A Place I Would Like to Visit
We all have a place that we would like to visit at least once in our lifetimes. For me that place is Italy. There are many reasons why Italy remains to be my number one travelling destination. With a culture spanning more than 2500 years, it is among the few ancient civilizations that have stood the test of time and are still in existence today. As a result, Italy is the home to prehistoric sites and ancient monuments.
It is also the world capital of fashion and is the home to gorgeous beaches and ethereal land formations that are sure to blow everyone’s minds away. The language is also very beautiful-I mean the word romantic must have had its origins from the Italians, because of their seductive nature. And the Italian cuisine is without a doubt the best on earth. To be honest, there are so many wonderful places in Italy that I’m uncertain which places to visit first. According to the general consensus however, these are the places to visit on the first trip.
Once the capital of the Roman Empire, Rome is so rich in cultural artefacts and monuments making it one of the most popular tourist’s destinations. It is estimated that there are so many artifacts in this ancient city that it may take months to exhaust all of them. One particular monument that I would like to see is the Colosseum. Inaugurated in the year AD 80, this ancient structure is the first of its kind and was used for festivals, games, circuses and theatrical performances.
Modern sports arenas have borrowed heavily from its design. I would also like to visit the Vatican. Though it is located in Rome, Vatican is actually an independent state ruled by the Pope. With an area not more than half a square kilometer in size, it houses the Vatican palace, St. Peter’s Basilica, St. Peter’s Square and the Vatican gardens within its walls. Being the capital of the Roman Catholic Church, the Vatican is one of the most visited places on earth.
There is also the Pantheon, a monument preserved for more than 2000 years. This building shows the level of mastery in architecture by the ancient romans. I also look forward to walking through the Roman Forum. Though most of it lays in ruins, the Forum was like Manhattan in the Big Apple. It was the center of the Roman civilization. It was a focal point for religious meetings, political affairs, court proceedings and commercial activities.
Another great place to visit is the Fontana di Trevi or the Trevi Fountain. It is believed that throwing coins in to this fountain guarantees your return to this beautiful city. Other places that I will definitely visit include San Giovanni in Laterano, Centro Storico, Santa Maria Maggiore, San Callisto’s Catacombs and Piazza Navona.
This Italian city has remained unchanged since the 15th century when it was the center and pioneer of the renaissance movement in Europe. Still dominating its skyline is the dome of the Santa Maria del Fiore, which was built in the 15th century. Florence is therefore filled with so much art and architecture stretching back several hundred years ago. Some of the places I look forward to visiting include, Galleria degli Uffizi.
Galleries of Uffizi are from the Renaissance period and include works by some of the greatest painters to ever walk on this earth, such as Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. One of the best tourist destinations in Florence is the Bargello Museum, which is the home to some of the best sculptures in whole of Italy. They include works from Donatello, Michelangelo, Cellini and Giambologna. I would also wish to have a taste of the delicious Panino con Lampredotto, which is a strictly Florentine dish.
One of my favorite novels is actually set in this ancient city- the Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare. Venice is like a city frozen in time with an exquisite beauty to enchant anyone who visits there. One of the best activities in this beautiful city is taking a Gondola ride and enjoying the serene environment along the Grand Canal.
Another place I would like to visit in this magnificent city is the Teatro La Fenice (Theatre of Phoenix), which is popular for its Italian opera music. Then, I would take a stroll through Venice’s largest square, the Piazza San Marco (St. Mark’s Square). It is the home of historical sites, such as Doge’s Palace, St. Mark’s Basilica and St. Mark’s Campanile. I heard that it is the best place to get souvenirs to take home, such as carnival masks and gondola hats.
Doge’s Palace (Palazzo Ducale) is also a place that I would like to tour. It is famous for its role as the doge’s (leader) residence and the palace of justice. It has a network of secret passages, which makes it an intriguing place to see. Connecting the Doge’s Palace to the dungeons is Ponte dei Sospiri or the Bridge of Sighs.
It was named so because prisoners would sigh, as they were moved from the courtroom to the dungeons for good. One such prisoner is the greatest seducer, Giacomo Casanova. He was imprisoned in “The Leads”, one of the prisons in the Doge’s Palace for five years. He however managed to escape from the prison, which was thought to be inescapable during that time. It would be exciting therefore to see the cell that Casanova was held in and get a glimpse of how he managed to escape.
This is the fashion capital of Italy, without a doubt and arguably the world’s. I want to walk through this ancient gem secretly hidden by modern apparels. My first stop would be the Navigli District, which is famous for its interconnected canals designed by none other than Leonardo da Vinci. I would definitely enjoy some meal and a glass of wine in one of the many cafes and restaurants lined up along the canals. I would also like to see Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper mural located at the Santa Maria delle Grazie.
The first of its kind, this mural has been reproduced so many times, but none comes close to the original mural. Another stop that I will definitely make is Teatro alla Scala. It is one of the best opera houses in the world and was founded by Archduchess Maria Theresa in the late 18th century. Apart from the great opera music, it is particularly famous for its gold and crimson interior finishing and décor.
The trip would not be worth it however, if I spent all my time in Milan, without getting a gist of the fashion lifestyle that has made this city a global icon in the apparel world. As a fashion lover, I know the place to be is the Grand Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. The Grand Galleria is like the Silicon Valley of the fashion world with high end luxury brands located here. Italian brands like Dolce e Gabbana, Prada, Armani and Versace have shops here.
International brands like Louis Vuitton, Yves Saint Laurent and Chanel are also located here. It has a unique design in the shape of a cross and the top is covered with glass panels to allow in sunlight. Then there is the Milan Cathedral that is a spectacle. This 600 year old building has so many statues, towers and decorations that give it a beautiful gothic design. It is actually the most popular monument in Milan in terms of tourists rankings.
This picturesque region attracts so many tourists across the world because of its beauty. The towns along the coast are dotted with multi-colored houses on mountain regions with a backdrop of green hue from its rich fauna. Just looking at the photos blows my mind away and I would definitely want to have firsthand experience of the place.
The towns I look forward to visiting in this vast coastline include Sorrento, a fishing town with a magnificent beach; Positano, because of the beautiful pastel colored houses on the mountains overlooking the sea; and lastly, the Island of Capri because of its gorgeous landscapes, beautiful beaches and excellent mountain views. The Amalfy Coast is so beautiful that it is really hard to select which places to go.
Visiting Italy will definitely be a dream come true for me. I hope to enjoy all the unforgettable moments with someone special to make the trip worthwhile. And while there, I just hope we will do what the romans do and do not come out overtly weird by our fascination of the country. I will definitely throw several coins at the Fontana di Trevi to make sure that I go there severally. But for now, Divertiti.