European {Honeymoon-Inspired} Travel Journal: Rome, Italy

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European {Honeymoon-Inspired} Travel Journal: Rome, Italy

Continuing with CB's European Honeymoon-Inspired Travel Journal series, remember how I told you I was heading south to Italy for Christmas? Well, I finally have the photos edited and I'm ready to share! It was so wonderful to travel with a friend that I hadn't seen in awhile {T, I already miss you! xox.}. We had a fabulous Roman adventure together and I'll always look back on it fondly.

And I can't wait to take J to this beautiful city. Rome oozed romance with every step ... the soft pastels of the painted buildings and the muted grey/green of the Tibere river seemed to melt together in harmony. And the food, gahhhh, ... after enjoying the freshest bruschetta, the most amazing pastas and the divine array of scrumptious gelato {I adooooored the Coco!}, I honestly didn't want to leave ... And everyone was so friendly and accomodating - I can't imagine a better place for a romantic getaway, honeymoon or not.

Enjoy the eye candy and scroll down for some of my top tips for visiting beautiful Roma, Italia ..

We enjoyed several heavenly scoops of gelato every single day we were in town. It was too good not to! ;o)

We came across a Christmas-themed market/festival in the Piazza Navona. As the sun slipped away, the dusky haze looked amazing against the bright lights of the carousel. The colors of the buildings never ceased to amaze me, either ... each looked like a chipping fresco ... colors that could only come to be by the graceful aging of time.

You know I'm a sucker for adorable vintage cars ... pitter pat pitter pat ...

Our first evening in the city, we walked from our houtel down to the Colosseum ... It was hauntingly beautiful with a full moon in the background.

One of the first things I noticed upon arriving in Rome were the cool, bonsai-like trees everywhere. I couldn't figure out what type of tree they were but after a little research, I found that they are simple pine trees that were heavily pruned to achieve their current look. I love.

The Trevi fountain was glorious.

We visited St. Peters' Square and the Vatican Museum ...

Built in 1932 by Giuseppe Momo, even the staircase is a piece of art in the Vatican Museo.

On Christmas Eve, we returned to St. Peter's square and waited for a few hours in a very long line ...

... so we could gain entrance to St. Peter's Basilica for midnight mass with the Pope. {That's him on the left} It was more than magical and I couldn't believe how close we were to Pope Benedict! When we left the basilica, seeing the crowd in the square was incredibly powerful, as well:

We were able to re-visit the Colosseum during the day and went inside. Wow.

Wish I would have been able to see the Damien Hirst exhibit ... ahh well.

I jotted down some of my tips in case you plan to visit Rome, too ... {and tune in tomorrow for a special style edition on Rome!}

CB's Top Tips for Rome, Italy:
-- If you live somewhere that gets chilly in the winter, plan a winter escape to Rome! We left snow and ice in Germany for sunshine and 50-60 degree temps {with a bit of rain but I'm not about to complain}. I relished every moment and made sure to rub it in when I got home! ;o)

-- If you're in Rome for Christmas, make every effort you can to attend midnight mass with the Pope. You won't regret it!

-- This may sound rather silly to most of you but while you're in Italy, eat Italian. Please do not be one of those American tourists who seeks out the Hard Rock Cafe for a burger and greasy fries. I enjoyed some of the most delicious courses of my life while in Rome and can't wait to go back.

-- If it's raining and you just want to stay dry or warm up {or maybe in the summer cool down}, head to the Roma Termini {train station}. My friend and I waited out the rain for a bit inside and enjoyed shopping with locals ... we found some gorgeous scarves and enjoyed some of the best {and least-expensive} gelato at one of the quickie-stops inside.

-- Get a stack of movies that were filmed in Rome and watch them with your honey either before you go or after you return. It's always fun to recognize places you've been! I recommend Roman Holiday and The Talented Mr. Ripley but there are many more from which to choose. Make it a corny {but fun!} themed night by lighting candles {the drippier the better}, making pasta and sharing Tiramisu together.

-- Soak up the street fashion. It's Italy - fabulous for people watching!

If you have any tips, insights, suggestions or comments, I'd love to hear them! Hope you enjoyed this installment of the European {Honeymoon-Inspired} Travel Journal! Up next is Luzern, Switzerland! ;o)Happy Honeymooning! And to catch up on my other European travel entries, just click here.

{All images by me}

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