3 interesting things to do in Rome
Rome is a charming city and is observed even more from some places thanks to optical illusions transforming certains point in the city into something different. Legends, secret locations, original views…The eternal city is full of them. Here are three interesting things for you to do during your stay in Rome.
LOOK THROUGH THE AVENTINE KEYHOLE – At a villa situated on Aventine Hill there is a huge green door that hides a secret. The villa belongs to one of the oldest military orders, the Knights of Malta. Although you won’t actually be able to go into the building, you can look through the keyhole and discover a little treasure, a spectacular view of Saint Peter’s Dome in the Vatican City. Not just that, while you have your eye to the keyhole, you will also be able to see three countries at the same time, the Vatican at the bottom, Malta in the middle and Italy at its feet. This interesting keyhole is located a short distance away from the Orange Garden (Giardino degli Aranci), where you will be able to enjoy a pleasant walk. Where:Piazza dei Cavalieri di Malta.
OPTICAL ILLUSIONS IN THE VATICAN – There are many treats for the eyes in the Vatican City. Saint Peter’s Square, surrounded by stunning colonnades built by Bernini, has a little trick up its sleeve. Nearby to the central obelisk there is a stone on the ground that marks “the centre of the colonnade”. From this exact point, thanks to an optical illusion, these four rows of columns become one.
The Via Niccolò Piccolomini is a small residential street from where you can admire Saint Peter’s dome in the Vatican. The further away you go, the larger and nearer the dome seems, whilst the nearer you move, the further away the dome looks. Another optical illusion in Rome. Where: Saint Peter’s Square in Vatican City. Via Niccolò Piccolomini.
LA BOCCA DELLA VERITA (The Mouth of Truth) – This impressive 1st century marble medallion is one of the most popular oracles in the world. Its bearded face with eyes, mouth and nose holes represent an old pagan god (Jupiter or Oceanus) or a faun as believed by some. It isn’t very clear either as to whether it was a fountain or manhole cover, however it is famous for other reasons. According to several old age traditions from the Middle Ages, when a liar put his hand in the Mouth of Truth, it would close and bite their hand off. Do you dare try out this lie detector? Where: Santa María in Cosmedín (Piazza della Bocca della Verità, 18).
Here is one of the nicest scenes from Roman Holiday featuring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn with the Mouth of Truth.