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Il Vittoriano a fine white marble structure built under the auspices of newly installed King Victor Emmanuel and was inaugurated in 1911, a symbol of Italian unity. It has been the centerpiece for many important processions and moments of glory since Italy's reunification, including the parades of Mussolini that took place outside it. The statue of Emmanuel stands tall in front of this magnificent building along with the tomb of the unknown soldier nearby. The whole edifice has a massive and grandiose appearance covered in marble and atop sit two quadrigae of the goddess Victoria. Today, it houses an interesting museum which details the international and domestic intrigue which resulted in the Risorgimento, or the Reunification of the Country. Open hours vary by season. Call before visiting.
Rome is the capital of Italy. Its rich history, charming culture and beautiful architecture attracts hundreds and thousands of visitors from the world over. The city is also known to be among the oldest continuously occupied regions in Europe. The historic center of this global city is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The National Museum of Rome is reputed to have some of the best collections of relics and ancient artifacts in the world. The Vatican Museum, Roman Forum, St. Peter's Cathedral and the Colosseum are a must visit here. And while you are in Rome, don't forget to feast on the local Italian cuisine and sip on some splendid Italian wine!
Beset on all sides by roads, the square is heavily congested with traffic. In the background, the Altare della Patria is dedicated to King Vittorio Emanuele. Romans refer to it as the "wedding cake" or the "typewriter" because of its shape and color. Shortly after World War I, the body of the Unknown Soldier was brought here and placed in the center of the steps of the Vittoriano. It has a permanent armed guard. Palazzo Venezia was built during the second half of the 15th Century and was where the Venetian ambassadors to Rome stayed. Later it became the residence of the Cardinal of the Basilica of St Mark.
This is an example of a "talking statue"; one that used to represent opinions that were counter to the dominant power. This one is unique because it is of a woman, Madama Lucrezia, who was well-known to Alfonso of Aragon, the king of Naples. She came to Rome after the death of the king as a guest of Cardinal Pietro Barbo. The people of Rome named the statue in honor of her beauty.
The Fontana della Pigna stands in the Piazza San Marco near Piazza Venezia. It represents the large ancient pinecone (now held in the Vatican) after which the district was named. The fountain was designed by Pietro Lombardi who was commissioned to create ten small fountains in 1927 with the aim of beautifying the city. The fountain is made entirely from travertine stone and is formed by a small basin from which two corollas of tulips stretch as they support the pine cone. The water spurts from side jets, falling primarily into the basin and then into a larger tank at ground level.
Beyond the entrance staircase of Vittoriano is the Altare della Patria, by the sculptor Angelo Zanelli. From November 4, 1921 is placed inside the body of the Unknown Soldier in memory of all the Italian soldiers died in the First World War. To keep watch on the altare della Patria is a guard of honor and a great statue of the goddess Roma.
Centro Storico is where you will find many of Rome's historic sites, from the Campo de' Fiori to the Pantheon to Piazza Navona. Because the city attracts millions of tourists each year, this is also where you will find a lot of the upscale shops. The pedestrian-only via dei Condotti has all the favorites, the kind of shops that you wait in line for just to get in, even when there is no one inside: MaxMara, Modigliani, Louis Vuitton, Salvatore Ferragamo, Cartier, Gucci, Hermès. The whole district is a wonderful maze of cobblestone streets. You will find mostly tourists here, including a celebrity or two. Romans head to the outskirts of town for their less expensive shopping, but this is where the big names are, so do not be put off by this fact. It is an excellent area to come to if you have limited time as you can see the sites and get in your shopping in the same area. This is the area most people think of when they envision Rome; the old center of the city and one that attracts millions of visitors every year.
The Roman skyline is marked by several beautiful domes, one of the prominent Forum ones being Santa Maria di Loreto. This 16th century church took over 60 years to built. The work began with Donato Bramante in 1507 and was taken forward by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger. The intricate dome and the bell tower were designed by Michelangelo prodigy Jacopo del Duca in 1573. The entrance portal carries the signature of Andrea Sansovino. The church is built on a central plan and is made up of semicircular chapels. It is decorated with mosaics, canvases, and six statues representing angels and saints.