Bird’s Eye View of Florence and Sienna Italy

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Duomo di Firenze

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Duomo di Firenze; copyright jmeyersforeman

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Bell Tower

Cathedral of Santa Maria; Bell Tower; copyright jmeyersforeman

Piazza del Campo; Siena Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Piazza del Campo; Siena Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

It has been a busy couple of days walking up many many stairs to get the bird’s-eye view of Florence and Sienna. Up and down the cupola and the bell tower of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore for some of the most famous views of Florence Italy. The next day we travelled to Siena and while we were there I headed of the tower to see the view of Siena and the Piazza del Campo.

It hasn’t been all hard work, we found a great gelato shop and had some tasty cinnamon and chocolate gelato as a reward for all the walking!

Rainy day in Italy

Rainy Day Ravenna red umbrella jmeyersforeman

Rainy Day in Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

We have had a few rainy days, or at least rainy afternoons while visiting Italy, but the rain has not slowed down our sightseeing. The tables and chairs go unused but they are a great inspiration for street photography. The beautiful line of tables and chairs forming a leading line through the photo, to the windows, and the reflections of people and umbrellas. I think the red umbrella is the perfect example of the story coming together in one simple photo. Rain or no rain, it was another great day.

Ravenna Italy; Art and Architecture

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforeman

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforeman

We took a short train ride from Bologna to visit Ravenna, during our day we managed to see 4 of the 8 UNESCO designated sites in the city. Pictured above is the Basilica Di S. Vitale, described in our guidebook as “The most glorious example of Byzantine art int he West”  Instead of the traditional three naves of Gothic architecture it is octagonal in shape with a central dome supported by eight columns and arches.

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Basilica Di S. Vitale; copyright jmeyersforem

Not far from there the Neonian Baptistery, the oldest of Ravenna’s ancient monuments, while it is a simple octagonal building, built with the short flat brick a traditional feature of the architecture in Northern Italy. The mosaic art were made in mid 5th century.

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic "Crhistening of Jesus

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic “Christening of Jesus

A closer view of the centre art piece

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic "Crhistening of Jesus

In the cupola of the Neonian Bapistery, the Mosaic “Christening of Jesus 

We also went to see the Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna Italy, first built-in the mid 5th century, the interior has been modified several times. The ceiling was last modified in the 17th century.

Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo

Basilica Saint Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman 

some of the detailed mosaic work of the Basilica Saint Apollinaire Nuovo.

 

The Magi_Basilica of S. Apollinairs Nuovo

The Magi_Basilica of S. Apollinairs Nuovo 

The mosaics are frescos are amazing, the photos hardly do them justice! We only had one day in Ravenna, it would be quite easy to spend 3 or 4 days enjoying the art and architecture, as well as the cafes and street life.

Now we are off to Florence for a few days!

 

San Petronio seen from the Piazza Maggiore

San Petronio, Bologna Italy, copyright jmeyersforeman

San Petronio, Bologna Italy, copyright jmeyersforeman

San Petronio, Bologna’s most famous and impressive church. It is the sixth largest church in Europe. Its size is impressive: 132 metres long by 66 metres wide by 45 metres tall with the facade reaching a height of 51 metres. Construction of the basilica began in 1390, the basilica should have been the largest in the world, but things didn’t go well: the pope didn’t approve of the idea of a church larger than St. Peters. The construction of the Basilica was put on hold for a long time, partly due to lack of funding and the technical challenges of achieving the very high Gothic vaults

Last day in Verona; foggy, rainy, but warm and worth the visit!

Ponte Scaligero, Verona Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Ponte Scaligero, Verona Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

One of the many bridges of Verona, and just one of the many places we visited during our three days in the city!

Despite the weather we enjoyed our visit, and we are now off the Bologna, a short 1 hour train ride south of Verona, and with one more good night sleep I will, hopefully, be over the jet-lag, and have something interesting to tell you about our visit!

Verona Italy, River Adige and the

Verona, River Adige and Ponte Pietra; copyright jmeyersforeman

Verona, River Adige and Ponte Pietra; copyright jmeyersforeman 

The Ponte Pietra is a Roman arch bridge crossing the Adige River in Verona Italy. It had been cloudy with spots of rain all day, so we didn’t think there would be much of a sunset! Lucky for us the clouds broke ever so slightly and there was a little bit of pink showing through. Using a long exposure so there is a softness to the clouds and water.  The second image is taken from the other side; the water has nothing to ripple over and the long exposure enhances the reflection. 

Verona Italy, River Adige and Ponte Pietra; copyright jmeyersforeman

Verona Italy, River Adige and Ponte Pietra; copyright jmeyersforeman 

It is getting dark earlier and the street lights are coming on earlier. We have been suffering a little jet lag so our days and nights a little confused and more than a little tired, but that is expected I guess.

We are off to Bologna today, just a short train ride from Verona.

On Saturday I am going to participate in the Scott Kelby World Wide Photo Walk tomorrow, so I am looking forward to meeting up with some fellow photographers and seeing the lovely Bologna Italy! How about you, are you participating in the photo walk?

I hope your friday is a good one.

 

Verona Italy and the mythology of Romeo and Juliet

photos with Juliet

photos with Juliet; copyright jmeyersforeman 

The House of Juliet, where the real-life Cappello family once lived, is a mob scene. The tiny, courtyard is a spectacle, with visitors from all over the world posing on the balcony and taking snapshots of each other rubbing Juliet’s bronze breast, and hoping to get lucky in love.  The walls are covered with love notes and pennies stuck to the wall with gum.

love notes on the wall

love notes on the wall; copyright jmeyersforeman 

gum and pennies

gum and pennies; copyright jmeyersforeman 

and of course there is a tourist shop selling the usual tourist items, and love locks.

love locks and love letters

love locks and love letters; copyright jmeyersforeman 

Verona has so much more to offer, in the way of historical sites, wonderful quaint wine bars and beautiful piazzas, but everyone who visits the city stops here in this tiny courtyard, a pilgrimage of sorts, to great love story.

 

 

 

 

Piazza Delle Erbe, Verona Italy

checking out Piazza Delle Erbe; Verona Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

checking out Piazza Delle Erbe; Verona Italy; copyright jmeyersforeman

Ciao from Verona Italy.

After about 19 hours in transit, travel about 7500 nautical kilometres we arrived in Verona Italy late Monday night just a little tired.

Tuesday afternoon we headed out to wander the streets and get acquainted with the city. With no clear plan we walked into the city centre, through Piazza Bra past the Roman Amphitheatre and onto the Piazza Delle Erbe or Market Square. Here poet Berto Barbarani looks out over the square. A lovely square filled with history, restaurants, and market stalls filled to the brim with tourist goodies!

Market Stall Piazza Delle Erbe, and tourist goods for  sale; copyright jmeyersforeman

Market Stall Piazza Delle Erbe, and tourist goods for sale; copyright jmeyersforeman

 

Travelling; Flying to Italy

 

"looking out the window" copyright jmeyersforeman

“looking out the window” copyright jmeyersforeman

“Once a year go someplace you have never been”

Dalai Lama

We have decided to visit as many places as we can visit in one very short year and now we are off  to Italy where the food and wine is as rich as the history and art. I am packing a little more camera equipment, a better tripod and a new portable storage device for all the photos I plan on taking!

 

English Countryside

English Countryside; copyright jmeyersforeman

English Countryside; copyright jmeyersforeman

When I think of the English Countryside this is what I think of when I close my eyes. Imagine my surprise when my cousins took us to this lovely location last July, not far from their house. While the lush green countryside and a big white house sitting near the river could be one of many places, it is the size and shape of the house that has that only English charm to me.

If not English than where? does this photo remind you of someplace, if so let me know where and why. I would love to hear your story.