Weekend Alone in Rome

This past weekend I ventured to Rome, Italy by myself and had an unbelievable experience. It is a city rich with history, mouthwatering food, and extremely kind people. This was my first true travel experience alone and, in my mind, it could not have gone any better. I was fully engaged as an American tourist and tried to get a full taste of the city in just two days time. Upon my arrival on Friday morning, I headed straight from the airport to Vatican City; this was a life changing experience. The relics within the Vatican Museum date back hundreds and hundreds of years and are simply breathtaking. My tour guide was incredibly knowledgable and cherished the history within the museum greatly; never before had I been so amazed or mesmerized by pieces of artwork. Walking through the hall of the Sistine Chapel was something I have dreamed of for a long time. To walk in the same room as the Sacred College of Cardinals is simply breathtaking; I remember vividly when Pope Francis was elected as Head of the Catholic Church and was stunned to be in the same room where the election took place. Around the corner from the museum is St. Peter’s Basilica which is another outstanding church that dwarfs all the buildings around it; its’ size and beauty is absolutely astounding. That night I ventured to an authentic Italian restaurant where I had the BEST spaghetti carbonara I have ever had. The following day I did as much touring as I possibly could walking a total of 10 miles throughout the city. It started with a food tour early in the morning where I visited five different Italian restaurants; I was fortunate enough to enjoy all ranges of Italian cuisine: pizza, pasta, olive oils, vinegars, Italian appetizers, and even some gelato. It was my first food tour aboard and it made me quite upset that I had not done it in other cities. One girl in my tour group said she does it in every city she travels too as it is the best way to enjoy the city as you taste excellent food while also getting an authentic tour and view of the city. After my food tour I went to The Pantheon, Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, and finished with The Colosseum. It was a day full of memorable moments as I had dreamed of seeing the sights of Rome since I was little. I was honestly upset I had not decided to go for longer. Rome is a city that offers so many fantastic sights and authentic restaurants; on every corner there is a small restaurant that could have the best pizza or pasta you have ever had. I truly felt that there was so much I did not see despite the fact that I did all of the ‘basic’ tourist activities one does in Rome. Overall, I had one of my best weekend aboard experiences thus far; it was the first time I was upset that I was heading back to Prague! I truly hope that one day I have another opportunity to walk along the streets of Italy, and more specifically, Rome.