Touring Italy

Rolling green hills
Tuscany Views

Our friends flew into Rome and explored the Amalfi Coast and the Vatican over a few days before we arrived. We quickly caught up to their relaxed vacation mode. We were so happy to see friends from home, and these are the first friends from the US to come visit us.

With 24 hours in Rome, we started right away to see the sights. At least, we saw sights in between wonderful, relaxing, delicious meals. It is funny to sit at a café table in a narrow street while cars go by just inches from the diners. We visited the Pantheon, the Spanish Steps, and Trevi Fountain, wandering through squares and markets, admiring fountains and statues. The best statue is the brooding, hooded Giordano Bruno in Campo de’ Fiori, in the place where he was executed. While we were wandering, we had the excitement of seeing a street fight break out between a bicyclist and a driver. Bike and car were abandoned, and whatever road rule had been broken was passionately and loudly discussed with pushing and shoving on the street. Probably a show put on for the tourists.😜

Tours in Tuscany

Fabulous Florence

Florence is a wonderful city, full of art and architecture, history, shopping, and of course the wonderful Italian food that we had throughout the country. Besides sleeping through an earthquake one night, and finding that our Airbnb apartment was 72 stairs up, we really enjoyed this special city.

We visited the Duomo, the fourth-largest Cathedral in Europe. Also the Uffizi Gallery, a wonderful art museum, and Galleria dell’Accademia, which holds Michelangelo’s David. With perfect weather, we gathered some supplies and had a picnic dinner of charcuterie and wine in a park setting one evening. When the sun set, we had magnificent nighttime views over Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo.

Sometimes in Italy you will find your breakfast to be a tiny coffee and a small piece of pizza. Or coffee and a croissant. But at Caffe Concerto Paszkowski, on the Piazza della Repubblica in Florence, we were so happy to find a hearty breakfast with avocado toast and eggs, even pancakes.

Bomb Squad in Venice

On our last night in Venice, we wound our way through a narrow street from dinner back to our Airbnb. We were stopped at a bridge and told we couldn’t cross, it was closed. We turned around, but only went a few steps before a huge bang rang out, ricocheting off the stone walls all around us.

Looking around, we were waved to come back, the bridge was open now. The bomb squad had found an abandoned backpack, and blew it up.

At that point, we ducked into Inishark Irish Pub to have a pint and settle the nerves.

Pint of Guinness

We saw a street fight in Rome, experienced an earthquake in Florence, and heard the bomb squad in action in Venice. Most of all, we enjoyed wonderful sights, foods, and experiences on a relaxing tour of Italy in the company of wonderful friends.

Rob and Barbara in Gondola


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