On day three of my Roman adventure, I visited five beautiful Italian cities. I saw some of the most famous architecture in the world and ate my way through each city one delicious scoop of gelato at a time.
At 1pm on a Thursday in April, my cousin and I found ourselves lost in one of the most quaint, quite and charming Italian towns ever. With the two of us only partially versed in Spanish and completely clueless about the Italian language, we were sent in many different directions upon trying to find our way back to the main road.
While wandering the narrow streets, I couldn’t help but imagine that I had seemingly escaped the modern world. Everyone around was dressed in regular clothing, but Montepulciano itself is reminiscent of another century. Cobble stone roads and endless hills that lead you down new paths with every step, this Italian town’s medieval charm is still a vital part of its culture.
That was just one of the many mini yet lasting adventures we found ourselves on that day.
Before reaching Montepulciano, a quick stop to Orvieto was made. Another charming and quite Italian town, Orvieto is home to one of the most ornate cathedrals I’ve ever laid eyes on (next to Notre Dame). It’s hard to miss the Orvieto Cathedral, as it’s the first structure you lay eyes on upon entering the town. Grand and covered in gold, I spent a majority of my time in the town admiring the fine architectural details and designs of the cathedral and dancing on the steps like a giddy child who made their way into an ice cream store on a hot day – architecture is one of my favorite things to appreciate when traveling.
Not only did Orvieto house a brilliant cathedral, it also was home to one of the most amazing views of the Italian countryside – endless rolling hills and lush green fields. What more could anyone ask for in a view?
With beautiful Orvieto and Montepulciano in the distance, we found ourselves traveling to Florence. Again, as a self-proclaimed architecture nerd, I quickly fell in love in Florence. Looking out in the distance from a view point, I spotted the Florence Cathedral in the distance. Specifically, I zoned in on the amazing architectural structure known as Brunelleschi’s Dome. Love at first sight is how I will describe what happened here. We made our way into the city center and I ran towards the cathedral like child runs into a toy store: with pure excitement and awe. Again, I stood there and admired the dome and cathedral. There are few things more amazing than that structure. It sparks a sort of wonder in anyone who sees it.
After being dragged away from the cathedral, I proceeded to roam Florence, looking for all the art of I learned about in the past two years. Naturally, I stopped for a scoop of gelato which was the cherry on top of my brief Florentine adventure.
Finally, we found ourselves in Pisa. Of course, like in Florence, I left my family behind to make my way over to the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Few architectural structures in the world leave one as perplexed and enamored as this one. Stark white in color and detailed in style, you can’t deny the fact that the tower is obviously askew. If you’ve never seen it in person, you could easily think it’s a hoax. I assure, however, that this no sham.
Surrounded by lush grass fields, the tower leans with pride as tourists crowd around and admire this peculiar architectural mystery. So I spent my evening watching the sunset over the Leaning Tower and slowly falling in love with all that Italy had to offer. Soon after the sun began to set, I found myself back in a car driving towards Rome. For a brief moment in time, I got to call Rome my home as a crawled my way back into my bed after a long and wondrous day.
Italia, sei bella.