Venice sounds like a clichée, but it was actually super nice! To get there by train you have to drive over a long bridge and when you get out of the (St. Lucia) trainstation, you are stepping right out on the canals!
Although this place was completely packed with tourists, I enjoyed every bit of walking the narrow streets, seeing the gondolas go by and smelling the food that was cooked along the way. I noticed how every bridge over the canals were constructed in different ways and it was not the most famous ones, like “the Bridge of Sighs” or “the Grand Canale” bridge that was the most beautiful in my opinon. It was the quiet ones where daily life went on for locals.
The Bridge of Sighs is probably the most famous and therefore full of tourists
We only spent the shorter part of a day in Venice and we could have easily spent more. This city lived, by far, up to its expectation and just walking around in the streets was like getting lost in a maze where there was something beautiful around every corner.
Rimini, known as the city with a thousand hotels is located in the middle of the Italian Riviera and is a popular holiday destination both for Italians and other Europeans.
During the time that we were there, a festival called Rimini Beach Festival was going on so there was plenty of food stands, music concerts and people who were there to visit. The 15 kilometer long beach was full of people in sunchairs, playing volleyball or renting out kayaks, wind surfboards and scooters.
Rimini is also the Italian city which is closest to San Marino so frequent buses run, there costing 5€ and taking 45 minutes each way.
Although the city also has some historical monuments and a nice little city center we spent most of our time at Sunflower hostel, walking along the beach and driving around on our rental scooter.
The streets of Florence/Firenze
For me interrailing is the best of what life can offer. You can go out in a city, pick a random train to go sleep on and then wake up in another countre. Me and my friend Sondre had bought a global pass and were ready to use this to the max.
First off after Rome was Firenze. We got off walked around the city center to see the fortress and churches that the city is famous for and got on the train again after a couple of hours. Next up was Bologna, where we did the same spontaneous walk around before we went shopping for food and made a picnic in the park.
We did not have planned to visit either of these palaces, but interrail ticket gives you the flexibility of just jumping off the train quite spontaneously and getting on the next one once you feel like it. Quite a genious concept!
The entrance to the park, next to the Bologna Train Station.
Rome is a city I had wanted to visit my whole life. It used to be the center of the coolest empire in all of human history and now a lot of the remains still stand tall in the middle of the city. One of these was one of the seven new wonders of the World, called Coloseo where gladiators had been fighting a couple of thousand years ago. Another was the Piazza Venecian, which was a huge white marble building with fountains, statues and pillars. Quite some majestic sights!
All these sights were easily reached with the metero as there was a stop right outside our hostel called the Yellow. The hostel had also been rated among the top 10 party hostels in the World, so the happy hour and live music there lead us to meet some Australians who took us with them to the Rome Ice Club. Being 37°C during the day and still hot and humid at night it was a pleasant experience walking into -5°C with a cape and a drink made into an ice glass.
Of course we also did our compulsory visit to the Holy See, a.k.a the Vatican. The smallest country in the World and the home to Francis the pope. We went to the St. Peters Square where the pope does his speaches and almost felt the holy precence watching the fountains and buildings lit up at night. Rome has been like walking through an open air museum which makes it one of the coolest cities that I have ever been to!
Oops, it seems like I did not bother to write about my travels in this country, but don’t you worry. I will probably come back there sometime in the future, so stay tuned!