Thursday, August 20, 2015

Three Days in Venice

My Adventure
Hello everyone! If you haven't seen my last blog post (Four Fantastic Days in Florence), make sure you check that our before reading this.

The next location that I went to after visiting Florence was Venice, and this was the last stop that I made in Italy. I think that Venice was the most unique place that I visited on my whole adventure to Europe. Although Venice is considered an island, it is still connected to the mainland, but there are no cars allowed on the “island”, so the only transportation besides walking is by boat. We were only in Venice for 3 days, so my family and I decided that once we arrived in Venice, we were going to make the most of each day that we were there. When we arrived, it was about 12:00 in the afternoon and we quickly headed out of the train station so that we wouldn't miss our boat ride over to the part of the island where we were staying. We got on the boat and when we arrived at our hotel, we unpacked and headed out to explore. There were so many amazing things that I had read about Venice online, and I had no idea how we were supposed to fit everything into three days. We started by going to a local restaurant to get lunch, and then went to a nearby church. After looking at the church for about an hour, we decided that it would be nice to just walk around outside and see if there was anything interesting that we might bump into. We saw amazing architecture and waterways and eventually found the place where we would be eating dinner. After dinner, we walked around the island for a few more hours and then decided to return to the hotel.
The next morning, we decided that we would walk over to the Rialto Bridge and get a good view of Venice. When we arrived, there were hundreds of people, but the view was amazing. We spent about 30 minutes on the bridge just looking at the view and taking pictures. When we decided that we were finally done with he crowds of people, we went down the other side of the bridge to a local market. We saw fresh fish and produce, but had no room for it in our hotel, so we just ended up buying some fruit and continued to explore. We walked for about an hour, and eventually found our way around to a branch of the island that gave us an amazing view and a nice quiet area to relax and take in everything that we had seen in the past few days.  We sat near the water for a few minutes and then decided to look into one of the buildings nearby. We took a few quiet pathways back towards our hotel and discovered a place for dinner and desert. After dinner, we did what we had been looking forward to the entire time… a gondola ride!! Although it was dark when we did the boat ride, and there weren't many chances for great pictures, it was a great time to take a break from the social world and take in the extravagant and exciting culture that was happening all around us. After about two hours, we finished our gondola ride, and returned to our hotel.
The next an final morning, we packed up the things we had, due to the fact that we had to leave the hotel by 11:00 am. We got some breakfast and returned to the hotel to pick up our bags. We got our bags and checked out of the hotel, but we still had a few hours before our train left to go to Munich, so we decided that we would walk around Venice for the last time with all of our luggage (bad idea). The streets in Venice are all cobblestone which made wheeling out bags that much harder, so we eventually just had to carry our bags which was a little difficult. Then the time came to get on the boat that would be taking us back to the train station. We arrived at the station after about 20 minutes, and hustled over to board our overnight train to Munich, Germany.

Look for a new blog post soon which will explain 3 tips when visiting Venice. If you enjoyed this blog post, please let me know by liking it, and by following me on instagram or bloglovin, or leaving a comment. To contact me, my email is Thank you so much. Talk to you next week!

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Monday, March 2, 2015

3 Tips When in Florence

1.) Research
  • Make sure you know what you are going to see because there are a lot of things in Florence, and you want to make sure that you know what you can fit into your schedule.

2.) Don’t over-schedule 
  • In tip number one, I said make sure that you can fit everything into your schedule, but that doesn’t mean cram everything in so that you don’t have any free time.
  • One of the things that I enjoyed the most about Florence was walking around on a tour and seeing something that looked interesting, but that wasn't included on my tour. This meant that I would write it down and come back later when I had an open spot in my schedule.

3.) Location, not Popularity
  • Don't always assume that the most popular spots are the best places to visit. Although you will probably end up going to the popular tourist attractions, some of the best spots that I discovered were basically “secret,” but we found them because of their central location.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Four Fantastic Days in Florence

My Adventure
Hello Everyone! If you haven’t read my previous blog (Seven Spectacular Days in Rome), check that out before reading this.

My family and I left in the morning from Rome, and arrived in Florence at around noon. The weather was beautiful, and with so much history in Florence, and so little time to see everything we made the best of our time. We went from the train station to our hotel near central Florence. After being on a train for the whole morning, we left our hotel in search for a place to eat. Walking around in the middle of the day was amazing. There were so many things going on, and the architecture of the buildings was amazing to experience firsthand after seeing it so many times in pictures. After finding a good place to eat lunch, we continued walked around Florence. We found the Duomo, and some of the other buildings that we would be going into on a later date with our tour guide. After exploring for a few hours, we found a place to eat dinner, and went to bed.

The next morning, we woke up early because we had to meet our tour guide outside of our hotel. We explored museums and other well known places in Florence such as the Duomo. Our tour guide showed us different churches and houses of historical figures in Florence’s past. After exploring Florence, for the morning, we went to the most recommended place to eat in Florence, where I had the best lunch of my entire vacation. After lunch, we got some gelato, and went through the local marketplace to find items for friends and family. We spent the rest of our day at the marketplace, and after finding a local restaurant to eat, we went to bed early after a busy day. 

We slept in the next morning, but as soon as we were ready to go, we started exploring some parts of Florence that we hadn’t seen the day before. One of the things that we visited was the Plazzo Vecchio museum, which took up our morning, but informed us even more about the history of Florence. After that we got a quick lunch so that we could make the most of our last day in Florence. We explored the town a little bit more, and ended our day at Santa Croche, which was an amazing church in the middle of Florence. On our way back to the hotel, we stopped at a restaurant for dinner, and went through the local market. We stayed up late that evening, and went to bed with the excitement of traveling to Venice the next day.

      3 Tips when in Florence will be my next blog post. Expect that to come out next Monday. If you enjoy this blog, please let me know by liking this blog post, following me on instagram or bloglovin, or leaving a comment. To contact me, my email is Thank you so much. Talk to you next week!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

3 Tips When in Rome

  1. Get a tour guide 
  • Although you might already know a lot about the place, the tour guides know every last detail about everything. It is their job to know what they are talking about.
  • Tour guides in Rome are very nice and will usually teach you things about their culture, and they will also probably teach you common Italian vocabulary which will come in handy later on.

  1. Ask Locals
  • If you come from America, you will know that most people do not like to be bothered, and so you don’t usually ask people for their advice, but in Rome, the locals love to help.
  • Locals are also very happy to have a conversation with anyone.

  1. Don’t always trust the internet
  • It is ok to use the internet to find popular places, or recommended places in Rome, but the internet is not always right.
  • Many times when I was in Rome, the internet was wrong about restaurant popularity and business hours of local shops and restaurants.
  • This relates back to asking the locals. For the most part, ask the locals, or if you are staying in a hotel, ask the employees in the lobby.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone, and soon to be a happy new year. I just wanted to write this blog post to tell you what christmas means to me. For me, and I know this might be a little bit corny, Christmas is about spending time with family and friends. Ya, I do enjoy giving and receiving gifts, but Christmas is a time when family members and friends come home to see each other, and although I might not always feel like spending time with them, Christmas helps me realize how lucky I am to have a happy and healthy family that cares about me. I hope you all have had a wonderful Christmas and a happy holiday season. I'll see you soon with a blog about my adventure to Florence, and if you need to contact me, either leave a comment or send me an email: Lastly, don't forget to follow me on bloglovin.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Seven Spectacular Days in Rome

My Adventure
Hello everyone!
As you may have read in my previous blog, Rome is where I began my European adventure. My family and I spent six days there, and it was my favorite place as far as entertainment and history. On the first day in Rome, we arrived on our plane after fifteen hours of travel, and we didn't feel like doing much due to the jet lag, so we decided to rest up in preparation for the big things we had coming. After our “nap,” which lasted about 3 hours, we went out to explore the city. We went and ate lunch and then we went to see the Pantheon because it was right outside of our hotel. It was extremely crowded (just like all of the other tourist attractions in Rome). After exploring for a few hours, we went back to the hotel and prepared for dinner. We ate dinner just down the street from out hotel, and then decided to just go back to the hotel and sleep so that we could be ready for the next day which we knew was probably the most adventurous day in Rome. 

We woke up early the next morning, because we had to eat breakfast before we went on our tour. We quickly ate, and then scurried out of the hotel to meet up with our tour guide who was located right outside of the Roman Colosseum. Although the day started by frantically getting ready, we quickly calmed ourselves down to admire how incredible the Colosseum really was. We walked through the Colosseum and continued our tour amongst the amazing structures of the Romans. We stopped here and there to admire some of the magnificent buildings, but after a few hours, our tour came to an end. We decided that since we were far away from our hotel, it would be a good time to explore, so we ate lunch, and then went out to explore on our own. We visited a few churches and stopped in some shops along the way, but once it came closer to evening time, we decided to head back to the hotel, and get some sleep, since we were still extremely jet lagged from two days before.

We awoke at around 5:30 AM the next morning in preparation for another tour that we had scheduled. We gave ourselves enough time to get ready and be out the door so we wouldn't be rushed, and we arrived at The Vatican just in time for our tour. The great thing about this tour is that it started before The Vatican opened, so we were able to see everything in its full effect, which was amazing. The tour took us into The Vatican, through the Sistine Chapel, and back out to St. Peter’s Basilica. It was an amazing tour, and it was so much to take in in one day, but the experience is unforgettable! After much exploration of those areas, we walked downtown in the direction of our hotel, in search of something to eat. We had a late lunch at a small cafe in downtown Rome, and then headed back to our hotel, where we spent the rest of our night walking around the area and looking for interesting places that we could explore on a later date.

The next day, we were able to sleep in which was a relief after two days of nonstop exploration. We got a late start, and were out the door at around 9:30. We had breakfast, and then set off for Trevi Fountain. When we arrived after a few minutes of walking, we were shocked to see that it was under construction, and so we weren’t able to completely see it, because it was blocked off! We decided to keep moving, and not waste any time, so my family and I got a taxi and took it over to the park. We heard that there were some great activities available in the park, and so we went on a walk through the park in search for such activities. We rented out a five-person bike, and drove it through the beautiful park. We took pictures on the way and just admired the beautiful passageways covered by trees and elegant plants. We stayed at the park until later that evening, ate dinner, and then went to bed.

The next morning, we ate breakfast, and then wrote down a few possibilities for interesting places to visit. After asking many locals, and getting different opinions, we decided that the best place to go would be the Trastevere, which was a town about 15 minutes away from where we were staying that contained many different cultures and lots of interesting shops. We got ready to leave, and got a taxi to the Trastevere. It was extremely crowded, and it reminded me of a busy city like New York, but without the large buildings. We started off by checking out some of the local shops and cafes and chose the places where we would eat. We then took some time to explore some of the well-known buildings and monuments. It was interesting to see how each part of the town was “split up” in terms of cultural and religious practices. As it reached evening time, we strolled over to the restaurant that we had selected earlier, and ate a delicious meal. We were stuffed, and so we decided to walk to our hotel, and go to bed.

We woke up, on the last day in Rome, with no exact plans. We went through what we had done in the past few days, and decided that we enjoyed the bike ride in the park the most, and that we wanted to go do that again. We packed up most of our things, so we wouldn't have to do it all that night, and headed off to the park. We rode a bike around the park again, and found an amazing view over the entire city of Rome, and left after lunch to walk around and enjoy our last night. We went to dinner very early, and talked about all of the fun things that we had during the first six days of our month long adventure. After dinner, we walked around the city for about an hour, and then went to bed.
Early the next morning, I woke up to take pictures of the Pantheon when nobody was there, and then got about another hour of sleep before we got ready to leave. We all got up at around 7:00, packed up our remaining items, and left Rome on a train on our way to Florence.

Florence will be my next blog post. Expect that to come out next Monday, at around the same time as this blog, maybe a little bit earlier. If you enjoy this blog, please let me know by liking this blog post, following me, or leaving a comment. To contact me, my email is You can follow me on Instagram at alexryan33, and you can follow me on blogloving at this link: Thank you so much. Talk to you next week!

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Friday, August 1, 2014

Europe Adventure Overview

Hello Everyone!
I just recently returned from my family vacation to Europe. I was gone for three and a half weeks, and traveled all across the western side of Europe. My adventure began in Rome, which was probably my favorite city as far as history and entertainment. We spent six days there, and then took a train to Florence. For me, Florence was probably my least favorite location that we visited, but it was still an amazing sight to see. My favorite part of Florence was the gelato. It was the best gelato place that we ate at whilst in Europe (and we had gelato almost every night). After spending two days in Florence, we took another train to Venice, and a water taxi to our hotel. We stayed in Venice for three days. Venice was the most unique place that we visited. It is considered an island, although it is still connected to the mainland. There were no cars allowed in Venice, and the streets were used for people to get around by walking, so the only form of transportation was to take a boat through the extensive labyrinth of waterways. After our stay in Venice, we left Italy altogether, and took an overnight train to Germany.

We arrived in Munich, Germany on the overnight train early the next morning, and spent three days in Munich. On the second day, we spent the whole day in Salzburg, Austria on a very entertaining and scenic tour. In Munich we spent a lot of time in the beer gardens which were practically the public hangout locations for the locals, which were very crazy. We took a train on the next day to Switzerland

Before we arrived in Switzerland, we took a quick detour to some of the castles that were on the way to Switzerland. The castles were stunningly beautiful and they overlooked some of the small towns. After our stop at the castles, we continued to Switzerland, which to me was definitely the most beautiful place. We stayed in a small town in Switzerland called Wengen. We spent five days in Switzerland going on amazing nature hikes and relaxing. We woke up early to catch a train after our stay in Switzerland. Our next and final stop was Paris, France.

The train ride to Paris was two hours and we arrived in Paris in the late morning. It gave us lots of time to get to our apartment, get settled, and go explore Paris. We spent a total of five days in Paris. During those five days, we took a few tours, explored Paris on bikes, and relaxed. 

By the time we were done with this vacation, we were definitely ready to come home, but it was the most entertaining and eye opening vacation that I had ever experienced. The many different cultures that we experienced helped me realize the diversity of Europe and just see how unique it truly is. 

This is just a brief overview of the trip, but there will be more detailed descriptions of each location that I traveled to in separate blogs, as well as many more pictures to share with you. Each one of these blogs will be coming in the next few weeks. Expect my next blog in a few days. Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram at: alexryan33 and if you have any questions, my email is: If you have any recommendations for me, please leave them in the comments down below.

Thank you so much for reading, and I will talk to you later this week.