A Travellerspoint blog

Again With The Cinque Terre

Montorrosa

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When we all had showers we jumped on the train (after descending the 382 stairs) and went to Levanto to grab breakfast and pay for parking for the day. All hostels in the area were prebooked and full so we had to leave at the end of the day. We made little sandwiches for breakfast then took the train to Monorola. This is another nice little village we explored. We went down to the water, hiked over rocks, and just sat and admired the view. After an hour headed out to Montorrossa for swimming and tanning. We all took our first swims in the Mediterranean! Very cool. We ate at the same restaurant on the beach as the night before and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Then it was back to Vicenza for a movie and sleepy time.

Posted by hangtime41 04.24.2011 11:55 Archived in Italy Comments (1)

Cinque Terre!

Exploration

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Yay for the morning! I was so glad we all made it through the night. We were back on the road and all looking forward to a shower. We had to get gas so we asked the wench. She led us on some crazy jungle trek on the tiniest little road the longest way possible. We thought for sure she was leading us astray and then magically we were right where we needed to be. Not only that, but we were in Lavanto, a small town that connects to the Cinque Terre by train. We bought ourselves a market breakfast and bought some train tickers that allow for unlimited travel between all 5 villages. We had asked the travel lady in Levanto where a hostel was and headed to that town. Corniglia is the name and it is the most central village of the Cinque Terre. All of these villages are built right on the side of the mountains and butt right against the Mediterranean Sea. This makes the views from each spectacular! It also makes exploring them a stairmaster work out. I can't imagine people building places to live on the sides of steep slopes like this. I read these villages were built to hide from raiders. I wouldn't attack them. We checked in to Ostello Corniglia then hiked across town to a restaurant. What a true Italian moment. Up on a hill overlooking the Mediterranean, lush valley green and vineyards all around, and eating authentic Italian food. Oh. Yes. After food we hiked all over. Corniglia has some amazing views. After hiking all over we took a little nap back in the hostel.
When we woke up we took the train to Vernazza, which was my favorite. Why you ask? A castle of course. The cove here is surrounded by cliffs, a bell tower, and a keep that overlooks the sea. Many pictures. We were back on the train to Montorrossa. This place has the biggest beaches of all the villages. We decided that we would be back the following day to do a little swimming and get some sun. After walking around we decided to have dinner on the beach at a nice restaurant. Very good food. Our table wasn't more than 75 feet from the water. Jealous? After an excellent dinner where Casey had his first Italian wine, we headed back to Corniglia. We had to hike 382 stairs to the village (Gideon and I counted). In the room while Casey video called my parents, Gideon and I manage to laugh ourselves to tears. We calmed down and I was out in a wink. I had been cold all day and found out why in the night. Apparently another fever broke and I was drenched in sweats for the night.

Posted by hangtime41 04.24.2011 11:53 Archived in Italy Comments (1)

Explore Rome!

History and sunshine

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Roma! Finally we get to spend the day exploring Rome. I love this city and I love the palpable history. Stand anywhere near the Coliseum and you can't help but feel it. We were able to park quickly again! We wanted to take a guided tour of the Coliseum so we searched for one on the streets. Guided tours are about double the price but you get to bypass the lines and also you get a tour of the Palentine Hill. Our guide was 100% Italiano. Such a greatah accentah. He was able to fill me in on all the info about Rome and the Coliseum that I have been salivating for. As we enter the arch where the royalty would have entered, I can't help but gape at the enormity and solid feeling of the structure. Its so easy to lose yourself daydreaming about what it would have been like. The Romans were ingenious about buildings but cruel and nasty about gladiators. Four hundred thousand people died in the arenas all together around Rome. Side note: the name Gladiator comes from the name of the Roman short sword called the gladius.
Our guide for the Palentine Hill was a British student who really knew his stuff. The Coliseum is really cool, but the history goes back even further on the hill. This hill overlooks the Coliseum and it is huge. The size of the palace staggered me. Just one room in the place was 5 acres! Indoor lakes and indoor race tracks. Out of control. Rooms guilded completely in gold. The Romans were really rich. We then went down the other side of the hill and into the Forum. The Forum was the site of commerce in ancient Rome. I couldn't help but picture myself in a toga and sandals, wondering if the birds I was hearing were the same for them. Fun fact: the hill is the foundation and beginning of Rome. Also in the Forum there are two pillars made from Egyptian red marble. EACH is valued at 120 million Euro. Rome is AWESOME! 
We wanted to go to the Vatican City and take pictures of the crucifixion statue sequence but could not find a place to park. So instead we left for the Cinque Terre. We drove up and around windy and steep mountain hill climbs only to find that there was no place to stay and no parking. We went back to the nearest town, La Spezia, and went all over the city looking for a place to stay. No luck. So we ended up sleeping at a truck stop in Gideon's car. Well, they slept. Between Gideon's snoring and Casey's coughing I had a great night counting to 10,000.

Posted by hangtime41 04.21.2011 13:21 Archived in Italy Comments (0)

Casey's Corner 7ish

More

Well not sure when I did this last but I have been sick so didn't care much for belong anything. Switzerland was really cool saw the alps, they were freaken amazing. Also had my first meal there too since before we were sick. Then we did a train to italy to gideon's house. That was relaxing. Got there showered and cleaned up still feeling like crap both of us. Next day I juiced one more time and that's it. So exciting. Rome was cool. Stephen will explain better on that. Now we are in one of the five cities in cinqetera and I'm still plugged up uh ohhh. Lots of bran. This cities are so freaked saweet.

Posted by hangtime41 13:19 Comments (1)

Roma

Italia

sunny

Being sick for six days sure stripped away any care that I had except for getting better. But now the story continues as we are finally out adventuring again!
We spent last night believing that we were never going to get better and that we were going to die. I woke up after an uninturrupted night of sleep, so today we are going to venture to Roma! We drove there in Gideon's BMW in about five hours. Nothing worth much of a note. The AC didn't work and I managed to put a crack in Gideon's bumper. Lame. Rome traffic is out of control. Round abouts the size of half a football field with three lanes of traffic. People swerving, honking, and jostling; organized mayhem. Our lovely GPS gave us such good directions that we fondly call her the wench. I've been very excited to see Rome and all her history. As we rounded a corner in the early evening, the Coliseum was there in all it's glory. As I did I had a physical sensation of my heart jumping into my throat. I mean look at it, there is the Coliseum of ROME! What a building. Because it was evening we were able to find a parking spot easily. Waking around Rome at night was very cool. There are monuments everywhere! Everything was closed for tours but it also meant that we had freedom to move around as the hoards had gone home already. The Fountain De Trevi was very nice. Some girls taking pictures there asked if they could take a picture with me. They explained that they were taking pictures with pretty people from every city they visited and I won. Ha! Jokes on them. I'm not photogenic. 
We ate an amazing Italian meal not 5 minutes from the fountain. Then we headed towards our hostel. The wench had us all over Rome before finally getting us to our destination. Healing body plus Rome equals sleepy sleepy.

Posted by hangtime41 04.21.2011 12:41 Archived in Italy Comments (1)

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