24 Hours in Rome, Italy

 

For spring break this year I decided to go on a trip through three countries in Europe. After my travels I have learned many things and hopefully sharing some of my stories will help you in your future travels. Over the next few weeks I will post about all the exciting cities I visited. To start the trip off, I went to the city that was #1 on my list…Rome, Italy.

I had a combination of the worst and best timing for my trip to Rome. On one hand I had perfect timing because I was in Rome for the first Sunday of the month. Why is this important you might ask… well… every first Sunday of the month a majority of Rome’s major attractions are free. That’s right. Free. I was able to go to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill without spending anything.

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But, on the other hand I was in Rome on Easter Sunday. It was, to say the least, very busy. While I was there Pope Francis blessed the city and it was very exciting to be in the city during this time. Unfortunately, due to the festivities the Vatican was closed while I was there. This was very disappointing as this was one of the main things I had planned to see. However, Rome did not disappoint and after lots of walking and yummy gelato, I still feel like I had the experience of a lifetime.

 

The Colosseum:

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The Colosseum is actually quite large. The line to get in is even larger. I waited for about an hour and a half to get into the Colosseum (which actually wasn’t that bad considering how many tourists were there). And once I was inside I had exactly 2 minutes to take my pictures on the lower platform. And yes… you really have only two minutes. They sent us out on the main platforms in groups and guards timed each group and ushered us off quickly once our time was up. Don’t let this discourage you though, after moving from the lower platform you can go to the other side of the Colosseum and take as many pictures as you want. I do believe there is a time limit of an hour for this part but I’m not certain.

The wait was worth it and next time I want to take the guided tour that takes you through the underground area (as pictured below).

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The Roman Forum and Palatine Hill:

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The Roman Forum was much larger then I had expected. This attraction was also free for me but I did have to have a ticket. This ticket was given to me free of charge when I entered the Colosseum. If you are traveling on a different day then the first Sunday you can buy a joint ticket for the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and the Palatine Hill on the Rome tourist website. These three attractions are located next to each other and it took me the whole day to view everything. For ticket prices and more information about the tourist attractions available in Rome please visit: https://www.coopculture.it/en/ticket.cfm?office=Foro%20Romano&id=4

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Palatine Hill stands approximately 40 meters above the Roman Forum and is a great place to get panoramic photos. You use the same entrance to get into Palatine Hill as you do to see the Roman forum. The hill also has a garden and several beautiful statues.

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Rome was beautiful and the architecture on the buildings was stunning. However, there are a lot of tourist, so if you are planning to see multiple attractions in a day make sure to pre-book tickets when possible. This will save you time in the lines and will allow you to see more amazing things.

I hope you found this article helpful and if you have any questions comment below. Thanks and Happy Travels!

 

**Disclaimer: I am not responsible for content on external websites accessed through the link provided.

A Weekend at the Isle of Skye (Part 2)

 

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The adventurous weekend at the Isle of Skye continues! Day 2 was filled with cute towns, gorgeous landscapes, and mythical rivers. The day began with rain, but I didn’t let that get me down, I was in Scotland after all. We waved goodbye to Kyleakin and started our day by stopping at River Sligachan.

Sligachan Bridge and River:

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Legend has it that if you dip your face in the river Sligachan for seven seconds you will be blessed with the gift of eternal youth and beauty. So, of course I did it because…why not? The bridge over the river was built in the 1820’s and is a great lookout point to view The Cuillins which are a range of mountains. There is also a place where there is a vast display of rock piles. If you feel so inclined you can also add your own rock pile to the collection.

**Disclaimer: use caution if you decide to dip your head in the river. The rocks are slick, the water is cold, and the river is fast moving.

Old Man of Storr:

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This rock formation is the most famous landmark of the Isle of Skye.  The Old man of Storr towers 50m high from a steep hill. You can walk up to the lookout out point but be warned it is a strenuous walk. The trail is all up hill and is steep in some areas. However, the views at the top of the hill are stunning and from the lookout point you can also view Loch Fada and Loch Leathan. In the picture above, the Old Man of Store in the rock formation in the background

Kilt Rock and Mealt Fall:

Kilt rock, named because the rock formation resembles pleats in a kilt, is a beautiful sea cliff in northeast Trotternish on the Isle of Skye. At the same lookout point you can see Mealt Falls. I will admit that at first, I did not see the falls even though they were right in from of me. To see the falls, you have to look down and I was so distracted from looking at Kilt Rock that I didn’t see the falls until a fellow traveler pointed it out to me.

Lealt Gorge and Lealt Fall:

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This lookout point is beautiful and displays the gorge and waterfall. There is a path that you can take but use caution. There are steep cliffs and in the rain the path can be slick. Be smart and stay safe. That being said the views were spectacular.

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For lunch we stopped at the picturesque town of Portee. This town is famous for its multicolored buildings that have been featured on many advertisements and postcards. The town hosts a variety of eateries, including a Fish and Chips shop located by the water. It is also home to the Royal Hotel which was the meeting place of Flora McDonald and Bonnie Prince Charles in 1746.

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The Isle of Skye is a wonderful weekend destination for those wanting to see cute little towns and the rugged landscape of Scotland. I hope you found this article helpful and if you have questions feel free to leave a comment. Thanks for reading and Happy Travels!

 

***Disclaimer: I am not a professional travel agent and caution should always be used before traveling to a new country or place. Travelers should seek professional assistance before traveling. All historical facts were learned during the tour. I am not a historian and all historical facts should be confirmed before using them.