Roman Forum, Palatine Hill and the Colosseum – Rome – Day 32

Today we explored some ancient Roman ruins. They were truly breathtaking (and I can’t believe how much there was to see!). We started with the Roman Forum then followed it back through Palatine Hill and on to the Colosseum (all included in the one ticket and definitely worth the time to see at least a bit of each area).

I found a useful app with free audio guides (they have lots for other places in Europe too!) but we were a bit worried about my phone’s terrible battery life (as it has the maps back to our apartment) so we ended up relying on the info signs scattered around. I was able to read some interesting things through the app though and we might listen to the rest later. The history of these areas is certainly interesting but I think the sights are amazing enough without too much background. What do you think?

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Rule #375 of the trip: If a cat is seen a photo must be taken.

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Colosseum Cat!

We passed lots of beautiful buildings and streets on our walk to and from the sights today. We also popped into ‘Despar’ to grab breakfast and some snacks/drinks/tomorrow’s breakfast. For dinner we enjoyed take away pasta and pizza with our Italian beer and bubbles.


We miss you Paris! – Paris/Rome – Day 31

What a wonderful start to the day! Our flight wasn’t till later so we slept in before packing up and heading off to the airport. Due to a current issue with pollution all our public transportation was free! We said farewell to our beloved Metro and RER and had quick flight to Rome.

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That’s when our luck ran out. We haven’t set our phones up for roaming but our ‘host’ (the person holding the keys we needed to get into our apartment here) said we needed to call him from the airport. Sam got some change so we could use the payphones. I called the number we’d been given twice and each time got an error message (with the machine taking a euro each time even though the message said it was a free message!). That’s when I discovered he must have given us the number with the area code included… We also check our paperwork to find it had a different number to the one we’d been given directly by the host. After getting some more change I tried again minus the first 2 numbers and got through! Unfortunately it didn’t like my 2 euro coin so it then cut us off before we’d had a chance to resolve anything. Our host had had time to dis our bus idea in favour of the expensive but much faster option of a taxi. He also asked us to call him when we got to the apartment (um… how?). I dialled back to discover that while I could hear him, he couldn’t hear me. At this point I passed the role of responsibility onto Sam. He tried calling and found the same problem. I waited with the suitcase while Sam hunted down a different set of payphones and eventually got through and organised for our host to wait for us while we took a taxi to the apartment.

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We made it! The street is so narrow cars can’t drive down it and the area was really beautiful at night. Our host was lovely and the apartment is teeny tiny but kind of awesome. Sam ventured out and got us some yummy take away carbonara pasta. Despite all the hassle the taxi trip gave us a chance to see some beautiful sites already, including the Colosseum.

I miss Paris and its wonderful public transport, familiar grocery stores and Disneyland! Looking forward to discovering Rome over the next few days.