Wednesday, February 22, 2012


As part of my mid-semester break, I took a 9 day journey with my fellow Californian, Tanya, into the heart of Italy. In 9 Days we visited 5 cities, each more stunning as the weather begins to improve here in Europe.

Day 1 and 2:
We visited the city of Verona. A lovely town with many connections to Shakespeare, although many are deliberate tourist traps. We spend the first day wandering the Piazza delle Erbe, Castelvecchio, and the Verona Arena. Next we visited the Basilica of San Lorenzo, Casa di Giulietta, Teatro Romano, Castle Scaligeri and Juliet's Tomb, at the Capuccin Church.

Day 3 and 4:
In Venice we were surprised to find that Carnival was in full swing! The Basilica di San Marco stands majestically in St. Mark's Square, where people in costumes freely roamed about the piazza. We took a water bus to the island of Murano to visit the Glass Museum. We even took a gondola ride under neath the Rialto and through the tiny canals of the city. After much shopping and much eating it was time to move on to Florence.

Day 5:
Florence is a beautiful city filled with numerous examples of artistic genius. Two must sees on our list were Michelangelo’s David at the Accademia Gallery and Birth of Venus by Sandro Boticelli at the Galleria degli Uffizi. We climbed the Ponte Vecchio the oldest and most famous bridge over the Arno; the only Florentine bridge to survive WW2. We visited Santa Croce church containing the monumental tombs of Galileo, Michelangelo, Machiavelli, and Dante. We visited the homes of Dante and Michelangelo. Lastly, we climbed to the top of a hill to the Piazzale Michelangelo for a spectacular city view.

Day 6:
We visited the leaning tower of Pisa!

Day 7, 8, and 9:
We slowly but surely made our way through Rome. We visited every possible historical landmark conceivable, including the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, the Pantheon, the Mouth of Truth and the Trevi Fountain. We spent an entire day in Vatican City, working out way through a 1,000 room museum (no we could not possibly visit every single room), and staring at the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel until our necks were sore. At the end of our 9th day, we boarded a plane for London and said goodbye to the beautiful country of Italy. At least we know we will go back someday. After all, I did throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain.

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