It was May and I had to be in the UK for work, so Jessica and I had planned a 2 week trip to Europe. Originally I wanted to just knock off some of the smaller countries on the Century travelers club list, but with Jessica coming along we kind of had a slight change of plans.
Jessica and I only stayed in England for 2 nights one at the beginning of our trip and one at the end. I figured it would be best if she slept off her jet lag in London and then she would be able to experience more places that she really wanted to see. In London on that first day, we really only wandered up and down the Thames, She had Nandos for the first time and met my friend Josiah.
We left London as fast as we could on a train bound for…
In Paris we checked into our air bnb and walked for what seemed to be forever. Passed the Eiffel Tower, along the Seine, through countless parks to The Louvre and on to Norte Dame before getting rained on so hard, we were forced to hide out in a cafe. I remember coming out of the train station upon arrival and Jessica immediately saying “This feels more what I assumed Europe would feel like, London felt too much like America.”
As I had mentioned before,the purpose of this trip for me was to cross off a few smaller European countries from the Travelers Century Club list that I had never been to. So after a day and a half in Paris, we were on a 9ish hour train ride south to…
The only things I knew about Monaco was that it was where the filthy rich vacationed and that they had the Monte Carlo Grand Prix. We ended up arriving at night, just after dark. After walking through the train station and the winding roads, we made it to our air bnb. The next morning we set out. It felt like we covered a large part of the micro-nation in just a few hours. We slowed down around lunch and hung at a beach cafe that was surrounded by the most beautiful blue water . Around mid afternoon found ourselves at the palace, Which has incredible views of the harbor and the many multi million dollar yachts. All in all I would say Monaco was an excellent experience and a stop that should be on everyones agenda.
Our next stop on this European adventure was Italy. I must say I was a little apprehensive about going to Italy. I had been a few times for work and I just had a terrible taste in my mouth from the way people had perviously treated me. However, Jessica wanted to go so I sucked it up and went. We took the train from Monaco to Venice, Venice to Rimini, Rimini to Rome. Arriving in Venice was a little overwhelming. There were lots of people everywhere and there were little winding walk ways instead of roads,it was confusing and it took a while for us to find our place. We stayed in an old apartment that was very musty but it was in a great location. We spent a few days in Venice and I was blown away. It might be looked at as a tourist trap such as Disneyland to some Italians, but it’s an incredible and mysterious city.
From Venice we hopped the train to Rimini and had to catch a bus to the micro-nation of San Marino. San Marino is high on a mountain top. The tiny little nation only inhabits about 35000 people. However, most live in the area below the mountain. The narrow cobble stone streets were filled with people visiting in the afternoon,but was a ghost town once the evening rolled around. Being up high on a mountain top over Italian countryside- everywhere seemed to have amazing views. 10/10 would visit again.
Rome and The Vatican City
I have this problem of trying to fit a lot into one trip-so we were on the move almost every day. We made it to Rome around mid-day, checked into our hotel that was strategically placed by the train station and headed off to the Vatican City. We visited St. Peters Cathedral and wandered around a little before heading off to the Colosseum.Then we slowly walked around Rome to take in whatever sights we would find along the way.
In all it was a great trip but if i were to do it again I would probably suggest we pick a less busy time of year. The over tourism is becoming insane in some of these places.