Looking forward to a trip to Italy, we have been rereading Dan Brown’s bestseller, Angels and Demons. As well as being an exciting read, the book is a good introduction to some of the most interesting tourist sites in Rome. You can use it as a kind of guide book.
Angels and Demons features the symbologist Robert Langdon, of The Da Vinci Code fame, who follows a set of cryptic clues to save the Vatican from destruction by an antimatter bomb. Langdon dashes around Rome in just four hours, but you can take a more leisurely pace and enjoy the art and architecture along the way.
The route starts at Saint Peter’s Basilica, where you can see the famous Swiss Guards, who help – and sometimes hinder – Langdon in his quest. In their colourful striped uniforms, they add drama and a sense of grandeur to what is already an amazing site. In the novel, a conclave of cardinals gathers in the Sistine Chapel to elect a new pope. A visit to this chapel to admire Michelangelo’s stunning fresco of the Last Judgement is a must do when you are in Rome.