Celebrating the New Year in Rome

Trip Start Dec 16, 2012
Trip End Mar 18, 2013

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Flag of Italy  , Lazio,
Thursday, January 3, 2013

Greetings from Roma. Matt here again.  We arrived in Rome in style, after taking a nice ride onboard a high speed train in first class from Florence.  We needed all the rest we could get, as we had an issue with our hostel.  After taking about an hour to find it (had no signs), we got in contact with the owner and found that she had overbooked the place, and that she had no room for us to stay in.  Exhausted, angry, and homeless on the worst night to find a place to stay in, we began to wonder from one hotel to another.  After about an hour, and countless hotels, we were able to find a place near the train station!

                That night we enjoyed a fantastic New Year's celebration atop the Capitoline Hill, adjacent to the Wedding Cake monument.  We had an unimpeded view of multiple firework displays that stretched as far as the eye could see.  We celebrated Jessie’s birthday and rang in the New Year with a bottle of champagne, and then made our way back towards the Piazzo de Popolo trying to avoid people who were throwing firecrackers and empty champagne glasses.

                The next day we planned to see the city, but quickly found out that apparently Italians celebrate New Year’s Day as a holiday, and a lot of the main tourist spots were closed.  We chose to visit the Vatican which thankfully was open.  Upon arrival we got an unexpected surprise, as the Pope was just about to give his blessing to the crowd for the New Year!  It was a really neat experience, and we got a great view of the entire event.  Afterwards we walked around St. Peter's Basilica, which is a huge cathedral filled with ornate decorations leaving you breathless.

                On Wednesday we had the pleasure of spending the entire day with our friend Fabio, who has worked at Acadia for the past three summers.  We visited the ruins of the Palatine Hill and the Forum, which was the main area in Rome during the empire era.  We then went out to lunch where we had some pizza, wine, and espresso (with sugar) after lunch.  As Fabio says, "life isn't sweet, so put some sugar in your coffee."  Shortly after we had some gelato while we visited the Quirnile Palace, and the Trevi Fountain.  We did the custom of tossing a coin backwards while making a wish, so fingers crossed!  We then went on a fun ride called the "Time Elevator," which is essentially a ride that teaches you about the history of Rome from its creation to modern day.  The seats move around like one you would find at Universal Studios, so it was a fun time!  We then took a short walk to the Pantheon, which is a massive church that was originally a large temple that once honored all the Roman gods and deities.  From there we spent our last remaining hours with Fabio on the Spanish Steps, which was still light up with Christmas lights.  Thanks again Fabio for a great day!

                Thursday was a busy day as it was our last day in Rome, and we planned to visit all the remaining places that were closed the previous days.  We started with the Colosseum, which was an interesting place to see, as it once was the sight of horrific public spectacles.  Robyn visited the Vatican Museum and got to experience the Sistine Chapel.  We then got to see the Castel de Santago, Pax Romana, Piazzo Navona, Wedding Cake, Capitoline Hill , and the she-wolf statue.  It was  busy, but we got to see a lot of interesting things in just one day.  That night we got to get some laundry done, which was a nice treat!

                We head to Naples tomorrow, looking forward to seeing the ocean and Mt. Vesuvius!  Hope everyone had a great New Year’s Eve!
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Scott on

I really enjoy these blogs-you are all very good photographers. Please keep sending them!

Peggy on

you all look wonderful and happy...glad you found a place to stay on New Year's Eve....and it doesn't look like you're going hungry :) Have fun in Greece and keep these posts coming.

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