We’ve done and seen so much in the month of June, on the go every day that I’m just starting to get caught up on my blog entries. We had been intensively traveling with our besties from Calgary (Vyse and Sandra) who joined us for 10 days in Rome, Naples and the Amalfi Coast, then our kids came out and we rinsed and repeated. Overlapping with the kids my dad came out to show us his native land of Slovenia. We spent 6 days with him and the kids, then Janet and I drove them to Venice where they started their journey home. We returned to Slovenia and spent another 10 days with dad, a few days ago we dropped him off at the airport in Ljubljana and drove back to Venice where we hopped on a plane for Palermo, Sicily.
We’ve been in Sicily for a few days now at our home base in Castelfelice di Rocella near Cefalu spending some time at the beach relaxing after all the busy days of sightseeing. We’ll spend 5 weeks circling the entire coastline of Sicily and then we head back to reality, time to go home and settle back into real life! Our travel basket filled to the brim, a few pounds gained and our bank account empty, it’s time! But forget about that, lets get back to traveling. I’ll try to fill you in on the past month until I’m caught up to current Sicily. If you want to follow us live best to hook up on our Facebook page where I’ll send out the occasional post on our whereabouts. Click here for a link to our Facebook Page.
Now let’s start with where we last ended, our month in Croatia came to an end and we flew from Dubrovnik to Rome where we joined our friends, Sandra and Vyse. They had arrived the day before and had the vino chilled and glasses waiting for us when we arrived at our apartment for a 2, full-day intensive tour of the eternal city. The first night we settled in with some cocktails, then headed out for dinner and ended the evening in Piazza Navona.
Day one, our first full day was packed with a trip to the Coliseum on the full meal deal package with entrance to the Coliseum, then Palentine Hill and the Forum. It was a hot day and we exhausted ourselves walking for miles. I particularly enjoyed meandering through the ruins of the Forum, such an enormous amount of excavated buildings so intact that you can visualize what the city might have looked like back in the day.
Day two had us with tickets for the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel so we headed out early to get in line for the opening hour but most of Rome had the same idea. As we got close to the entrance the crowds began to build and coming around the corner we could see the lines formed that seemed to go for miles. Luckily with the advanced tickets we were able to skip some of the cue and got into the museum relatively fast. Sandra had Rick Steves free audio guide downloaded and we attempted to follow his tour through the massive museum among the crowds of tourists and large groups that filled it to almost bursting. It was so busy, so hot, elbow to elbow, to a claustrophobic extent that really took most of the enjoyment out of the tour. It was disappointing that you had to be herded along with the flow of humanity that made its way like a stream down the halls of the museum, I can’t imagine what it would be like in the peak seasons of July and August. The artwork and extent of the Vatican collections though is outstanding, awe inspiring, miraculous, you can’t imagine it until you’ve seen it.
It came to a somewhat climactic point when we entered the Sistine Chapel in the flow of the people river that pooled in the middle of the chapel. A quick service was given and then they try to usher you through before you get a chance to digest the art history that is here but luckily, we caught some space on the back benches that surround the chapel. We ignored the cues and sat here listening to the excellent explanation by Rick Steves on the works of Michelangelo, the legacy he left behind on the ceilings of the chapel that have been everlasting. After the museum, we spent a good hour walking through the incredible St. Peters Basilica, its scope and adornment of art is something to behold. Late in the afternoon we headed home to relax a bit and freshen up, then went back out for a lovely dinner in Trastevere one of our favorite Roman neighborhoods. Next post and we are off to Naples!
Here’s a video of our Roman Adventure, click on the photo below to open. And if you want to look at our pics, click here to link to the photo gallery.