these guards that look like they’re dressed like Renaissance jesters.
One thing to definitely keep in mind when visiting the Vatican is that they are VERY strict with their dress code. As I mentioned before in my trip to Venice, some churches are a little more strict than others. Consider the Vatican to be the most strict, since it is the center point of the Catholic church. I can’t tell you how many people we waited in line with that were dressed in shorts and tank tops only to be turned away later when they finally got to the church doors. Do not make this mistake, because they will turn away any man or woman who is not properly covered up. I made sure to carry a small jacket in my purse to cover up when the time came to enter the church. Even a scarf thrown over your shoulders will suffice, just make sure you come prepared.
The Vatican is an incredibly grand and intricate church, but to be honest, it was not my favorite that I saw throughout my travels. That being said, I couldn’t help but be in awe of how massive this basilica was.
While in Vatican City, you must check out the Vatican Museum. This is where you will find the Sistene Chapel which is such an incredible work of art in itself. Unfortunately, they don’t allow photos inside the Sistene Chapel, so here are some photos of other ceilings in the Vatican Museum.
One thing I with I would have done was buy tickets to skip the line for the Sistene Chapel while I was at the Vatican. When you exit St. Peter’s Basilica, there is a booth on your right hand side where you can buy these tickets. I made the mistake of not doing that and subsequently waited in line for 2 hours to get into the Vatican Museum. Do yourself a favor and learn from my mistake! Buy those tickets in advance!
One place that I really looked forward to visiting was the Pantheon. This was once a temple during ancient Rome in 27 BC, destroyed by fire years later, than rebuilt by the emperor Hadrian in 80 AD. The Catholic church commandeered it in later years, but it is still incredible to walk inside this structure…it is definitely the oldest building I have ever been inside!
After checking out the Pantheon, I highly recommend grabbing some antipasti and an Aperol Spritz or two at a cafe in the piazza. If you have never had an Aperol Spritz, you definitely have to try one while in Rome. They consist of prosecco, Aperol, and soda water, and are so delicious and refreshing. Try having just one! 😉
These are the Spanish Steps I was talking about earlier, made immortal through the film “Roman Holiday.” You can find these in Rome’s most upscale neighborhood where you will find the best designer shopping in the city, along with all kinds of luxury restaurants and hotels. Even though the steps were closed, we managed to accidentally stumble upon a rooftop bar right along side them that gave us a great view of the steps and the streets below.
When in doubt, order more Aperol Spritz’s!
This brings my European travel posts to an end. I hope you enjoyed reliving my trip as much as I did, I can’t wait till my next overseas adventure!