Rome is a city which helps you to easily travel back in time. You can enjoy getting lost in the small twisting cobbled streets or can just discover some old ornate building at the next junction. I had a lot of fun exploring the city and would recommend you to too. I started my Roman exploration with none other than The Pantheon.
Built in around 100 AD, this marvelous piece of work is an absolute art. The Pantheon stands in the center of all that you want to see in Rome. So, you cannot miss out on this one and you must not. Plus, it is free.
It is one of the best -preserved monuments which has stood tall for almost 2000 years now. Considering that, it is also an engineering wonder. We approached the building from the back and it did not look much of an attraction. So, keeping our fingers crossed, we went to the front of the building. The giant granite columns were there to welcome us in and appreciate the dome from inside.
Entering, we found the most interesting dome structure we had ever seen.
The first thing we did was look up, up and up to the oculus. Yes, the eye of the building. The dome structure has an opening in the center of the dome. It must have been so cool in the old times when the building was brightly lit by the sun and the moon. Next, it was the patterns on the dome. They are not very ornate but simple. To me, they looked very modern with big square patterns.
Looking around you can find idols in all directions. It has, of course, changed hands over the many years. So, they are not as old as the building. The Pantheon was once a place of worship for 12 gods, well many gods. This is highly debated.
You can easily spend around an hour or two just looking around, trying to grasp all of it.
The dome has a hole on the top which is open. So, when it rains, it obviously gets in. However, it never floods inside. While one may think, it is an act of god, it was the clever designers. The building has small holes on the floor in the central region which drained the water away. It had just rained when we were visiting. So, we saw it in action.
I would recommend having 1-2 hours for visiting Pantheon. You do not have much walking around but can spend time here relaxing and absorbing all of it. Visiting in the evening would be better when performers line up to grab your attention. You can sit next to the fountain next to the Pantheon and unwind yourself.