So today we woke up 655 am and we both felt like we had JUST fallen asleep when we woke up. I definitely will appreciate a nice American bed when I get back! Breakfast was yummy as every morning and we had the super good cheese again…still don’t know what kind it is! We are stockpiling cheese in our fridge for the morning we leave too so we have yummy breakfast of crackers and cheese and jam and gluten free plum cakes and nutella. Or something like that!
We took the metro to the Vatican so we would get there before it opened at 830. Best decision ever since a 30/40 minute walk was cut to 10minutes and 2 euro! We walked straight to the Vatican and were approached by a guy selling tours to the Vatican for 40 euro each. The ticket for the Vatican is only like 15/20 euro so we were like uhhhh no because we were there early like all the other things so we figured not much of a line. We were wrong. It was already around the corner. Ugh. People start lining up at like 730am and oh p.s. No one told us the Vatican is closed tomorrow for like a huge Roman Holiday We went on one of the busiest days of the year! So we said screw it and bought the tour tickets. Our guide was an air force brat from Boston and she really knew what she was talking about. It was very worth the money to have her explain the super important things about the Vatican. Unfortunately there were so many people there in the museum that we really couldn’t appreciate what we saw.
The museum is the third largest in the world and so you could spend a day or more and not see everything. The tour did like main things in the main hallways but even if Lilly and I were by ourselves we wouldn’t have gone to see much more because of how hard it was to move in the museum. It really sucked to be honest…
But we DID go to the Sistine chapel. Sigh. Gorgeous . Absolutely stunning.
Worth every euro, even with the stupid rude crowds who sit. On the floor and eat sandwiches in the Sistine chapel. I may not appreciate the chapel part but the art alone should be worshipped an adored. Oh and I stepped on the circle that the pope kneels on every morning. The Sistine Chapel is the only place in the Vatican where pictures are NOT allowed. So, of course, I took about 20.
I was super sneaky, not like the Asians who were holding their cameras and iPhones up and then getting yelled at o r kicked out by the guards. Lilly and I were quite pleased with my sneaky photos. Yay!!! Oh Michaelangelo, you rock my world.
Then we took the side entrance to St Peters Bascilica. The largest church in Italy. In the Vatican of course. We got to skip the 30minutes line too! And here we saw THE Pieta.
Michaelangelo did a couple and I posted about seeing the one in Florence which was incredible but this was even MORE beautiful!!! Unfortunately it was behind 3inch bulletproof glass because of some crazy who tried to chop of her hand like 10 years ago or something. Idiots ruining it for everyone else. T
here was also a piece of metal in the church that everyone was taking pictures touching. We followed suit. Still don’t know what it was but we will google it tonight. Lol. So the church was amazing. One of my favorites because instead of paintings everywhere there were sculptures everywhere in their little cut outs in the wall. There were also a lot of dead popes and cardinals.
I’m not all about that but the sculptures were amazing. Sigh. But by then we had been in the Vatican from about 815-115 and we wanted to get food!!
|They assured me this was clean water….|
We headed back towards the hotel area. We ended up going towards campo di fire again which is a nice marketplace and cheaper than piazza Navona. We found a organic store and I nought almond cookies. Basically almonds, sugar, egg whites. Delicious. As we nibbled, our navigational prowess improved as did our overall appreciation for everything Rome. Amazing how that works. We shopped around the cafes until we found one with acceptable prices and we shared a caprese salad (tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil), a side of baked potatoes (like amazing. Best potatoes ever) and a .5l of a white wine. Perfecto. Just the right amount of food for a light lunch.
Then we headed to the gelato place I found online as “best gelato in all Rome, some say the world” on timeout.com/Rome. I had caramel with meringue gelato with chocolate and rum. Lilly had honey gelato (house specialty) and cinnamon ginger gelato. The website didn’t lie. We were enjoying the most amazing gelato and reading thought their book of all the newspaper/magazine/online reviews they had had. They only use all natural ingredients and some flavors like banana took them over a month to perfect. They have a Marsala wine flavor and they only use 20year old Marsala. There was also an excerpt from the book EAT PRAY LOVE where the author (who spent 3 months in rome) basically said that gelatin di San crispino (the name) was the best gelato in all Rome.seriously, if anyone ever goes to Rome, this is where they need to buy gelato. And it’s not obvious either,it’s down a side street, it’s not flashy, and we almost missed it twice trying to find it! I think aleot of people who find it probably don’t even know what a gem they have found!!
So then finally back to the room for a quick hour nap and then Lilly did some packing and I munched on rice cakes with olive oil and rosemary. I wish they sold that flavor in the states! So good and light! Then we headed out for dinner. First a stop at Sant Eustachio for offer again. We had coffee granites con panna (with whipped cream) the whipped cream here isn’t sweet like back home but the granita sure was. Neither of us could finish them but the coffee flavor itself was divine. We agreed to get cappuccinos there tomorrow. Then we walked around a lot, past the Trevi fountain again and the pantheon. We made a quick stop inside the Pantheon again…just because we could.
I think it is my favorite church besides St Peters Bascilica because it is just so open and free. I wish I knew what it was like in Ancient Roman times when it was still Pagan.
Before they came and made it a Bascilica… It’s just so pretty. It’s also where Rafael is buried. Then we just walked the streets. We found a cute chocolate shop and bought some different Italian chocolates to try and then finally settled on a restaurant in a back alley away from the touristy things. We ordered .5l of the house red but apparently they only served it by the bottle so we shared a bottle of the house Chianti that was brought out. More than normal but we did just fine since we had been pacing ourselves with wine this trip. We had grilled vegetables (zucchini and eggplant) for a started which was divine. Fresh herbs and olive oil. Yum. Then Lilly had pumpkin gnocchi and I had risotto with tomatoes and eggplant. My risotto improved considerably when I covered it in the delicious Parmesan cheese. It wasnt bad before, it just wasn’t like super super spectacular. It’s hard to compete in Italy with so much amazing food. Lilly finished her gnocchi though and I was a bit jealous I couldn’t try it but I will make all of these things gluten free to try in the upcoming year for sure.
We meant to buy gelato again on our way back but we didn’t go to the bathroom in the restaurant and so we practically ran back to the hotel. It’s amazing how the street vendors don’t even bother to harass you when you move with a purpose. Plus I had my bitch face on and I have been working with Lilly on hers which has improved quite considerably. So no people trying to talk to us and we made it safely and dryly back to the room. Once we were here we pretty much decided to stay in and watch a movie and finish our cherries and chocolate bar we bought the day we arrived. All in all a wonderful roman night.
Can’t believe tomorrow is our last day in Rome and my last day in Europe. I’m ready to be back though, there is nothing that I didn’t do that I wanted to do which is really quite an accomplishment I think!