Rome in Italy is both known to have two sides of the coin as its facade because the city has both American and European cultures. Rome is considered to be one of the best and famous historical cities known around the globe. Amongst its neighbors, it is also one of the most unique in all of Europe. Rome cannot be visited and toured all in one day because it has so much to offer for the holidaymaker.
Rome’s main attraction is the Coliseum, but one of the most overlooked parts of the trip is trying to survive each time you cross the road. Cars and small motorcycle will never stop for you; you will just have to know proper timing and technique while crossing the bricked streets of the city.
Coffee shops are one of the thriving businesses in Rome. This is due to their great brews that stay unique and fresh unlike those American, London, French and Seattle coffee chains that all taste the same. Always look for Roman coffee while in Rome.
Obvious travel itinerary for your Rome visit is the Coliseum, Pantheon, Vatican City and the national monument along with its ruins. Film is a thriving art in Rome, too. Many artists do filming here so expect a busy film crew anywhere in the streets. Also Opera houses and performances are very abundant everywhere, so be sure to purchase your tickets a day ahead to save yourself of the burdens of lining up for tickets.
When: We went early September (right after Labor Day) and crowds were diminished but not dead. In late September/October is when the season is pretty much over.
+ Ideal times to visit, for milder weather, prices + crowds: April-June and September-early October. High season = CROWDS and higher prices
Flew straight into Athens and got on a connecting flight to Mykonos → Ferry to Santorini → Flight back to Athens → Home
Airlines used: Air Canada & Brussels Air for international and Aegean Airlines for the domestic flights
Ferry company: Hellenic Seaways I recommend booking as soon as the websites allow
+Mykonos: Hotel Palladium
+Santorini: Homeric Poems
+ Athens: Athens New Hotel
+ Mykonos: Arte-Italiana
+ Santorini: Skaros Fish Restaurant
Sights/Things to do:
• Beaches: Paradise Beach is a party beach with Cavo Paradiso dance club. A quieter beach is Platis Gialos but you may catch more celebrities here!
• Little Venice: a must do! Grab a restaurant here during the day for the picturesque views
• The windmills (Kato Myli): Great for picture taking and a quick sight
• Delos island: take a day trip to Delos island (catch one of the ferries by the new port
Thirteen bridges cross the river with the most famous being the pedestrian Charles bridge, built over 600 years ago. What you notice when walking across the bridge is the 30 statues of religious figures spaced out about 30 feet apart. Evidentially they were placed there in the 17th century to lead the masses to mass at the cathedral on the hill. On one end of the bridge is the Old Town Bridge Tower leading you to “Old Town.” It looks just like the entrance to the castle at Disneyland. It makes one wonder where Disney actually got his original ideas. We walked across the bridge both at night and day and stopped to enjoy the jazz musicians playing their terrific music. Zoé-Pascale, with her dancing soul, swayed to the music enjoying herself for all the world to see. After giving them 3 tips, we decided to buy their CD of Jazz music from the 20s. Her joy in giving money to the street musicians extends over to the beggars on the street. We could not pass any beggar without her wanting to give them money.
The man in front of us knelt down with his head touching the ground as though in prayer. In his hand was his hat, hoping that money will fall into it as though it is Manna from heaven. After a few moments, we gave Zoé-Pascale, 20 Kronen and she skipped happily to the beggar dropping the 20 Kronen in his cap. He lifted his head and nodded as though to say “Thank you”. After a few more beggars and Kronen, we tried to explain to Zoe-Pascale that we have to choose how and who to help as there are many people in need. Is it the blind woman playing the recorder, the beggar with the cap, or the animals in the shelters. Oh, to be so innocent and want to help others without any questions. In retrospect however, she did want to know how the blind woman would know how much money she actually earned. Good question, we said, and promptly went into another explanation. This is the joy of traveling with a young child!!!
A third of British Skiers and Boarders (350,000) now travel independently to the Alps, so its not something to be wary of anymore. One of the biggest developments in the ski industry in the last ten years has been the switch from large tour operators to smaller companies and independent travel. Here is how to do it best.
Your options are fairly simple: Planes, Trains, Auto mobiles… and Buses.
By Plane: Still the main route to the Alps, flying is often the cheapest and easiest way to do things IF you know how to get the best deals.
Early! The earlier the better, book it as soon as you can.
Even better, sign up to the airlines newsletters and they will tell you as soon as the new prices are released. This is when you get the £30 flights! – this happens in the summer, normally in July and August for the budget airlines.
If you can’t commit to booking early, then you can gamble on a last minute package deal. This has good and bad points; As well as some great low prices, it means that you can see where the snow is and hold out for those resorts; but of course your choices will be limited and you may not get the exact type of accommodation you wanted. But hey, that’s why its a gamble, and if you know what you’re doing and research well, then there’s no reason you can’t get a great deal.