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Loreto, Assisi

After visiting Padua and Venice  in the previous travel post, we ended up in Loreto, where after some good breakfast at the hotel 
along with these awesome chocolatey biscutey things I picked up in Paris we set out to explore the famous church we saw last night. We walked to the church of Loretto where a few friends (priests) of our parish priest were waiting for us, and they explained the legend surrounding the church of the Black Madonna in Loreto. 
Legend has it that this is the house of the Holy Family where Jesus grew up.
Apparently there was some pillaging going on in Nazareth, during the reign of some ancient figure, and to avoid damage to the house of the Holy Family, angels carried the structure across the skies and placed it in Loretto in Italy, as depicted on this stone plaque. (I know... I don't know what to make of it either. But it all depends on you, what you believe, you make it your reality.)
So after walking around, we went to the underground chapel and a mass was celebrated there. 
The statue of the black Madonna (the church caught fire ages ago, and she turned black, so they call her the black madonna)
Pretty intricate gates in the church...
Ornate ceilings...
The light was creating all kinds of effects in this beautiful church...
So after visiting Loreto, we got on our bus and travelled towards Assisi. 
This is the church of St. Francis in Assisi, where the tomb of St. Francis is literally chained and clamped down here, in this chapel, to prevent the saint's body from being stolen, apparently it has happened many before...
The church constructed by St. Francis of Assisi
The upper church above the main church
The facade of the church built by St. Francis of Assisi
The Hills of Assisi
Beautiful streets of Assisi
A cafe...
Pots like this sprout out all over the place...
Pretty...
Walking in Assisi was like stepping into a postcard, this little hilltop region is picture perfect. Every nook and corner and cranny is aesthetically planned and decorated. It was the most beautiful place we visited on this trip, apart from Switzerland, of course.
Another pretty flowering plant...
Church of St. Clare...
More flowering plants...
Check out this door, the entrance and the flowering window above it...
Some cool dragon entrance decor...
Winding steps of Assisi
Looking down from Assisi
Got into the bus, drove for a while and stopped here for lunch...
Of Spaghetti
Chicken legs and
a tarty kind of sweet...
Then started on our drive to Rome...
Reached a quaint hotel on the way for dinner...
Pretty decor...
Shabby chic lamps and books..
A glass bottle filled with corks...
Our Indian broom stuck in a corner as decor...
Some more cute decor..
Some pasta for dinner
Vegetables and olives
Reached Hotel Roma Sud on the outskirts of Rome
Our room in Rome
Me and mom went to a shop nearby to buy drinking water and then I spotted this cold coffee cream churning away in a corner, so ordered one... awesome stuff. Then went back to our rooms and slept soundlessly for a few hours till Michael Bubble woke us up with his 'Home' song... 

Comments

mahesh said…
New Year good wishes to you and the family Karen.

Amazing pics and a lovely write-up on the visit. The Black Madonna is striking.

Wishing you a great year ahead!

Regards,
Mahesh

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