I set 2014 off in traveller style by booking a last minute trip to Rome, Italy with my five oldest friends. I've been to Rome before and loved it so was excited to reconnect with the cities history, food and people.
It didn't disappoint. In fact I ate better than I ever had before, including a delicious lobster pasta dish at my favourite restaurant Ciao Bella (I can call it my favourite now as I've been on both occasions).
I especially enjoyed St Peters Cathedral where I unloaded my heavy heart with prayer, stepping outside in the square to a gorgeous sunset cutting through the otherwise miserable grey sky.
A bummer was getting robbed while out and about at the Colosseum and having to spend far too long at a local police station filing a report and borrowing money from my bestie, I tried not to let it dampen my spirit and enjoyed each evening 'happy in the haze of a drunken hour'.
- Book your flights and accommodation separately. It will work out better than any of the 'deals' Groupon offer you and at least you can source your own diggs.
- If it's a short trip make use of the 3day travel card, cheaper than buying daily tickets. Plus if you're there for four or five days you can spend one or two exploring your local area - especially if you're central to some of the attractions.
- Please, please, please keep your bag and purse out of sight when wandering. I was to naive as I thought I was well travelled but thief's at tourist attractions are experts. Keep it back to front or even better under your coat.
- Definitely visit the Vatican Museum, it's such good value to soak up so much history. If you're a little tight on cash, you can enter the church and cathedral at St Paul's without buying a ticket and this alone is breathtaking.
- Dine out somewhere fancy at least for one evening. When in Rome and all that...
- Wander the back streets and see where you end up, Rome isn't as big as London and you'd be surprised how much of it you can see on foot. This is great for finding little cafes and details of the city you might otherwise miss.