Rome, Italy – Vatican Stairs (up view)

Vatican Stairs (up view)

NIKON D300, Nikon 18-200 VR

Here is the up view of the Vatican Stairs.  If you are in Rome, make sure to visit the Vatican!   I was amazed by the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Museum, etc…  Tons to see!  When you arrive into the Sistine Chapel…there are many people looking up at the beauty above!  No pictures are allowed.  When you see it…it is very sureal.  Another amazing area is St. Peter’s Basilica.  Just so beautiful!  Everywhere you look…just breathtaking!!   St. Peter’s was my favorite location at the Vatican.   I didnt bring my tripod…not sure if it is allowed.  So everything I took was hand held.   Make sure to set the proper aperature!

Rome overall is fantastic.  It is a big city.  This means everything is about a 10 minute taxi ride away.  So it will cost you some Euros to get around. If possible take a tour bus.  I did the hop on hop off bus tour.  Fun and worth it!  When we arrived at the Colosseum….another sureal view.  Its like you are seeing something unbelievable….and its real!    Not a ton of angles to shoot the facade..but you can get some good shots.   Try to be artistic in your thoughts.  The standard shots look kinda boring.  My header above is of one of many angles shots I took.   I took the 2 hour tour inside and it was just ok.  I’d chosse to walk it alone and save some money.  The Colosseum is truly on of the wonders of the world!

The are many spots to see in Rome to photograph.  Rome is a must visit city if you get to Europe..or live there!  I’d say my favorite European cities are:  1) Paris  2) London 3) Rome  4) Vienna 5) Zurich  Oh yeah…and the food in Italy is tremendous!!!!   I still have many places in Italy to visit!  If I get to them…I will post em here!  Have fun!

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Rome, Italy – The Vatican Stairs

Vatican Stairs

NIKON D300, Nikon 12-24

Here is one of my favorite pictures…the Vatican Stairs in Rome.  I flew into Rome last year for business and typically get in on a Sunday AM.  I was to make my way up Italy on Monday and leave Rome the next day.  As it is Sunday the Vatican is closed.  So I had never had a chance to see it!  Luckily (I guess) my luggage was lost and I had to stay in Rome an additional day.  I thought it was a great time to take the tour of the Vatican! Finally!

It was a Monday morning around 9 AM…I took a taxi to the Vatican and the lines were long!  As I got into the line…the traditional tour people asked me if I wanted to skip the line and join a personal tour.  I looked ahead at the line and agreed.  Sometimes you feel as though you are getting ripped off…but this actually turned out to be a great tour!  It was 3 1/2 hours long and they took you everywhere!  I had in my pocket a picture of this shot I had found one day and always wanted to take it!  My goal was to find this spot.

As our group gathered at the Vatican Museum back entrance…I took a seat and prepared my camera.  We began the tour and I eagerly looked for this location.  The tour was just about complete and we were finishing up at the entrance to St. Peter’s square.  I was sad…I had not seen the stairs.  I took out my picture and showed the guide.  She told me it was all the way at the beginning of the tour!  Yikes!  She said I could try and go backwards to find it.  I used my noggin and told every security guard on the way…I lost my tour and showed them the picture – can you point me in the direction of the stairs – this is where they are located.  I was stopped 4 times and one time had to show my ticket.  The guards were all very nice and helpful! 

I finally got to the location and had a good laugh.  When I first sat down at the beginning of the tour…the steps were right there over the edge…because I sat down I did not see them.  Too funny!  But I made it back and took this picture.  It was a fun tour indeed.  I knew I wanted to capture the whole stairs…so a wide angle lens was needed!  I opened up the aperature as light was needed also.  I took about 20 shots hand held and this was the best!  I tried an HDR…but it didnt look correct.   Definately on of my favs…it is mounted in our family room along with the view looking up the stairs (I’ll post it tomorrow).  I was proud to work for this picture…it was worth the effort. 

After this day…before my trips – now I make a list of pictures at the location I am visiting  that are priorities to shoot.   Then I try to complete my task list.  Gives you focus.  It works wonders!  I’ll tell you more about the Vatican and Rome tomorrow.  Have fun!