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colloseum and an on again off again fear of heights

colloseum and an on again off again fear of heights

Old Jan 17th, 2008, 01:37 AM
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colloseum and an on again off again fear of heights

My husband very much wants to go inside the colloseum on our next trip to Rome. I have agreed, but wonder if there will be problems for a person who never knows when the irrational fear of heights will strike (me). I was able to enjoy the Eiffel Tower, Montparnasse Tower, Empire State Building, etc. I was struck with anxiety at Sacre Coeur dome and couldn't make myself do Notre Dame. What is the Colloseum like?
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 02:09 AM
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hi opaldog,

well strangely, there are very few heights at all in the colosseum, so far as i remember.

when you get inside [don't forget to buy your tickets at the palatine hill offfice inside the forum to avoid the queue] there is a very large ground floor area to walk around.

after that, you have the choice to get the lift or take the stairs up to the first floor, where you can walk around the upper levels. again, no heights as such, unless you choose to go to the parts where you can walk around the edge [which were closed for renovation when we were there, i think].

so you can stil enjoy the colosseum, without having to worry about heights.

good luck,

regards, ann
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 02:13 AM
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I deal with vertigo ( you won't see me on the top of the Eiffel tower with my husband and child!) but I do not think you should have any trouble with the Colosseum.

It is not even that tall.( Now the Pisa tower might be something you would like to skip like me)

You might not like to go to the top tiers, but you can still really enjoy the Colosseum.

I have managed to get through many things on this 16 months of travel which have pushed on my vertigo button, but some I did leave to my husband and child since they do not deal with that.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 07:02 AM
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I didn't have any problems with the Colosseum but the The Empire State Building was a nightmare for me.I would not even consider the Eiffel Tower with my vertigo.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 08:42 AM
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I get it sometimes, too. You'll be fine at coliseum. Ditto poster's comment about buying tickets at Palatine Hill office instead of at coliseum.

Don't climb the duomo in Florence- -first you get claustrophobic in the stairs, then suddenly gripped with fear of heights as you (finally) reach end of narrow stairway, only to open a door and be outside on roof!
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 09:02 AM
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If you walk to the outside rim wall you can look straight down so I would (and do) skip that. The seat areas in the arena slope so there is no drop off there.

Unfortunately I get the sudden fear of some heights too so I have molded my trips accordingly, alas.

I wouldn't even consider the Eiffel Tower or Empire State building.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 09:11 AM
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I don't think that you will have any problems but if you do-keep your eyes on the cheezy gladiator types trying to get you to spend big money on a picture with them and you will forget any worries. Too funny!
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 10:12 AM
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Thanks all. Glad to know others share this crazy and irrational fear. My Sacre Coeur experience was the worst; not only heights but claustraphobia, too. Descending was bad; you are on the outside of the dome with no railing, so to speak. That is one of many things I find so different about sightseeing in Europe. No railings, fences, warnings, etc. Not too many places in the US that would allow you to go up as high as the second tier on the Eiffel Tower and find the railings are only waist high. Anyone could jump off or get that strange sensation of wanting to. The colloseum sounds doable; I'll be going.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 10:53 AM
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< sightseeing in Europe. No railings, fences, warnings, etc.

YES! It is VERY different in Europe in this way. I have mobility challenges and it is amazing how few places or stairs have railings. I often have to use my husband as my railing!!

It is like this everywhere from Paris to the Acropolis in Athens....we have grown accustom to it now.

My daughter was a VERY active 5 year old when we started our 16 month ( so far) trip in Europe & I have been scared to death sometimes for her.

We went to a restaurant with a family with a 2yo at a restaurant with a ocean view and no guard at all from the cliff straight down...right next to the table. YIKES! I was a nervous wreck the whole time, as of course she was always attracted to the edge.

They shoot fire crackers right next to children on their festivals, or have the kids right by the feet of donkeys and horses, zip by fast on narrow streets with motorbikes ( often with kids on them..no helmet of course), smoke right next to babies,,,,,it is a whole different world as far as safety issues.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 11:15 AM
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I still have in my mind the sight of kids running and playing tag on the very edge of cliffs down from the Cliffs of Moher. I shudder when I remember it.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 01:12 PM
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Hi WTnow,

well, since you mention it, we thought it pretty funny when we were warned about getting off the bus at Disneyworld. and about all the myriad things that might happen to us if we stepped outside our cars or houses.

this dread of the world and its strange properties [like gravity] seems to have spread - when you enter Bristol airport [airside], they tell you to be careful as there are steps. which are quite visible.

no-one compels anyone to jump over the parapet at the Eiffel Tower - and you couldn't fall over it accidentally. parents are expected to exercise some vigilance over their children - are we to fence in every canal in Venice? Brugge? Birmingham? [which has more canals than both of them I believe].

regards, ann
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 01:26 PM
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dear opaldog,

I don't like heights, and am impressed you went up the Eiffel tower as even my non-fearful daughter wanted no part of that ride...

The Colosseum is a real midget compared to the other places you mentioned. I had absolutely no qualms at any point of the tour we had there.

There is no area where you would be compelled to peer over a precipice and it's really not that tall anyway.

I find I have better and worse days and I allow myself to turn around and head down or out if a tower climb or trudge underground (I could not do the catacombs tour past the first 5 minutes) is feeling not fun to me.

I think being in control is part of it - crowds and lack of control heighten the anxiety.
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Old Jan 17th, 2008, 02:38 PM
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I actually prefer the European way of allowing people to make choices about leaning over railings and such at high places. I wouldn't do it but like that others can if they so choose. I do think that we (country, government) have become so very careful about everything for others.
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