Susan M

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Susan M

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May242013

Tour/Activity

Pompeii Day Trip from Rome

Rome, Italy

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Awesome day trip! Very comfortable bus, stopping half-way for a break, and big windows for viewing. Pompei, the ancient city, was incredible! The city is very large and there was 2 hours there, viewing the ruins. The guide was very knowledgeable and his pace was perfect. Lunch was very, very good and you had a choice of appetizer and entree. Then, we went up the mountain, winding around the steep hill, to reach the top (almost the top) of Mt. Vesuvius. The final walk to the crater's edge was optional. Keep in mind, that even in late May, it was much colder at the top, so bring a coat, as it was probably 45 F degrees there, and 70 degrees at the bottom that day. My son did the walk, not I, as I have a bad back, but he made it to the top in 20 minutes(he's 29). The view is spectacular! This was a highlight of our vacation. Only wish we had more time in Pompei, but perhaps next time! I suggest reading up on Pompei before you go so you are familiar with what you will see. Dark Rome Tours did a great job, and we took 6 of their tours that week.

May232013

Tour/Activity

Skip the Line: Hard Rock Cafe Rome

Rome, Italy

My Rating
3 star rating: Worth doing

My Review

The so-called "skip the line" was a joke! We waited 20 minutes, just like everyone else who walked in the door! Food was your typical Hard Rock food, but if you have a craving for American food during your stay, this is where you want to go. Would I do this again? Nope.....too long of a wait!

May222013

Tour/Activity

Papal Audience Ticket at Vatican City

Rome, Italy

My Rating
5 star rating: Highly Recommended

My Review

Picked us up at our hotel (just make sure a day or 2 ahead that you contact them to make SURE they are picking you up versus meeting them somewhere), we switched buses to a bigger bus, and were taken very close to the square. We were there around 8:15am, grabbed our chair(hang on to it!) and waited. It's a long wait, but around 9am a clergyman gets on the microphone and reads a long list of visiting groups. This took about an hour while the various groups cheered when their name was called. Around 10:15 am, the Pope appeared in his Popemobile. The crowd near the Pope's path was very deep, so I suggest standing on your chair to a picture of him when he goes by. He goes around twice, so, if you missed him the first time, there's another opportunity. Then he goes to the stage...great photo op if you have a zoom lense. He speaks and it is translated in various languages, and near the end he blesses objects you may have brought. I bought my rosaries, holy cards, and other religious objects beforehand in the US, but you can also buy them in any of the many souvenir shops in Rome. They are cheap in the stores, like 2-5 euros, but more near the Vatican. It's nice to give as gifts, saying its been blessed by Papa Francesco, as they call him. The ceremony is over around 11:30am, and we met our guide outside the ropes and then walked quite far, maybe 1/4 mile, to get back on the bus. Well worth the trip, one I will never forget!

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