Ah, the splendor that is Rome!  We spent only four days there but were able to visit all the well know sites and some off the beaten path.  Into that second category I place the gentleman above, glanced through an open doorway as we strolled through the Palazzo Senatorio.

Here's a view of Rome's ancient Agora, where Romans met, talked and shopped in Imperial times.

And then there's the Colosseum.  This was our first stop in Rome, and why not?  What else says Rome more than the Colosseum? 

Inside the Colosseum.  The underground design and construction is just as impressive as what's above ground.

The Pantheon is an incredible feat of architecture and engineering. 
Not only is it beautiful (when you imagine it without the scaffolding, anyhow) but it's sheer scale is very impressive and even details like how to deal with rain water falling into the open oculus at the center of the dome (there are holes in some of the floor tiles for the water to run out).

The ruins of Circus Maximus.

More relics of Ancient Rome.

But of course, Rome wasn't built in a day, nor did it's innovative architecture and characters end with the fall of the empire.  The Spanish steps are a beautiful star atop one of Rome's most fashionable shopping streets.  That's an authentic obelisk atop the steps, brought back from Egypt thousands of years ago.  And, of course, this is the meeting spot where Gregory Peck catches up with Audrey Hepburn and convinces her to spend the day with him in "Roman Holiday."  So, a historical spot indeed!

This is a close up view of the Trevi Fountain.  Search for "Fontana di Trevi" on Google Maps, it looks kinda cool from space, too.

Then on a Wednesday we went to visit St. Peter's Square and the rest of the Vatican.  Below you can see the square from the vantage point of the viewing level of St. Peter's Basilica's dome.

Did I mention that we went on a Wednesday?  That's an important piece of information because every Wednesday morning, a crowd like this gathers, waiting to see a gentleman in a red hat...

The Pope!  We hadn't really planned on listening in to the Pope's weekly address, but we arrived at just the right time so decided to join in.  Angela and her father were ushered to literally the front row (because her dad was in his wheelchair), and Kyle got to sit no more than 50m further back.  But, before his remarks, the Pope road the Popemobile through the crowd; Kyle got this picture from about 5 meters away.

This is my bootleg picture of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel (since you're not supposed to take pictures).  If you zoom in more it's a bit blurry, but at this zoom it looks pretty good.  Well done, Michaelangelo!

A mosaic on the interior of the dome within St. Peter's Basilica.

Now we'll finish with two more sites featured in the film "Roman Holiday."  Behind Paul, Angela's dad, is the fortress St. Angelo.  In the movie there are barges set up near here where Audrey Hepburn dances with her barber.

And finally, the Mouth of Truth (Bocca della Verita), which was part of the single most famous scene in the movie.  Legend has it that if you are prone to lying the statue will bite your hand off; somehow, Angela and Kyle survived with all their fingers in tact.