Rome is somewhere I've always wanted to go and the idea of combining a weekend away with friends and watching Wales in the Six Nations made perfect sense to us. So a couple of weekends ago eight of us headed out to the Italian capital for a few days of culture, rugby and many, many wines!
Exploring the city by foot (we walked everywhere!) was good for my people-watching and observation skills as it gave me a chance to try out some street photography while on the move. I love people-watching as you get to see a bit of everything: the good, the bad, the ugly... and in Rome, the beautiful.
It can also be relatively cheap in Rome, unless like us you literally eat and drink EVERYTHING – we had lots of excellent food plus several gallons of ice cream and a ton of wine... I mean who can turn down 7 euros for a litre of exquisite Italian Chianti?
(I didn't have any liver or fava beans with the Chianti, though.)
On the first night after steak, pizza and a few wines us boys decided to explore the city at 2am to try to find the Vatican. It was totally worth it seeing it all lit up and as you would expect for that time in the morning was eerily quiet, almost like something from a horror film. But even at 2am the armed guards at St Peter's Square are on patrol. What made it even more worthwhile was that we stopped for ice cream on the way back to the apartment! Seriously, if there's one thing I've taken away from this trip it's that in the UK there is a distinct lack of ice cream parlours open at 3 in the morning!
On to match day, we made our way to Stadio Olimpico where we witnessed an extremely average game of rugby... thank God for all the Peroni! Even though it wasn't full to capacity it did seem like the Welsh had taken over the stadium. Sheep, leeks, daffodils and people in fancy dress costumes everywhere, as expected. Something that was unexpected was the mini festival on the grounds of the stadium after the game. Pop up bars, food stalls, music and bands, even a small area for people to practice their rugby tackling!
On the other days we managed to see all the main attractions: the Colosseum, the Spanish Steps (quite disappointing, not nearly as many steps as you'd expect!), Castel Sant'Angelo, Altare della Patria, Trevi Fountain, and of course St Peter's Square and the Vatican.
It was a great few days away with great friends sharing lots of food and many, many glasses of wine.
I hope you all enjoy the photos (Warning: there's quite a few!). I'd also love to hear your feedback on them so feel free to leave comments.
P.S. for Photographers:
As with the majority of my travel photography stuff, the only camera I took with me was the Fuji X100s. It really is the perfect one-in-all for travel and street photography - small enough to fit in your coat pocket, discreet enough not to get noticed, and SO MUCH FUN to shoot with. I had it set to Monochrome+R film simulation for most of the time (highlights -1, shadows +2, sharpness +2, noise reduction -2) and also had a bit of fun with the miniature mode.