January 28, 2018

2017 Trip to Italy

FILED IN: personal, travel

Blake and I took a week’s trip to Italy in October and it was amazing. Between the busyness that is being a photographer in the fall and then the holidays, it’s taken me a while to find time to sort through the thousand pictures I took and share them here on the blog. Don’t worry, I’m not actually sharing all 1000, but if anyone wants a private slideshow with commentary, you know where to find me. 😉

Day One: Rome

We arrived in Rome at 9am on Day 1 after 17 hours of travel. We were kind of exhausted and a little disoriented, so we ended up spending our first 6 hours in Italy sleeping in an adorable AirBnB. After a refreshing nap and a couple showers, we headed down to Campo de’Fiori for dinner and an evening stroll through the heart of Rome. Full disclosure – a client gifted us with a Rick Steves book before our trip and that man is a life saver. Following his walking tour, we saw the Piazza Navona, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, and everything in-between. The weather was amazing for an evening stroll and it was the perfect introduction to Italy.

Day Two: The Vatican

We didn’t go to Italy with many plans in place. Honestly, we booked the AirBnBs and then stopped planning. The idea was to get up and see the Vatican the next morning, but being sleep deprived/jet lagged, the next morning ended up being the next afternoon. By the time we got to St. Peter’s Basilica, the line to get in was insanely long. We had tickets to the Vatican Museum later that afternoon, so we ended up buying some gelatto and exploring the area around the Vatican until it was time to head to the museum. After the museum, we got into the Basilica just before it closed, had the most amazing dinner at a nearby cafe, and then headed back to our room to rest.

Then, because we’re in Italy and I’m always hungry, we went back out around 9pm for second dinner. Our hotel was just a couple of blocks from the Colosseum so we found a restaurant that overlooked the Colosseum, made friends with two guys from Mexico, and spent a couple hours talking about politics, which was more fun than it sounds. We said goodbye and swung by the Colosseum for some up close and personal shots of it at night before buying some more gelatto and heading back to our room to call it a night.

Days Three & Four: Sorrento & Pompeii

We headed for Sorrento on the morning of Day 3 and after a nice train ride through the countryside and then a HORRIBLE train ride for the last leg of the trip, we arrived in Sorrento and I was immediately in love. Seriously, this tiny city on the coast of Italy is where I’m meant to be. 24/7. We stayed in the most adorable AirBnB. This place had an amazing view of Mt. Vesuvius from the balcony and a skylight that looked down from the bedroom into the kitchen below. Okay, that was kind of weird, but I kind of liked it.

That first evening in Sorrento we decided to explore on our own. We wandered around the town square, window shopped at all of the street stands, and had a great dinner people watching as night fell.

The next morning we headed to Pompeii via train and had a great time exploring the ruins. This was probably my favorite part of the trip. I did not expect a city destroyed by a volcano to be quite so interesting, but I seriously could not stop marvelling over the sophistication of this ancient city.

That evening, back in Sorrento, we took advantage of Rick Steves’ infinite knowledge and took his walking tour through the city. We accidentally saw a wedding entering a gorgeous cathedral and ended at the beach at sunset. Gorgeous sites, beautiful lighting, and 100s of palm trees (I don’t know why, but I love them) – I could not have asked for a better evening.

Day Five – Borghese Gardens

The next day it was back to Rome. Our last AirBnB was the best yet. A full apartment, this place was super cute and had the MOST amazing shower. That evening we headed to the Borghese Gardens to explore. Leaving Rick Steves behind, we wandered around Rome as the sun set and witnessed an insane amount of PDA. Couples in Rome do not hold back. 😳

Walking over a bridge back towards the direction of the apartment (we were kind of lost), I stopped to take a picture of the lights on the water (above) and noticed that there was a group of people congregating further down the bridge. Wondering what they were all looking at, we walked an additional 50 feet and turned to see St. Peter’s Basilica in all its glory (below). I loved this part of being in Italy – it felt like every block, we found ourselves accidentally discovering something ancient/significant/gorgeous.

Day Six – Roman Forum & Colosseum

Day 6 was our last full day in Italy. We spent the morning and early afternoon visiting the Roman Forum and the Colosseum. It was a gorgeous day that was perfect for wandering around and taking in the sights. After winding through the Roman Forum, we grabbed lunch and headed to the nearby Capitoline Hill. When we eventually got to the Colosseum, we were a little tired, a little hungry, and a little sore (having walked about 60 miles in 6 days), so we did the quick version of the Colosseum tour before catching a ride back to the apartment.

Italy was incredible and I am so glad we made the impulsive decision to visit it. My only regret was not staying longer. Although I have some other countries to cross off my bucket list, I really hope to visit again in the future.

If any one has any questions or would want to see more pictures – don’t hesitate to reach out! You can email me at kaylina@kaylinanorton.com

Keep smiling!
Kaylina

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