10 days in the sun and fun
11/16/2012 - 11/26/2012
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Italy is such an amazing country. We were there for 10 days straight in 4 different cities and I would not have done it any other way. I am not going to go too indepth on this one, after all, 10 days of shenanigans is quite a bit to write about.
The first day we arrived in Rome around 10 am after sitting through a grueling 9 hour night train ride from Ulm. It was brutal. I will never take a chair on a night train again, always front the 20 euro and get a bed.
Anywho, the first day was pretty legit. Since we had such an early start we roamed around Rome and found a nice place to eat some Italian pizza, which was really good. Pizza Diavola, its like spicy salami and fresh mozzarella. So good. So then we walked down to the Colosseum just to visit it sort of and by the time we got back that pretty much ended the day. This was all after we decided to get a nice Roman hair cut from a barber next to our hostel, it was the first haircut I have gotten away from mom cutting mine, and I think I will stay with the one person who does it best.
The second day in Rome was filled almost entirely of the Vatican, St. Peter's Basilica and the Sistine Chapel. We were able to find a nice tour guide with a ticket for the Basilica and Sistine Chapel for only 30 euro. It was a really nice tour and we got to see a lot of the museum that most people would not have even guessed. Shockingly when the Sistine Chapel was cleaned a few years back, a Japanese television station bought the exclusive rights to photos and media to the Sistine Chapel since they made such a vast donation for the cleaning, so sadly, I could not take any pictures while in the Chapel. It is absolutely beautiful tho. St. Peter's was amazing. To build a Basilica like St. Peter's in today's era, it would cost BILLIONS of dollars, easily into the hundreds of billions. The amount of marble, copper, brass, bronze and gold within the Basilica blew my mind. I was really pissed because my camera battery died like 5 minutes into the Basilica but what I got to see I will never forget. The artwork and architecture is amazing and easily the most beautiful building I have set foot into. Afterwards, we went to a really nice Italian restaurant and got a 3 course meal for like 16 euro. Ravioli, Veal Parmesan and gelato (italian ice cream).
When we got back to the hostel, we were pretty beat so we took a quick nap and then decided to go to a nice cafe and drink some cappuccino and have a cannoli. That was a lot of fun.
The last day we were in Rome we went and toured the Colosseum as well as the Roman Ruins. The Colosseum was an amazing place, and a huge feat of design and architecture. I was so impressed with how well preserved and sturdy it stood since its a couple thousand years old and has been through numerous wars. The pictures I took really do justice of just how big it really is. I stone work, the mock floor the put it, you could just sit there and imagine just what went on in the past during some of the big events that have taken place there. Afterwards, we toured the Roman ruins which were pretty interesting and showed a little bit of insight on how Rome look way back in the day. It was fairly breathtaking and very impressive to say the least.
On our fourth day, we left Rome in the morning and headed to Florence for the next 3 days of our trip. Florence was a smaller city compared to Rome but it was equally beautiful. The first day in town we walked around the entire city it seemed and saw all that we could so we could have a layout of the next few days. By this time in the trip we were already pretty tired so a lot of the trip we just relaxed, ate some good food and chilled in the hostel for a bit too. The second day in Florence we went to one of the museums close by the hostel and saw some major art work pieces as well as the statue of David. Of course, we couldnt take pictures of that either, which was disappointing because it was very impressive. Its hard to describe. The last day in Florence, we decided to take a quick train ride up to Pisa and see the Leaning Tower and tower the Cathedral of Pisa as well. Both were very impressive, the weather was beautiful and we even took a quick nap on the lawn in front of the Leaning Tower, it was a great day.
The next two days of the trip we stayed in Modena, Italy which is by Marenello where Ferrari is headquartered as well as Maserati. While 3 of the other guys toured Ferrari, the rest of us just chilled in Modena. There was not much to do, but it was a nice city to relax and take a few days off from heavy travel. We ate Thanksgiving Dinner in Modena, and it was fantastic. We had wine and beer, a 3 course meal with dessert. It was absolutely fantastic and by far the best Italian food I have ever had.
The last two days of our trip were spent in Venice, but it was sadly cut short when the train back to Ulm left half way through our last day so we left a little earlier than expected. The first day in Venice was spent primarily walking around Venice, eating some delicious food again and seeing all of the shops that Venice had. It has so many shops and little stores for being a smaller Italian city and near the water. The canals were awesome and everywhere throughout the island. Venice is known for its glass making so most of the shops had hand made glass pieces, statues, jewelry and other items, it was all very cool to see. The last day in Venice was spent seeing what we didnt see before like the town center and the main port of Venice as well.
All in all, Italy was my second favorite trip aside from golfing in Scotland. I wish I would have had more time to travel south to Sicily and some of the warmer cities, but the 4 I traveled to in 10 days were worth every minute in my book.