The Palatine Hill overlooks the Roman Colosseum and the site of the ancient Roman Forum and was a very important residential area in the height of the Roman Empire. A walk through the ruins of the Palatine Hill is an interesting and convenient extension for any tourist visiting the Colosseum. Excavation of the site continues and can impact on one’s chosen route as a number of the vias are blocked off for further archeological exploration work. No worse than trying to get around any number of road construction projects in a modern city :-).
Looking down from above, the visitor on the Palatine Hill can view the area of the Roman Forum in the foreground and various large buildings further away including, Basilica of Maxentius (Basilica di Massenzio), Temple of Rolulus (Tempio di Romolo), Temple of Antonius and Faustina (Tempio di Antonino e Faustina), Curia, Alter of the Fatherland (Altare della Patria), Arch of Septimius Severus (Arco di Settimio Severo), and the Temple of Castor and Pollux (Tempio di Costore e Polluce)
This headless male statue was recently excavated from a corridor beneath the Farnese Gardens and is made from 12+ pieces of Parian marble held together with iron clamps.
A number of other statues and busts are on display in the underground corridor as well as in the Palatino Museum (Museo Palatino).
On the far side of the hill is located the structure referred to as the Stadium of Doitian (Stadio di Domiziano). Too small for chariots, the structure might have been used for foot races or gardens with many statues and busts lining the infield area. Its precise usage is still a subject of archeological discussion.
This fine example of a Roman umbrella pine stands atop Palatine Hill. Known by various names, the Stone Pine (Pinus pinea) with its flat umbrella-like canopy and thick heavily fizzured red bark is a Mediterranean native prized for its edible pine nuts (seeds).
I was trying to photograph a couple of hooded crows but they flew away leaving me to photograph yet another pigeon before we called it a day and went looking for a modern-day chariot to whisk us back to our hotel room.
Nothing like a ride in a Roman taxi to raise the adrenaline level at 4:30 in the afternoon. Our driver managed to travel these narrow roads at speeds exceeding 70kph and took almost no time to transport us across town. He even stopped to stop and talk to a buddy on a motorcycle along the way!