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Rome: Pantheon

The Pantheon is, by far, the best preserved ancient building in Rome. Built over two thousand years ago as a Temple to the Roman Gods, it was converted to a Catholic church in 609.

Boasting the world's largest unreinforced concrete dome, it has an oculus in its centre that lets in light to the Pantheon. It also lets in rain, too, which drains away down (almost) invisible holes and keeps the building cool.

Nowadays the Pantheon is filled with tombs and tourists - which includes the tomb of Raphael - and Mass takes place every Saturday at 5pm, as well as on public holidays. 

Free to get into, as all churches are in Rome, keep a shawl in your bag if you're in Rome when the weather is warm. That way you can wander around in your shorts and cover up temporarily whenever you want to pop inside a church - everyone's happy! x

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