In May, Kevin graduated from pharmacy school. We decided that his graduation was a great excuse to celebrate by taking a trip. After all, I do have that 5 passport stamps rule.
We arrived in Rome on a Monday morning. From the airport we took a train to the Roma Termini, the main railway station in Rome, and walked to our bed and breakfast. We used airbnb to book our room, and we could not have been more pleased. The building was centrally located, the room was well decorated, and our host was very friendly (he kept calling Kevin my boyfriend….I’m hoping it is because we look too young to be married).
Since we were only spending 2 days in Rome, we hit the ground running. We started our day at Palentine Hill. The Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, and the Colosseum are located in the same area and all three share the same admission ticket. Starting at Palentine Hill meant no waiting in line for tickets to the Colosseum. (Thanks for the tip Amanda!)
Palentine Hill is where, according to tradition, Romulus founded Rome in 754 BC. The ruins are a romantic, scenic escape from the crowds — overgrown with ivy and dotted with clusters of magnificent parasol pines. The view of the city from the top of the hill is breathtaking.
Just at the base of Palentine Hill sits the Roman Forum. The large plaza of ancient government buildings and temples is captivating. There is so much to look at, yet so much to be imagined — the grandeur and the ruin.
From the Roman forum we ventured to the Colosseum. This iconic piece of history is nothing short of amazing. Hundreds of arches and tons of stone. Though the inside is fascinating, my favorite part of the Colosseum is the travertine facade that reflects in the Roman sun.
On our way from the Colosseum and to the Pantheon, we walked through the city and passed by a beautiful, unexpected white marble building called Altare della Patria. It is impossible not to be in awe of the intricate architecture of the building that is often referred to as the Wedding Cake.
We then stopped for our first taste of Italian gelato and made our way to the Pantheon. Tucked between buildings on a cobble stone street stands this windowless church with corinthian columns and an ocular dome.
Exhausted from walking more than 10 miles across the city that day, we finally decided to stop for a bite to eat. After a bit of research, we settled on La Rioni. We had been looking forward to eating there all day, and it did not disappoint. The outdoor table on side street was quintessential Rome. The service was friendly. The pizza was crisp. The company was perfect.