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Published: October 13th 2007
Hello from Bari!!!!
So since we last put up a blog we have been travelling around Italy. From Zermatt, we took a train to Padua, a little place near Venice. We decided, as Venice is a bit of an expensive town to stay in that we would stay in Padua for two night and go into Venice for the day. The Lonely planets excellent directions of take the bus, get off at this stop and then ask for directions made finding our hostel challenging. We discovered the frustration involved when no one would even attempt to help us. After getting many head shakes a very nice lady in a store who didn't speak much english looked up the hostel on the internet and printed us out a map. We couldn't tell her enough how thankful we were to have her help. That night we had a picnic (we have a lot of those) in the park. The next morning we headed for Venice. It is the most unique place I have ever been. We spent the day walking around. It rained which to be honest was kind of nice. We had the city to ourselves. People here don't like rain and when it starts to rain they all head inside. So we had the city to ourselves to explore. Yes, once again we looked like crazy Canadians. Venice was beautiful and we took our friend Courtney's advice and just got lost. We didn't look at a single map, we just got lost in the meandering streets and bridges. We found some beautiful spots. We had a nice dinner out and headed back to Padua.
The next day we headed for Florence and fell in love with it. Our hostel was up out of town a but on a hillside. It was a big yellow building that looked nothing like a hostel. It looked more like an estate out of a movie. Filled with frescoes, sculptures and 16 foot ceilings. We thought we were in the wrong place. The next day we explored Florence and walked up into the Tuscan hillsides surrounding. We had a gorgeous view over the city and realized how big Florence really is. The next morning we went and saw the David. I am not much for museums and sculptures but it took my breath away. A 17 foot solid marble sculpture. Very impressive.
That afternoon we headed for Rome. We have figured out the trains here and haven't had any major problems. We arrived in Rome and headed to our hostel. We were so excited to be in Rome, a short lived excitement......once we got to our hostel we found that all of the things mentioned in the lonely planet that made this place sound so attractive, weren't there. We were expecting to find a kitchen, DVD room, and laundry facilities, but instead found a bare bone hostel with nothing but bunk beds and a bar. So we payed extra to have all of these things to realize that they didn't exist. So after hearing some lame excuses we decided that going to see the colloseum would probably quickly change our moods and it did. We headed for the metro and our good karma returned. We went to buy three day passes to use the metro which would cost 22 euro. We put 25 euro in the machine and got our three euro change, our tickets and our 25 euro back. So not only did we get our tickets but got paid to ride the metro free for 3 days. haha. Made us forget about the hostel ordeal for a while. We saw the colloseum and headed for bed, we knew we would have two big days of seeing Rome ahead of us.
The next day was the day that the Pope speaks at Vatican so we stayed away from the crowds. We instead saw the colloseum (again) inside and out, the Spanish steps, Trevi fountain, Piazza Popolo, Piazza Navona, Pantheon, and some ruins around town. We did a tour of the inside of the colloseum and got some very interesting information. By the time we got back to our hostel we were very tired. We played some beer pong with some guys from New York and Toronto. The next morning we headed to the Vatican. The line was huge but moved pretty quickly once the door to the museum opened. I think we waited for 2 hours. We had some gelato at 10:00 in the morning. It has become a daily routine to eat gelato. The museum was as overwhelming as the Louvre in Paris for me and after 3 hours we were both ready to get out of there. We saw the Sistine Chapel and stood in awe under the incredible art work. After stuffing our brains with art we walked to St. Peter's square and made our way through another line to the Basilica. We walked up winding little stairs to the inside of the cupola (dome). From there we could see that a lot of the art work was mosaics. Little tiny pieces making up hundreds of feet of images. We then climbed further up to the peak of the dome and had a view over Rome. From there we could see all of the locations we had visited previously. The last stop on the list was Castel St. Angelo and then we headed back to our hostel.
That night we went on a pub crawl with our new friends. The hostel we were staying at put it on and as we walked between bars we stopped again at the Trevi fountain and Spanish steps. It was nice to see them at night all lit up. It was a fun night and we were feeling it the next morning. We had a day of laziness and went to the train station.
We have decided to go to Greece and that is what brings us to Bari, the departure port to head to Greece. We arrived hear last night at 10:00pm and were a little worried about finding a place to sleep but we did. We leave tonight at 8:00 and get to Greece tomorrow morning at 6:00am. Should be a sleepless night I am sure. We are headed to an island off the western coast of Greece called Corfu. We had some friends recomend it to us as a place that we can't miss. So all is well and we are still having an amazing time. Can't believe we have less than a month left. We are looking forward to some relaxation in Corfu. The place we are going has everything we need to do that. From snorkeling to yoga, quad advetures to kayaking.....I think it will be great!!! So we will likely be able to post pictures from there as we have a few to share with you.
Hope all is well back home, we miss you guys
Talk to you from Greece,
Alicia and Ross
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