Table of content
- A special cinema showing what Rome looked like through the centuries
- Imperial Forums
- Castel Sant’Angelo
- Forum of Augustus
- Basilica of Saint Peter in the Vatican
- The immersive cinema
- The history of Rome in (very) brief
- Useful info for your visit
- Save this article for later
What did Ancient Rome look like? 🤔
What kind of city Raphael walked into in the 1500s? And what did it look like to Bernini, 100 years later?
Sometimes it takes a lot of imagination to picture in our mind what the ruins looked like originally. They might look just like a bunch of stones..
That’s why I LOOOVE reconstructions! 😍 They make me dream! (And I know you love them too!)
So you can imagine what a sensation it was when I entered this incredible cinema. 🤩
A special cinema showing what Rome looked like through the centuries
This place is called “Welcome to Rome” and it is located between Campo de’ Fiori and Piazza Navona, so in the historical center of Rome.
Inside you will discover what ancient Rome looked like, through an immersive cinema and four different reconstructions. As you enter the site, they give you an audio guide which will synchronize as you enter the different rooms.
I’d suggest you to start with the four reconstructions, each of them in a separate room:
Here you will have a clear picture of how the modern city lays on top of the ancient one! With projections and 3d models you will see the extension of the Forums (the downtown squares of Ancient Rome) against the modern street via dei Fori Imperiali
Walk back in time with us, in our super-fun Virtual Walk through Ancient Rome ruins!
This model shows how this building became a castle through the centuries. In fact Castel Sant’Angelo was originally a mausoleum built by the emperor Hadrian for himself and his family. Later on it became a fortress where the Popes took shelter in dangerous situations.
Forum of Augustus
When today you look at the Forum of Augustus, you may not imagine how grandiose this ancient Roman complex was. The reconstruction will show you the majestic temple of Venus, the halls on the sides and the sturdy fireproof precinct wall behind all of this, which still survives today
Basilica of Saint Peter in the Vatican
Everyone knows the basilica of St Peter. But how many do know that the original basilica was another one? Here you will find out how a very bold Pope, Julius II, decided to destroy a 1000-year-old basilica built by Constantine in ancient Rome, to build a brand new one. Sounds crazy to us, but I imagine Julius II felt quite confident by having Raphael and Michelangelo next to him 😉
The immersive cinema
After enjoying the reconstructions, you will enter a special cinema. This cinema has four screens (one in front of you, two on the sides and one below). All of these screens together make the experience super immersive and tri-dimensional! 🤯
The show lasts 30 minutes and it is an incredible experience. A voice will guide you through over 2700 years of history of Rome, in a super easy and simple way.
The history of Rome in (very) brief
The story of Rome starts millions of years ago, when the Italian peninsula was under water and the limestone started to accumulate, forming the travertine stone. Which is the stone the Roman used to build the Colosseum, and pretty much everything in the city! 😅
Then the storytelling continues through Rome starting as a huts village, to become an empire stretching over three continents.
The show will also cover what Rome looked like in the middle ages, after the fall of the Roman empire. You will be shocked to find out that the city shrank from over 1 million inhabitants (at its highest peak, 2nd century AD) down to only 30000 inhabitants! The city almost disappeared!
Then gradually the Popes took control of the city and started shaping the way Rome looks like today. They built churches, squares, and fountains. All the major landmarks (excluding the ancient ruins) that tourists come to visit still today!
It is a great summary for both those who know Rome very well and those who know nothing about it.
I loved this experience and recommend it to anyone, adults and kids (schools bring their students here too) either at the start of at the end of your Roman holiday. 😊
Some useful info
“Welcome to Rome” is located Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, in between Campo de’ Fiori and Piazza Navona. Therefore very handy while you visit the historical center of the city.
Tickets can be purchased on-site. For all the information refer to their website: https://welcometo-rome.it/
I hope you’ll enjoy the visit to this special cinema. And if you go, let me know your thoughts about it! 😊
If you like this article, you can Buy Me a Coffee as a thanks! ☕️😊 https://www.buymeacoffee.com/livevirtualguid
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