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Introducing: Italy!

July 3, 2013

With the works of Brunelleschi…Donatello…Botticelli…Da Vinci…Raphael…Michelangelo…and Caravaggio studding the skylines of its cities and walls of its museums, Italy is an art historian’s dream.  And, after being away for almost 5 years, during which time Asia became my home and then primary destination, it was finally time to return to Europe!

View of Rome and Temple of Venus and Roma from atop the Colosseum.

View of Rome and the Temple of Venus and Roma from atop the Colosseum.

Europe was the continent on which I feel in love with travel six years ago.  It was where I took my first “real” trip abroad (save Mexico which is hard to count given its proximity to my native Texas), where I first experienced living abroad, and where I traveled solo for the first time.

Trevi Fountain (one of the few shots without tons of heads).

Trevi Fountain (one of the few shots without any heads).

But, between moving to Shanghai after college, returning to the States for grad school, and frequently visiting WWW in China, Europe hadn’t been high on the priority list since those initial visits.  However, when WWW asked me where I’d most like to go for his R&R, Italy was my first second (Greece will have to wait) choice!

Florence Cathedral (Duomo) at sunset.

Florence Cathedral (Duomo) at sunset.

This was the first time in Italy for both of us, so we decided to spend our 8 days in the country’s heavy-hitters, Rome and Florence.  We booked the trip to coincide with my spring break and (not so intentionally) the papal conclave.

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Piazza Navona and Piazza del Popolo in Rome.

I am thrilled to start the coverage of our adventures in Italy this week and can’t wait to share all of the memories made touring museums, visiting cathedrals, and eating copious amounts of pasta and pizza.  Italy is a truly magical place and perhaps our favorite country we’ve visited as a couple to date.

For now, here is a peek at some of my favorite photos of the trip.

Exterior of Roman building near the Pantheon.

Exterior of Roman building near the Pantheon.

Eating one of the many cups of gelato on this trip.

Eating one of the many cups of gelato on this trip.

Pitti Palace and gardens in Florence.

Pitti Palace and gardens in Florence.

WWW and I at the Piazzale Michelangelo.

WWW and I at the Piazzale Michelangelo.

Have you been to Italy?  Did it win your heart the way it did ours?

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