A Travellerspoint blog

Day 4 - Travelling to Florence

what a gongshow...

So we were up at 9:00am today, checking out of our hostel bright and early and getting ready to head to Venice. It would be no understatement to say that neither Kristin nor I were ready to leave the beautiful city of Rome or the new friends we had made there. But we caught our first Eurorail train of the trip and it was quite the adventure in and of itself. Turns out we ended up getting off at the wrong stop in Florence, and long story short, after a bus ride into the city and an hour and a bit of walking around aimlessly ( with huge backpacks on I might add) we found the hostel. Only to find that the hostel we were at had moved. So we waited fo 20 mins until the owner came to find us and walk us another 20 mins to the right hostel where we climbed up 5 flights of stairs (still with 30lb bags on our backs) and finally were able to crash. Post adventure trek however, Florence is beautiful. Very pedestrian oriented and very very typical European architechture. We will hoever have more to say tomorrow when we actually get the chance to explore a bit more. Take care and love you all!
-Kristin and Kare.

Posted by Kris.Kare 09:08 Comments (0)

Day 3

Sorry for the late update! It's been a very busy (and eventful!) two days, and we didn't get a chance to tell you about our Day 3 adventures...
So yesterday we did the Colliseum and the Roman Forum. WOW is the simplest way to describe it! We took the metro, and as we walked out the station, we were greeted by the Colliseum right in front of us across the street. We were able to skip the lines to get in by buying our ticket down a couple blocks at the entrance to the Roman Forum, where there was no line, (thank you Rick Steves!) We went with two awesome girls that we had met the day before (both from the Vancouver area as well) so it was really fun to be able to hang out with some other people.
None of us were too excited about the Roman Forum, and figured it would be a few piles of ruins overgrown with grass. Were we ever wrong! It was amazing. Absolutely amazing. I won't even try to describe it to you, so you'll just have to wait until we get some more pictures up. (which may be a while...we just got into Florence; our hostel doesn't have internet and it costs over €4 for one hour...that being said, we won't be on much for the next couple of days) We spent a few hours exploring the ruins, and then left to meet up for lunch with one of the girl's we were with, stepmom and brother.
We went to this little restaurant hidden in a little alley about 15 minutes away from the Colliseum and 5 minutes from the Pantheon. It was delicious! And I was quite proud of myself...I tried a traditional Roman dish, OX-TAIL in a tomato sauce! It was actually very good and tasted a bit like stewing beef, though it was next to impossible to get it off the bone/cartilage, so I ended up picking it up and eating it with my hands which consequently somehow resulted in sauce all down the sleeve of my white (and only) sweater. I complemented it with a plate of roasted red peppers in oil and seasonings. The meal was mucho bene! Kerry had a plate of ravioli which was incredible as well. I would highly recommend the restaurant, it was fantastic (thank you Rick Steves again!)
Overall though, it was a long day...we left around 10:30 and didn't get home until after 7. Shortly after 9, we did a night walking tour of the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain. They were beautiful too.
Anyways, my internet time is just about to expire. We might get a chance to get on again while we're here in Florence, but there's a good possibility it won't be until we reach Venice (which will be on Sunday) Hope all is well back home, and we're starting to miss everyone..a little bit! Write again soon.


oh and just an interesting side note that I know Mom wanted to know... gas in Rome was €1.31/litre! So no complaining about the $1.25 back home!

Posted by Kris.Kare 08:41 Archived in Italy Comments (2)


random shots of Rome


Posted by Kris.Kare 02:16 Archived in Italy Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Day 2

The Pope and Vatican City

rain 15 °C

So today was pretty much amazing.
Kristin and I got up at the crack of dawn aka 8:00am for breakfast and then left for "La Piazza Reppublico", where we were meeting up with a tour group to see the Vatican. We saw the Pope and toured the Vatican city, including The Sistine Chapel and St.Peter's Basilica. Our tour guide's name was Tad ( he introduced himself as either Rad Tad or Tadpole...goodtimes), and he was pretty entertaining and informative. We learned a great deal about Renaissance and Baroque periode art (Kendall and Ash you would have died!) and then we walked through the various corridors and chapels that make up the Vatican city.
There are not even words to describe what we saw today. I wouldn't even know where to begin to explain to the beauty of the art we saw. The Sistine chapel, the Basilica and well... the entire city, was breathtaking. Kristin and I barely spoke the entire time we were there, we were so enraptured with what we were seeing.

Before we even got inside however, We went at 11 am this morning to St.Peter's square, where we we blessed by the Pope along with thousands of other people, and then went and stood in line for the next 2 hours in the pouring rain (yes...it rained), before entering the city. We finished at around 5:00pm and headed back to our hostel by way of the city Metro, Italy's (much cleaner) version of the Sky Train.
When we got back both Kristin and I layed out our clothes to dry a bit and crashed for a much needed power nap ( goodtimes!). We stopped to grab a bite to eat for dinner at a little pizzeria on the corner, and now we're going to see about maybe doing some exploring with some fellow backpackers. Hope all is well and we will talk to you soon!
Love and hugs,
Kare and Kristin.

Posted by Kris.Kare 01:15 Archived in Italy Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Day 1- Part two

overcast 20 °C

So we have nearly reached the end of our first day in Italy, and although we have done one update today already, we thought we might as well let you know how the day finished off.
After finishing our last entry, we decided to go and do a bit of exploring of the city. Within about ten minutes of leaving the hostel we found ourselves face to face with an incredible old brick church and Basilica. Across the street from this was a gorgeous fountain, and some of the most beautiful architechture we had ever seen! Kristin and I took a few pictures of what we thought were the Spanish steps (they werent but they were still beautiful) and then chased some pidgeons around the piazza before sitting down for lunch. After lunch, we decided to venture back to the hostel for a power nap so we could be well rested to continue exploring this evening. Today was a stat holiday in Italy as it is their labour day so there are a number of things including a major concert happening around the city tonight.
Roma is amazing, the weather is warm and the buildings are beautiful. We found ourselves a little caught off guard however by the extent our the language barrier. Considering the amount of tourism attracted to Rome, we had assumed that functioning in English would not be an issue...wrong. A weak attempt at ordering a drink in a cafe in Italian taught us that Italian was not quite as close to Spanish or French as we might have hoped. Not to worry though, we were able to struggle through using our phrase book and a number of stupdi looking hand gestures.
We have met a number of people in our hostel, including our roommates, who are from southern Spain, as well as people from Australia, USA, etc...
Finally, after enjoying or first slices of truely Italian pizza (amazing) we are just about ready to call it a night, as the jet lag is beginning to kill us.
Write again soon!
Love and hugs,
Kristin and Kerry.

Posted by Kris.Kare 12:13 Archived in Italy Tagged backpacking Comments (2)

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