The Roman Forum: A Window to the Past

This is it…the last blog post about my spring trip to Europe with Dan! I meant to write this a lot earlier. In fact, my goal was to wrap up the Euro trip recap before 2017 arrived, but that didn’t exactly work out as planned. Is anyone else having a supremely lazy yet fulfilling start to the new year? My month has been filled with happy moments that make me smile at where I am in life and how lucky I am to have so many incredible people around me. From attending the first birthday party of my former roommate and bestie’s sweet little daughter, to seeing my best friend since childhood get married just a few days ago, it’s been a very tender month. Add in a visit from yet another bestie leading up to the wedding, working a full time job (not blogging, unfortunately), and Pinteresting, planning and meeting potential vendors for my own 2018 wedding, and it’s just been a very busy but exciting time in my life. Continue reading “The Roman Forum: A Window to the Past”

Getting Lost At the Musée du Louvre

The Louvre is one of the most popular museums in the world. Those who don’t know it by name are sure at least to recognize the iconic and controversial glass pyramid that sits in the middle of the courtyard and houses the main entry point for the museum. In 2015 alone, the Louvre attracted nearly 9 million annual visitors, more than any other museum in the world. Continue reading “Getting Lost At the Musée du Louvre”

Strolling Around the Colosseum

Sometimes in life and in travel, things don’t go as planned. Trains are missed, bags are left behind, and wallets are stolen. And in my case, blog schedules are scrapped to make way for some exciting new life events. Today’s post (or let’s be honest, Saturday’s post) was meant to be all about my spring visit to the Louvre with my boyfriend Dan. Instead, I’m showcasing some photos from our trip to the Colosseum. Why? Continue reading “Strolling Around the Colosseum”

Paris Museum Pass: Is It Worth It?

Anyone who has visited Paris can tell you: it’s not necessarily cheap. Many of the big attractions have an entry fee, with the option to spend plenty more on special exhibits, onsite restaurants and all the souvenirs your little heart can handle. Sightseeing in Paris can add up, and when you factor in the cost of transportation, lodging, shopping and food, a short trip to the city has the potential to get a little spendy.

But I’m here to tell you that visiting the city of lights doesn’t have to be expensive. Taking the time to research your options and plan ahead can save you a lot in the long run. When it comes to sightseeing, I recommend looking into the Paris Museum Pass. Continue reading “Paris Museum Pass: Is It Worth It?”

Parisian Glitz & Glamour at the Palais Garnier

Imagine a place steeped in Parisian history, the former playground of kings and noblemen and the home of stunning frescoes and architecture. I’ll bet you thought of the Château de Versailles, the famed royal residence of King Louis XIV and later Marie Antoinette.

While Versailles is worth a trip out of Paris any day, this French gem is located right in the heart of Paris. The Palais Garnier, or Opera Garnier, gives the ninth arrondissement its name, and is located just a smidge outside of the centrally-located second arrondissement. Designed to be the crown jewel at the end of the Avenue de l’Opéra, the Opera Garnier is one of the most beautiful buildings in Paris. Continue reading “Parisian Glitz & Glamour at the Palais Garnier”

Rome Day 3

First-time visitors to Rome usually have one common goal: to see the Colosseum. The epic monument is recognized across the world; the place of ancient bloody battles and screaming crowds of spectators. Think of it as the original sports stadium.

Dan and I visited the Colosseum on our third and final full day in Rome. We’d visited many of the other “must-sees” on our first day in the city, and we had saved the best for last. Continue reading “Rome Day 3”

Rome Day 2

Well, I suppose it was inevitable to have a few bad hours at some point during our European adventure. That moment came near the end of our two week trip, on the day we were suppose to visit the Vatican City.

We woke up early that day and picked up pastries and espresso on our walk to St. Peter’s Square. The sun was shining, we got our first glimpse of the River Tiber and its many gorgeous bridges, and we hadn’t gained a single pound despite two weeks of nonstop gorging. What could go wrong? Continue reading “Rome Day 2”

Rome Day 1

When I think back on our time in Rome, I remember the warm weather, the colorful buildings, the dark cobbled streets, and the happiness I felt at being there with Dan.

On our first night in Rome, however, we were feeling a bit jaded and less than charmed by the city. It probably didn’t help that we had just flown in from Paris, where we had spent the last five days being swept off our feet. Not wanting to repeat the dreadful experience of dragging our luggage through trains and along tiny streets, we opted to take a cab from the airport directly to our hotel near Piazza Navona. The cab ride took us past some pretty seedy-looking areas, with graffiti covering crumbling walls and what essentially looked like a series of American strip malls. It was not the glorious, brightly lit Rome I’d coveted in other people’s vacation photos, and I started to wonder if we should have just spent our last vacation days in Paris after all. Continue reading “Rome Day 1”

Rome: First Impressions of the Eternal City

In the interest of moving things along, I wanted to go ahead and share how Dan and I spent the final leg of our Euro Trip in Rome. There will be three more posts in this series, one for each day, and then it’s back to our regularly-scheduled programming. Lord knows I’m not done writing about Paris or sharing the hundreds of photos we took while abroad!

When Dan and I first began planning our spring trip to France, we knew we wanted to tack on a quick visit to Italy. Neither of us had been to the country before, but we were drawn to the beautiful scenery, the rich history, and the idea of eating real Italian food. Our initial wish list included stops in Rome, Venice and Capri, but in the end, we only had the time and budget to visit one of our top picks. Continue reading “Rome: First Impressions of the Eternal City”

The Beauty of Notre Dame de Paris

August 2014: The wind whipped through our hair as we emerged onto the first level of Notre Dame Cathedral, stinging our eyes and soothing our overworked bodies. The climb to the Chimera Gallery, the walkway connecting the two towers of the cathedral, had left us hot, sweaty and gasping for air. And as we stepped out onto the walkway, hair flying everywhere and partially obscuring our view over the city of Paris, it was all worth it. Continue reading “The Beauty of Notre Dame de Paris”