Last weekend I had the opportunity to spend the weekend in the capital of Italia, Roma. Not only that, but I was able to see it during Easter weekend which was a magical dream. Friday late afternoon I flew out of Milan to Rome. I’ve mentioned before the beauty of European flights- but there is a downside that seems to be very consistent in airports here. The local flights tend to go to airports outside of the city. So in my case, for Rome, my one hour flight ended up being shorter then the time spent getting on my bus and going into center city. Regardless, I arrived with no problems and after checking into my hostel, had dinner with a friend and finished in time to head to the Colosseum for the Station’s of the Cross.
We were a little disappointed because from where we were standing on the road, you could’ve hear or see much. But we did get to see the Colosseum at night and we were able to see the Pope (I swear, the white dot under the red tent is him)! From there we called it a night and headed back to get some sleep before our big day Saturday.
Saturday morning Becca and I started the day with walking to the Roman Forum, the ruined city. The weather was warm and sunny, showing signs that spring was finally coming. For the Forum, you can purchase tickets to both the Colosseum and the Forum. But walking around the outside also gives a great view looking down onto the city.
We walked around some more before heading back to the hostel to pick up Liz, the third American to join our crew for the weekend. I’ve said before that a hostel with the kitchen is a must as it can save you so much money. Well, when the weather is nice, another money saving option can be a picnic. That Saturday, we were lucky enough to have a picnic with a view of the Colosseum behind us. It’s going to be hard to beat that view.
Rome is absolutely walkable- but it is big and you need comfy shoes. According to my apple watch, we walked almost 17 miles that Saturday. And trust me, our feet were not happy about it. We also ate way to much gelato, but it was Eater weekend, and we were in Rome, so we told ourselves it was okay. We walked to the Vatican and then circled back to the center of the city to join a free walking tour and meet up with another American friend. If you find yourself in Rome, look up Rome’s Ultimate Walking Tour. We loved it! Our tour guide took us through some main sights, explaining the history of it all. I’d have to say that my favorite part was when we were almost at the end. We were crossing one of the many bridges across the Fiume Tevere, when our guide began pointing out the angels that lined each side of the bridge. I may have easily passed right by them thinking nothing more then that they were nice statues. Our guide, however, showed that they told the story of the crucifixion. Below are pictures of a few of them.
Sunday morning it was just Liz and I and we decided to go to the Vatican for Easter Mass. It was incredible, to say the least. Rumor had it that crowds had started gathering hours ago for the 10:15 mass. We arrived around 10:30 and were still able to get into the center (after passing through two different security checkpoints). The atmosphere was full of excitement and reverence. After mass, the Pope rode through the crowd in his pope-mobile (how cool is he?!?!). He ended the morning with giving a speech to the public- one that I obviously had to look up afterwards in English. Here’s a bit that he ended with:
“To those in our society who have lost all hope and joy in life, to the elderly who struggle alone and feel their strength waning, to young people who seem to have no future, to all I once more address the words of the Risen One: “See, I am making all things new… To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life” (Rev 21:5-6).”
I was so happy we had decided to go and spend Easter morning at the Vatican. Throughout the day I missed my family, I missed my grandma’s cooking, and I missed my boyfriend a little extra much. But I’d have to say, this was an Easter to remember.
We grabbed lunch afterwards and strolled the streets some more. In the evening we caught up with yet another American friend and went to the Trevi Fountain at night. By the end of the day the universe was telling me that I had eaten too much gelato. Aside from getting chocolate gelato on my white dress, it really was a great weekend. Monday morning we headed to Florence (blog post to come). Best news yet- my MOM is coming in just a few short days. And Rome, we’ll see you again this coming weekend.
Hope you all had a lovely, blessed Easter with family.