Strolling Around the Colosseum

Sometimes in life and in travel, things don’t go as planned. Trains are missed, bags are left behind, and wallets are stolen. And in my case, blog schedules are scrapped to make way for some exciting new life events. Today’s post (or let’s be honest, Saturday’s post) was meant to be all about my spring visit to the Louvre with my boyfriend Dan. Instead, I’m showcasing some photos from our trip to the Colosseum. Why?

I got engaged on Saturday! Ahhhh! After nearly four years of dating, Dan granted my biggest wish and proposed at the Cinderella Wishing Well in Disney’s Magic Kingdom! We’ve tossed coins in the well so many times now, and every time, I wished for a proposal and a shiny new ring…and now that dream has come true! (Head on over to my Instagram page to see the gorgeous ring he picked out!)

We plan on taking some time to enjoy the holidays and will begin planning the wedding after we ring in the New Year, but in the meantime, I’ll obviously be a little distracted. The last thing I want to do right now is spend hours writing, formatting and fact-checking my posts, which is why I opted for a simple photo essay instead. Insert code, maybe a caption or two, and voila! This will be my last post before Christmas, so please enjoy the photos and have a wonderful holiday, wherever you are in the world!

Bright yellow construction walls leading up to the Colosseum in Rome.
Loads of construction leading up to the world famous Colosseum – it’s not quite the first impression we expected!
Dan jokingly pointing at the butt of a crumbled statue of a horse at the Colosseum
That’s my fiance, ladies and gents! (Don’t be fooled, this photo was all my idea and he was embarrassed even while it was happening, ha!)
First glimpse of the inside of the Colosseum arena
First glimpse of the center of the arena
Steep stairs leading up to the second level of the Colosseum in Rome
Stairs leading up to the second visitor-accessible level. It may not look it, but these stairs were steep! I don’t envy the people who climbed them regularly!
View of the trees and blue skies from inside one of the Colosseum's arched openings.
Peeking out at a nearby park. The area around the Colosseum had loads of shops, restaurants and this lovely park. We didn’t get to explore much this time around, but we will next time!
Visitors strolling past interesting exhibits on the history of Rome's beloved Colosseum
The second level of the Colosseum showcases some important historical artifacts and sheds some light on what it was really like to visit the Colosseum in its heyday. It’s the brains to the arena’s brawn.
Dan looking out over the Colosseum while listening to his audio guide.
Dan looking out over the Colosseum while listening to his audio guide. Look at that sweet smile!
View of the two viewing levels included in a standard Colosseum admission ticket
In this photo, you can see the two main visitor levels. The first level is great for getting a closer look at the arena floor, while the second level offers great big-picture views over the whole arena. Certain tours, I’m told, also take guests down to floor level and to a third, even higher level of the structure.
Photo of myself inside the Colosseum
Cheesing hard! What an incredible experience.
The worn walls of the ancient Colosseum set against the colorful buildings of the city that lies beyond.
I love all the color and texture in this photo! The worn walls of the ancient Colosseum set against the colorful buildings of the city that lies beyond.
The stone walls of the Colosseum covered in scratches and scribbles...ancient Roman graffiti!
Ancient Roman graffiti! No really…these markings are almost as old as the Colosseum itself.
Dan smiling as he surveys the Colosseum arena.
The ever-patient Dan smiling for yet another photo.
More of those gorgeous arches set against bright blue Roman skies!
More of those gorgeous arches! As you can see from the pointed metal gate, large parts of the Colosseum are off-limits to preserve what remains of the structure.
The Arch of Constantine, seen from the Colosseum
The Arch of Constantine, seen from the Colosseum
View of the Colosseum interior, which actually resembles a modern day football stadium!
That view! If you think this is cool, imagine it back in the day! It strongly reminded me of a football stadium, and it was so odd to see all the similarities firsthand. With the rowdy crowds and the screaming fans, I bet watching the games and fights at the Colosseum was a lot like attending a modern day sporting event.
Guests enjoy a cool shaded spot inside the Colosseum, overlooking the Arch of Constantine.
A nice little spot to take a break and look across the way at the Roman Forum.
View of the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill from the second level of the Colosseum
There it is now! A little preview of the Forum & Palatine Hill site, which became my favorite part of our first visit to Rome.
Artistic Shot of the Worn Brick and Windowed Walls of Rome's Iconic Colosseum
One of my favorite photos from the Colosseum, and from our entire stay in Italy! I love how well-preserved the upper part of the structure is, especially contrasted against the worn and crumbling brick seen in the front.
View into the center of the Colosseum, seen from the first viewing level
View from the first level
Close up view of the network of tunnels once hidden beneath the Colosseum's arena floor.
It was so cool to get up close with the arena floor!
Arches of the Colosseum, now crumbled into ruin
Imagine what this would have looked like before it started to crumble and fall!
The crumbled remains of steps to the Colosseum's upper arena seating. The staircase is now protected by a metal fence to prevent guests from climbing the now unsafe steps.
More of those super steep stairs! These ones were so worn down they looked more like a giant misshapen rock than anything else. Like I said earlier, I would not want to climb these allllll the way up to the cheap seats!
Another shot of the tunnels beneath the Colosseum's arena floor
The lower half of the picture shows the series of halls and rooms below the arena floor. This is where beasts and men were prepared and led to their doom, sometimes lifted through trap doors and right into the center of the arena!
A closer look at one of the once-hidden hallways where fighters spent their final moments before ascending into the Colosseum's arena.
A closer look at one of the hallways. Imagine spending your final moments here while the crowd roars overhead.
Vertical shot showing the various textures and building materials used to build, and later preserve, Rome's famous Colosseum
The varied levels of the Colosseum.
Exterior shot of the Colosseum, with beautiful blue skies in the background and lush green trees in the foreground.
A photo that needs no caption. So gorgeous!
My cheesy, camera-toting self reflected in Dan's sunglasses
He’s so patient with me, ha! This was the reality of visiting Rome, Dan taking in the sights while I hopped around taking photos like a maniac.
Beautiful city buildings of Rome tucked around the side of the Colosseum
I loved all the warm tones in Rome! The orange, tan and yellow buildings, the speckled walls of the Colosseum…even the grass had colorful bunches of flowers to share!
Another photo of the Colosseum on a beautiful day!
Forgive the gratuitous amount of exterior shots here. I can write and I can take decent photos, but one thing I can’t do is pick favorites out of the bunch!
The iconic shot of the whole Colosseum exterior, taken from inside the Roman Forum.
This lovely photo was captured from inside the Roman Forum & Palatine Hill site. A gorgeous sight on a beautiful sunny day!
Myself posing with the Colosseum and the Arch of Constantine on our first trip to Rome, Italy.
I was here!
Dan posing with the Colosseum and the Arch of Constantine on our first trip to Rome, Italy.
He was too! World, meet my fiance!

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