I will not be original, if you...
I will not be original, if you came to Rome, you must see Coliseum, especially if you have seen Gladiator movie. Anyway, Coliseum is a great place. I am glad that it was not destroyed. Impossible to believe that it stands for hundreds of years, and Roman Rulers were here, and when you enter this place... This feeling is very special, like touching to the past.
Via Appia Antica
It might seem a bit of a trek to get to the Via Appia Antica (although you can use he Archaeobus hop-on, hop-off service if you are willing to pay a bit extra) but it really is worth going if you can.
I like to combine it with a visit to the catacombs (S. Sebastiano is the nearest). Walk from there up the ancient roadway, which becomes narrower and almost traffic-free as you leave Piazza S. Sebastiano.
You'll pass many tombs; Roman law prevented burials within towns and cities, apart from infants less than 10 days old, so all the roads were lined with tombs, mausoleums and graves.
The Circus of Maxentius is one the left: visit when it's empty (as I did) and you can still, almost, hear the roar of the crowd as they watched the chariot-racing. Look carefully and you can still see large terracotta amphorae placed above the stands: they functioned as an amplification system, to make the cheers and roars of triumph even louder.
The tomb of Cecilia Metella, with its huge brick-built drum-shape, was a Roman landmark for centuries. And then you are on the Via Appia proper, its road-stones much as they were when the hundreds of crucified slaves who took part in Spartacus' slave revolt lined it. The road leads out into the countryside: hiring a bike, or planning a long walk, will bring you eventually to the Villa Dei Quintilli.
If the weather's good, take a picnic and make a day of it (avoid weekends if you can, for Romans like to visit here too). It's a completely different side of Rome, away from the crowds and fumes, taking you back into what once was.
You can take bus 118 or 218 from P. S. Giovanni in Laterano. The 218 stops at S. Callisto catacombs (walk up through the entrance and then turn right down the main drive towards S. Sebastiano..maybe 10 minutes walk), the 118 at P. S. Sebastiano.
Car Driving / La Autostrada
We drive off and somehow miraculously find the famous ‘Autostrada’ – the toll way south. We drive along for about 15 minutes and the damn fuel warning light comes on. Now we realize that the needle is almost on empty.
After about a half hour of driving, we finally settle down and finally relax for the rest of the drive.
Paying the toll along the way was easy, you slip in the ticket, slip in your credit card, out comes a receipt, the gate opens; and you’re on your way. There are three lanes of traffic on the Autostrada, a right lane for all trucks and cars going 60-70 mph. The middle lane is for 70-80 mph speed, and the left lane is for 80-90+ mph speedsters. I got lights blinked at me only 2x during the whole drive time. Everyone just seems to know where to be. We did a little driving in fast left lane doing 140 km keeping up with a good stream of traffic consisting mostly of BMWs, Audis, and Mercedes. We noticed that all the cars over there both the large models and smaller ones were always standard transmissions, including the finest and largest Mercedes, station wagons, and the public buses. This I found to be much unlike our country which has become almost exclusively automatic transmissions.
We are glad that we did the Italian drive down to Amalfi and in retrospect, enjoyed it, but probably wouldn’t do it the next time. A train would work well. I say that, but on later trips in Northern Italy, we drove easily without any tense situations. I think that cliff lined Amalfi coast area is the one to watch out for.
Stand where we are standing...
Stand where we are standing here (in front of the pantheon in rome), you'll see a McDonalds infront of you. Go up the street to the right of the mcDonalds. Walk for about 150 meters or so, and there it is on your left, the best icecream shoppe in the world. Hundreds of flavours...I visited this particular site a few times..
San Pietro - The centre of the Christian world
Don't miss the view from the dome (cupola) - it's gorgeous! You can either take the elevator or walk the steps - senza ascensore - (which is cheaper and, I think, nicer because you can see more and enjoy this majestic church to the fullest). Better come in the early morning, because there won't be so many people around.
The interior is a treasure of art: Italians greatest - Michelangelo and Benini - are to be found there. Have a look at "La Pietà", a marble statue from Michelangelo. The dome itself is his work as well.