Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Finale

The last stop on our trip was three days in Rome and we were both so excited to finally get there! After a five hour train ride to the Termini Station, we caught another metro to the Lepanto station, near where we were staying at the B&B Fiocca. About a five minute walk from the station, Andrea (a man) was waiting for our arrival. Our room was perfect, roomy with two beds and free wireless internet! We quickly dropped our stuff off and headed back out to Ancient Rome where we were meeting back up with Emily and Lauren.

Once near the Ancient Center, we headed straight for the Colosseum. We didn’t plan to, but we ended up stumbling upon a great guided tour of the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. We were absolutely amazed by the sheer grandeur that was once Ancient Rome. Our tour was great and lasted about three hours. Afterwards, we wondered over to the Campidoglio and then ate dinner near the huge Victor Emmanuel monument. We were exhausted from our day of traveling and headed back to our hotel for the night.

The next morning, after eating a very American breakfast of coffee ad cereal provided by Andrea, we met up with Emily and Lauren near the Trevi Fountain. Though beautiful, taking in the Trevi Fountain did not take long and after about 15 minutes, we headed over to the Pantheon, the best preserved of all the ancient buildings in Rome. Afterwards, we wondered around that area for a bit and then went to the Piazza Navona. Bernini’s Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi is pretty amazing and the atmosphere around this piazza is great. We decided to have lunch there and had some of the best Pizza of our trip! After lunch, we wondered over to the Spanish Steps and window shopped around the designer stores before heading off to the Vatican!
At the Vatican, Ashley and I took a tour of the museums and the Sistine Chapel. It really is absolutely amazing to see it in person. St. Peter’s Basilica was more than we could have imagined and we spent about half an hour wondering around inside just looking at all the amazing works inside the church. We were pretty exhausted after our tour so we headed home. That night, we went on this really hilarious pub crawl and pretty much witnessed every reason why Europeans dislike Americans. After about three hours, we got bored and headed home.

On our last day in Rome, we went to the Borghese Gallery where we saw Bernini’s Apollo and Daphne, one of the most amazing pieces I have seen in Europe. Though small, this gallery is definitely worth the trip as it houses some very famous works. As we had pretty much done everything on our Roman Agenda, we spent the rest of the afternoon wondering around the Villa Borghese and the surrounding areas. That night we met up with Lauren and Emily again near the Spanish Steps for a nice dinner and desert. That concluded our amazing trip to Italy and our last stop before Spain.

We are very excited to spend a night in Madrid to rest before we meet our host family and the other people in our program on Monday. This trip has gone by so fast…we can’t believe it is over. And as we probably won’t have as much free time on trains and at night, we probably won’t be blogging as much. Arrivederci!

- J&A

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