Showing posts from July, 2018

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FLORENCE     Florence –  the capital of the Tuscany region and the cradle of Renaissance   We opted for Flix Bus while traveling from Venice to Florence. The road journey takes about three and a half-hour. In Florence, it terminates at the rear end of Santa Maria Novella (SMN) train station. One of Italy’s busiest stations, it got its name from Santa Maria Novella Church just across the plaza from the main entrance. We debarked at the station and refreshed ourselves at McDonald's before hiring a cab for our hotel. Florence, popularly known as ‘Firenze’ by the Italians, is located in central Italy. This dreamy city with a romantic name is the regional capital of the lovely Tuscany region.   Columbus Hotel, where we stayed, is located in Lugarno District. We always prefer to book our hotels through as we always land up getting good hotels at good locations. Despite being a little away from the heart of the city and Santa Maria Novella station

A Roman Holiday

ROMA - Ancient Rome & Papal Rome Imagine going back 2000 years in time and space while standing on the stone floor inside a colossal amphitheater. Amidst thousands of Roman spectators. The booms of drums reverberate as the ceremonial parade enters the stadium. After saying ‘Ave imperator; morituri te salutant’ (those who are about to die salute you) to the Emperor, the gladiatorial combat begins. The crowd shouts jeers and throw their hands up in excitement. 60000 spectators? Like the excitement at Eden Gardens in Calcutta while watching a Cricket match. The gestures, the excitement, the uproar may be different from our present-day Mexican waves. But how does that matter? After all, a stadium is a venue for entertainment – be it the bloodiest sport in the history of mankind. And how the Romans loved watching violence and killings. Historians remain befuddled as to how Romans who are regarded as the precursor of human civilization could have indulged and e