Friday, May 7, 2010

Rome 2009 and a Few Photos

I really need to do more with my travel blog page, so I have decided to try to post on a daily basis a photo or two from my travels, and more when I include excerpts from my journals.

2-5 November 2009:
Rome, Italy

I flew to Rome via Dulles International with friends Carolyn and Mark, Barb, Carol, Glenn and Sharon, and Glenn and Carol, as well as a few other fellow cruisers. We spent three nights in Rome before boarding the Celebrity Equinox for a 14-night transatlantic cruise to Florida.

We stayed at Hotel Giardino, located in the heart of Rome (my second stay there – basic 2-star hotel in an excellent location). I booked a car service with Stefano of Rome Cabs. Seven of us squeezed into a large van – our luggage barely fit.

I spent the first afternoon alone exploring the Jewish ghetto, Trastevere (lunch at Al Fontanone, Piazza Trilussa, 46), and Campo dei Fiori. In the late afternoon Mark and I walked to see the section of a 145 A.D. temple to the emperor Hadrian, which is incorporated into the side of a bank. We saw the church of Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza, designed by Borromini, an outstanding and unique example of Baroque architecture.

The group and I had a great dinner at Hostaria Romana. It was a fun place and we all had a great time. The restaurant walls were filled with graffiti and some of us added our names to the walls, although space was limited. I even peeked behind one of the framed photos on the wall only to find every inch of space written upon.

Glenn, Carol and I spent the next day together. We visited the indoor market of Testaccio and picked up a picnic lunch at Volpetti (47 Via Marmorata), a wonderful gourmet meat, cheese, and wine shop. A short metro ride, we visited Ostia Antica, an underrated sight with just a few tourists. The amphitheatre was quite impressive, as were the mosaic tiles in the Baths of Neptune. It rained in the morning but cleared up in time for our picnic lunch of panini's with olive bread, prosciutto, and buffalo mozzarella, and slices of pizza.

Tony arrived on the 4th and we spent the afternoon at the Roman museum and Baths of Diocletian. I was amazed at the size of the baths. I later shopped for bottles of wine to drink on the ship.

For our last evening, 30 fellow cruisers joined me at the Grotta Pinta lounge for drinks and tasty antipasti – so much food; we didn't go out to dinner. My friend Giancarlo introduced me to Sveva, manager of the lounge. Everyone had a great time.

The gang

Typical Roman Street

Ostia Antica

Ostia Antica

Delicious Pizza!
Outdoor cafe in Trastevere
Typical wall with planters hanging out windows
Vespa and graffiti
Colosseum at dusk

No comments: