We had a lazy morning today, waking up at 8 and staying in bed for a little while before making our way to Buddy for breakfast around 9.
Having eaten a huge breakfast we quickly picked up our things at the apartment and walked to the Vatican once again, this time wanting to visit the Vatican museums that had been closed on our first day in Rome.
This time around I came prepared: wearing long trousers and my jacket around my waist to cover my shoulders in the Sistine Chapel. Already around 10.30 am the sun was baking down on us as we made our way to the museum, but luckily the queue was in the shade, and so we could wait relatively comfortably for about an hour.
Inside we bought reduced tickets and audio guides and off we were to the first of many many rooms. And if this trip doesn’t qualify as a Grand Tour I really don’t know what will. We were talked through Egypt's ancient customs, (a lot of) Greek and Roman sculptures, Raffaello ’s paintings, and contemporary religious works of art by Picasso, Van Gogh, Salvador Dali, Marc Chagall and the like, before even reaching the Sistine chapel.
By then we were exhausted, both of us half ill from the hot rooms (with very little airconditioning), stressed out by the hoards of people and tired physically and mentally from one hour of waiting and three hours inside the museum. None the less the various exhibitions had been incredibly interesting and we were especially looking forward to the chapel. And man was it worth it. Even though the room was stuffed to it’s maximum capacity with people, it was an amazing experience. The ceiling frescos and the wall depicting the last judgment by Michelangelo were unbelievable to actually see in person while listening to the biblical stories behind them. Afterward, though we were ready to get out of the museum, and though the library was beautiful and the few rooms left were probably interesting we hurried outside with our sugar levels running low. We ate a late lunch at Duecento Gradi
before making our way back to Piazza Navona on the way getting ice cream, which we enjoyed by the fountain on the square.
On our way back we had tried to visit the modern art gallery inside the Santa Maria della Pace Monastery but the gallery was unfortunately temporarily closed. Instead we visited Palazzo Altemps, a beautiful palace just by Piazza Navona, though almost completely empty of people.
We were a bit drained after the Vatican museums though, so we ended up goofing around half the time,
while actually appreciating the Palace the other half of the time.
We didn’t quite know what to explore next, both not able to go to any more museums and the time being around 5 pm, so we decided to take the bus to Quartiere Coppedè, which was according to Google a hidden fairytale district. After having walked to the bus stop and stood in the overcrowded bus for a while to get there, we unfortunately could only find about four buildings and a fountain in the unique style, and although beautiful, it didn’t take long to explore it.
Not wanting to take the bus home right away, we bought a wine for a family friend in Florence and made our way to Dall’Albero, where we ordered the tasting platter of vegan cheeses they specialized in, not hungry enough for actual dinner.
I even bought a cheese that I could use for breakfast the next few mornings and we headed straight home, deciding that none of us were really hungry enough for dinner.
It wasn’t the relaxing evening I had imagined though, as Zuzanna had lost her wallet - most likely having gotten it stolen - and we spend the evening searching for it and calling the bank and her parents. It wasn’t the best start to her birthday the next day either, but at some point after having sorted everything out to the best of our abilities, we went to bed, having to wake up early the following morning.
Read on: Interrail Diaries day 14: Florence
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