November 20, 2011

Eurotrip 2011–Rome Recap


Eight crazy Americans, twelve days, four countries, five cities = Eurotrip 2011.

Upon flying into Rome to start our European adventure I was filled with excitement and a bit of nervousness as it was my first time overseas.  It is a strange feeling to think that you are going into the unknown and you don't  really know what to expect.  One word: AWESOME!




After leaving Orlando at 1pm on a Wednesday, meeting our other four group members in Montreal and flying through the night, we arrived in Rome around 10 am on Thursday morning.  With only the packs on our back, Eurotrip 2011 was underway.



We hopped on the Leonardo Express (the train into the city), turned on the iPad to find our street map and began walking the streets to locate our hotel (Hotel 2000 Roma).  Our trip of a lifetime was just beginning.

Day 1:

Hotel 2000 Roma was in a great location, although a little difficult to find.  Luckily we had read on TripAdvisor that this was the case, so we had eagle eyes.  We arrived a bit early to check in, but the innkeeper let us keep our luggage there while we went to get lunch and explore a bit.

First stop, Trevi Fountain.  It was only about a 5 minute walk from our Hotel and was bustling with activity.  Hearing the rushing water before we turned the corner was amazing.  We opted for lunch right around the square where we toasted with Peroni and chowed on some true Italian pizza. 

After lunch we had another hour to kill before we could get a much needed shower at the hotel, so we went in search for the Spanish Steps.  Very pretty, great view of the city, busy, and lots of locals selling touristy items.  Glad to have seen it, but not my favorite place. 




After checking into the hotel, catching a quick nap and washing my greasy hair, it was time for drinks and dinner.  We ventured out on foot and wandered upon the Pantheon. 

It was dusk and quite a beautiful scene.  We opted for some drinks at a restaurant about 100 ft. away from the 2000 year old building and it was so surreal.  I felt like we were on a a movie set. We sipped on Proseco, Lambrusco and Cafe Americano.  Amazing.



Dinner was at a fun restaurant, though pricey since it was right in the middle of the tourist area, in the Piazza Navona.  We dined in the middle of the square and had red wine stained teeth by the end of the meal.




After having a few drinks at one of the local hangouts, we ended the night stopping back by Trevi Fountain and tossing in a few coins to insure another trip back to Rome.  The fountain is a masterpiece at night.




Day 2:

Breakfast was included in our stay at the hotel.  Jelly filled croissants and Cafe Americano on a silver platter.  Adorable!



Day two was busy, busy, busy.  We headed out to St. Peter's Basilica and The Vatican for the first half of the day.  Vatican City is so much to take in.  After winding though the Vatican we ended in the Sistine Chapel.  There was no photography allowed, but it was breathtaking and a true masterpiece. 

After lunch it was time for St. Peter's.  I cannot even explain the massiveness of the altar and size of the Basilica.  More than I could have ever imagined and the pictures don’t do it justice.




Next, we trucked it all the way across town to the Colosseum.  My favorite part of Rome.  Breathtaking.





Since we hit all of the tourist areas for drinking and dining the night before, we opted for an "off the beaten path" approach. 

We found true Italian Trattorias and Pizzerias for drinks and dinner.  The house wine was flowing and great conversations ensued – as well as the birth of 21 questions!




Our two days in Rome flew by, but were spectacular, what an amazing city!

Next up: Venice

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