We love the annual Jameson Dublin International Film Festival (#JDIFF). A wide array of locally sourced and international movies come to town over a two week period. We're always spoiled for choice. We had the chance to play paparazzi and attend the Irish premiere of 'The Stag', a movie about a metro-sexual groom-to-be and his rag tag band of friends who decide to go against tradition and host his stag party in the wilds of the Wicklow Mountains. Hilarity ensues when the bride's brother, aka 'The Machine' invites himself along.
We love visiting the Science Gallery. The exhibits add a liberal dash of art to works of science and make for a fascinating visit. It's also free (donations appreciated) which is a nice bonus. Recently, an exhibition called 'Fail Better' was on and my team at work decided to plan an excursion to see the exhibit to learn more about how to embrace failure and how it ultimately can help achieve wild success. We planned the visit for a Monday. Hmm...FAIL...the Science Gallery is closed on a Monday. We were not off to an auspicious start.
We looked out across the Tiber in Rome. The river was swollen and rushing past us.
The water seemed to be almost lapping against the bridge above.
Walking along, we spotted Castel Sant'Angelo. We debated for a good few minutes on whether we should spend the 7 EUR to enter. We ultimately decided to go for it (you only live once!) and we're so glad we did.
We made our way across the river to the fortress. We noted St. Peter's Basilica and Vatican City in the distance. It was still light out when we entered but was quite close to sunset.
We paid our admission fee and had a look around. Castel Sant'Angelo features a number of museum exhibits with pieces from antiquity.
It was evident that this place was once a defensive fortress as rows of cannons faced outward and stacks of cannonballs stood at the ready nearby.
We looked up at the round walls above us - it was an impressive structure.
We circled the structure once, dancing between the raindrops.
We eyed the platform above and set our sights on it.
We could look down and out at people milling about on the bridge leading over the river.
Eventually, the sun set and we were treated to spectacular twinkling views of Vatican City.
We also looked out over various other landmarks like the Vittorio Emanuele II Monument.
Once again, we looked down on the bridge over the Tiber below us.
Lights illuminated the far bank.
The fortress walls were even more imposing at night.
We inspected the fortifications one last time before winding our way through the sloped stone passageway to the exit.
We looked back on Castel Sant'Angelo as we crossed the river to return to the cobbled streets of Rome.
We passed a number of other ruins and modern day monuments that evening which made our walk extremely atmospheric despite the rain.
We spent our weekend in Rome at the conveniently located and affordable (less than 60 Euro a night including breakfast) Hotel Montreal. The hotel was conveniently located about a 10 minute walk from the Rome Termini train station.
The place had a no-frills but comfortable and homey vibe.
I particularly liked this display case of goldfish in the breakfast room. Bellisima!