"When in Rome, do as the Romans do" - Ambrose
Well, I never said these blog posts would be frequent. In fact I considered forgetting the blog all together... And then I went to Italy. A last minute decision (as per usual) but a great one at that. Not only did I get to explore a new country, eat as much delicious food as possible and see some breathtaking views. I also witnessed one of the most magical weddings of all times (way to set the bar reeeeal high guys) surrounded by the best of friends. #winning
A bit of a blur. I arrived Friday evening thanks to all possible modes of transportation. Lucky for me several friends awaited nearby at Fiaschetteria Marini a restaurant within walking distance from Roma Termini. Although it didn't look like much from the outside the food was incredible! Highly recommend the pasta and the Caesar salad with chicken, simply made but packed full of flavor. Up next the Il Vittoriano (aka Altare della Patria). If you're looking for a spectacular view of the city this is the place to be. On the back side of the monument is an elevator and for €7 you can see it all! The following day we had a few hours to roam the city *pun intended*. The meandering streets full of people are captivating and suddenly appearing before the Trevi Fountain or the Pantheon make it unlike any city in the world.
Up next → Tuscany! Train being the obvious means of transportation. Although it may sometimes be a longer journey then driving, the train system in Italy is relativity cheap and user friendly. For all information use Trenitalia, most people recommended booking ahead online, however, I bought tickets the day of at the stations several times.
We arrived at Montepescali (nearest town via train to our destination) to discover there are no taxi's... My mistake, I didn't read the fine print. We're standing on the corner of this tiny beautiful town and out of nowhere the groom drives by! It's a pretty surreal experience to be in a remote town in a foreign country and have a friend drive by. Thankfully we were rescued.
The next several days were spent in and around La Pescaia. Two of the days we ventured out to the nearby seaside town of Castiglione della Pescaia. The bride and groom had organized 'A Day by the Sea' which was much needed for most travelers arriving for the wedding from all over of the world. We drank, and we ate, and we swam, and we drank. Success!
Majority of the guests attending the wedding stayed at La Pescaia Resort, which happened to be the wedding venue. A full service family run estate tucked in among an olive grove. Basically heaven. It felt and looked like a dream! You absolutely MUST stay at this incredible place if ever in Tuscany.
FIRENZE (aka Florence)
With only one day to spare before heading back to Rome, Florence made the most sense. And what a great decision that was! We wandered the streets drinking countless cappuccino's, looking in numerous leather stores (eventually making purchases) and ended up at the L'Osteria di Giovanni restaurant for dinner, a recommendation from friends. Reservations are advised but lucky for us they had availability in the wine cellar, which is exactly where we wanted to be! You walk through the restaurant, down the stairs (past the kitchen) through a wine hallway and into the cellar where a handful of tables are set up side by side. A perfect and authentic place for dinner for our one and only night in Florence!
One final night in Rome before flying out. The morning of my departure I woke up bright and early and ventured down to the Colosseum. I hadn't been able to see it the day I arrived and as far as I am concerned it is THE must see in Rome. Getting there by 8:10am was a smart move (again thanks to a friends recommendation). The doors open at 8:30am and I was inside shortly after. I did not pre-book my ticket and was thankful for that seeing as how the pick-up line was longer then the line to buy tickets then and there! The first 10 minutes inside were incredible!! I was able to get several photo's without a single person in them. Within 20 minutes there are hundreds of people taking selfies and walking around frantically with audio guides. Additionally I manged to check out Palatine Hill although is was very short lived due to my departing flight.
There is a direct train from Roma Termini to the Fiumicino airport (FCO) which takes a total of 32mins and costs €14. Also if you're looking for a snack before getting on the train we discovered the Chef Express in the Roma termini. It looks like a fast food restaurant but the sandwiches are freshly made and delicious!
Until next time Italy! Because there will DEFINITELY be a next time.
→ Sea you later x