A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
Being in spring with nice weather, Easter holiday is probably the most perfect time to travel. I was lucky enough to be done with all my exams for the first half of this semester before Easter. I had at least 10 days where I can travel before going back to university struggles such as thesis drafts and new courses beginning. Together with one of my classmates, I travelled to Italy and spend there a week visiting Rome, Naples and Procida island. After, for the first time after I completed my Erasmus year 3 years ago, I went to Munich to get back together with my two best friends from Erasmus.
In this 4-part series, I would like to share my experiences from each stop of my Easter trip and will try to provide a short guide for each, mostly on what to eat. Let’s start with the first stop: Rome. You can read my article about flying from Eindhoven Airport to know how to get there.
Well, if you think a Mediterranean a heaven as Italy will always be nice and sunny in spring (as we did while planning), don’t. Leaving the Netherlands sunny and landing to pouring rain in Rome was quite a surprise. But, luckily, we had our raincoats with us so we could survive the occasional rain during our 4 days stay there.
The only thing I can say about Rome is; wow. Apart from having so many famous and touristic stops such as Vatican City, Coliseum, Pantheon or Fountain of Neptune, you don’t even need to try to find something specific. In every corner, there is either a sculpture, a fountain, ruins of the old Roman empire or a beautiful building worth to see. This is probably the reason why we walked so much (over 20 km each day), despite public transportation is quite cheap with a ticket of one ride just over 1 EUR.
What/Where to eat?
I was lucky as my travel buddy has already been to Rome with her parents and knew the city, a lot more than me. Our motto was to have good lunches as we walked a lot and needed the energy. The first restaurant we went to was quite close to Vatican City. In the capital of pasta, the taste of dishes was definitely worth to remember, portions being a bit smaller though.
Best tiramisu I have ever had at a reasonable price and a nice cup of coffee? Yes, please! You may get tiramisus with pistachios, forest fruits or strawberries. As a side note, be careful about coffee prices and don’t pay more than 2 EUR strictly. Here, for instance, it was 1.2 EUR while we have even been asked for 4 EUR.
My favourite was this restaurant decorated quite simply with tasty dishes. We got one risotto and spaghetti with asparagus and seafood. It was both delicious and quite filling this time. You might also give a try to Crème Brule with a crispy layer of sugar on top.
Oh well, probably one of the best options is to lose yourself in the street food. You may go traditional with thin large slices of countless kinds of pizza or try a suppli, fried rice ball traditionally filled with tomato sauce and cheese, a typical Roma food. But you can also find it in different flavours.
Make sure you catch happy hours and get some Spritz to enjoy nice evenings, for as little as 2 EURs.
Have you already been to Rome? Are you planning to go? Will you give these a try? Let me know in the comments!