EuroAdventure Day 19: Off to Roma!

(posted by Emily) 

Monday 14 July 
Daily Step Count: 26, 729

Monday morning was another early one for us. I was sad to leave Nice, but excited to see what Rome had in store. We truly loved our time in Nice.

Rick had done the research about the best way to get to Rome, and we opted to catch a flight in order to save time. A train ride would have probably taken 7-8 hours, and the plane only took about 50 minutes. 

It was our first time on EasyJet, and overall, the experience was simple enough. We printed our own boarding passes, and had paid attention to the baggage allowance. It was amusing to watch people try to cram all of their things inside one bag, when they really had no clue what was going on. 

Our seats were at the rear of the plane, so we went out on to the tarmac to board. 

True to the strories we'd heard, the plane was one big advertisment for the items the airline was selling.

The legroom was a bit crowded, but we survived. Most amusing was this fellow in the black shirt who kept misting his face with water sporadically throughout the flight. 

When we arrived in Rome, we picked up our Roma Passes from the stand in the terminal. The Roma Pass is put together by the city of Rome, and allows you free access to the public transit within the city, free admission to 2 museums/attractions, and serves as a "front of the line" pass at any attraction you choose to visit. The pass comes with a map and a listing of all the museums/attractions you can go to, and a code to dowload the free app, too. 

There are two main ways to get into Rome from the airport--either on the high speed train or on a bus. Unfortunately, the train was not running on the day we came in, so the bus it was. We ended up waiting about 40 minutes for the bus to arrive, and then drove in to the city. Not sure how long it took, as I pulled out a book for the ride.

waiting for the bus to pick us up
We arrived at the main train station, and got on a city bus to get to our hotel. It didn't take us exactly where we wanted to go, but with the help of our map we found our hotel. We are staying at the Hotel Indigo here, which is literally brand new. I am pretty sure it just opened in May. They still have some kinks to work out, as the pool/sauna/jacuzzi/Roman Baths area of the spa was closed for the duration of our visit, and the wifi is only reliable in the lobby, but the property itself is beautiful. 

front of the hotel
library space in the lobby
our room

After checking in and spending some time in the lobby with the wifi, we headed out to one of the vegan spots we had researched before coming to Rome--CamBio Vita. It was definitely time to eat--other than a chanticler in Nice, we hadn't eaten anything all day and it was going on 2pm. We really enjoyed wandering the streets, and seeing the beautiful architecture. 

love all the cobblestone
CamBio Vita had some lunch options, but we opted to eat lunch at a small resturant just across the way. We had tomato bruschetta, a veggie pizza (no cheese), and pesto linguine. We did have to send the pizza back, as it came out with cheese the first time, but the food was great. Gluten free is clearly out the window for us on this part of the trip!

Rick's new favorite restaurant

While we were eating, we noticed a man walking his pet down the small street where we were. Upon closer inspection, we realized the pet was a pig! Apparently, she must be a local because all the men at the restaurant knew her, and our waiter brought out some chopped tomato to feed her. The chef found her good spot, and she enjoyed a nice belly scratch. 

After lunch, we popped in to CamBio Vita to get the lay of the land. They sell vegan cakes and baked goods, gelato, and a few select lunch items. We opted for gelato, and tried vegan stracciatella (vanilla and chocolate chunks), vegan pistachio, and vegan caffe. My goal is to eat gelato every day in Italy, at least once. I'll keep track of the flavors we try, too!

With our first priority being food, our second priority was the Colosseum. Most museums in Rome are closed on Monday, but the Colosseum is one of the few exceptions. 

Along the way, we passed a few additional interesting sites, and lots of street artisans. It blows me away that you can just be walking down a major city street, and then out of nowhere, there are ruins thousands of years old right next to you. 

We were both really excited to see the site, and enjoyed reading all of the information about the stadium's construction and uses. When we first walked in, it seemed sort of small to me, but I think that is due to the number of large football stadiums I've been in in my lifetime. The main floor/stage area of the Colosseum is not quite as big as a football field, but once we got to the top, it definitely felt larger. 

Game tokens and dice excavated from the site--Roman people would bet and play games in their seats while the fights were going on. 
ancient graffiti--etchings of the gladiators and their names

For Team SUTA - Live or die? Die. 

After the Colosseum, we decided to go over to the ancient site right across the way--Palatine Hill, where the city was founded, and the Roman Forum.

fleur watch!

the have excavated the ancient village of huts where Romulus lived, and founded the city of Rome 
view from the top of Palatine Hill

One of my favorite things about Rome is the abundance of cold water available all the time. If the water is running, and within reach, it is safe to drink. There are fountains like these all around the city, where you can fill a water bottle, or plug the end to use the fountain hole on the top of the pipe, which will make an arc of water for you to drink from. 

After Palatine Hill, we headed down to the site of the Roman Forum

We were pretty worn out after all of our sightseeing, so we took a few minutes to rest our legs. 

On the way back to the hotel, it started to rain. Luckily, we ducked under cover of a building and waited it out. The thunderstorm passed quickly, and we found a comfy spot in the lobby to use the internet for a bit. 

We went out a bit later for a snack and some wandering. We saw Castel San Angelo and the dome of St. Peter's Basilica before grabbing a quick pizza. 

the basilica
the restaurant where we stopped for pizza

Looking forward to a day to wander in Rome on Tuesday!

Gelato Flavor Inventory:



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