Our last scheduled tour of the trip was the Colosseum. We met up with our group and once again breezed past the long lines. It was totally worth the expense not to have to wait in the sun. Our guide was a Roman native who was passionate about his city and its history which made for an excellent and informative tour.
The Colosseum was fantastic and better than I’d expected.
From the Colosseum we visited the Forum and Palantine hill which were also very cool. Being in the Forum, you almost couldn’t hear the city, and it was easy to feel like you’d stepped back in time.
It was such a fun day! Afterwards, we had a little lunch snafu and ended up with the worst pizza I’ve seen in my life. It was totally raw in the middle. Yuck. From them, we decided to stick with what we knew and returned to the first pizza place we visited and were not disappointed. After our second pizzas, we had more coffee. Having learned I’m not a fan of espresso, I switched to cappuccino and was not disappointed.
That’s Nutella on top.
That night, we decided to try a Roman aperitivo which is basically wine, beer or cocktails and apps eaten early in the evening since dinners are eaten pretty plan. Upon another Yelp recommendation, we headed over to Trastavere which was kind of a hike from our hotel but ended up being such a neat place. It was definitely the cool part of the city with much fewer tourists and tons of young people. The restaurants and bars all looked great and fun, so we just picked one, and it was great. We had wine and a ton of apps while people watching on the cute street.
The original plan was to eat dinner later but we were kind of full and kind of drunk, so we decided to just start back towards our hotel and see what we saw. This ended up being probably the most fun night of the trip. We stopped into a little bakery (still open after 9pm!) and bought a couple mini pizzas and two giant chocolate croissants. I got to practice my meager Italian as we were out of the main areas of the city where mostly everyone speaks English. It was kind of fun to be semi-understood! We bought a giant beer from a corner store and plopped down on some steps to enjoy our bounty!
We walked on and found an outdoor movie screening! We couldn’t understand a word, but we sat and watched a while.
Before we finally got to our hotel (after stopping for more gelato obviously) we found some ruins closed to the public and totally full of cats! It was kind of the best thing ever.
So yeah, that was probably the best Italian day we had. Everything was just fun and perfect. It was a great miss of touristy excitement and unplanned fun. I just loved it. The rest of the trip was pretty great too…