Saturday, 24 September 2016
The very last leg of our incredible journey. We arrived in Pisa late afternoon and headed straight away to find our airport hostel to ditch our bags. Pisa was a strange place to visit for us and especially since it was the last stop of the trip we could of really made the most of it and spent our money on a nice hotel and expensive meal. But for some reason we instinctively went for the cheapest place we could find and ended up almost not being let in to a small block of flats that was supposed to be where we were staying. When we did get finally greeted, the girl looked like she had just been crying and wearily showed us our room and took our money. How was it the last place we stayed at was the worst of the entire trip?! How!! We left the room quickly, with food and exploring on our minds and headed out to find the Tower of Pisa. Very impressive (I guess), it seemed the only location there were masses of tourists around. We sat around there for a bit until we decided to go find a nice place to get some food. That was a challenge. We would come across a few places but the number of flies around were disgusting. And they would just land anywhere or buzz around our faces. We ended up sitting inside in a small restaurant and had a decent meal. Then we decided to sit outside by the river at a bar for a drink or two. That was nice and we got talking to a waiter about my film cameras, until a fight broke out in the square that turned really nasty - one of the guys ran into the bar section and grabbed a chair to throw it at the other guy. It was horrific, I was really shaken. You know when you just feel like a situation is about to get worse and worse and there's nothing you can do about it. Thankfully a few other people got involved and diffused the situation and one of the guys rode off on a bike, but it completely ruined the atmosphere and to be honest all I wanted to do was go back to our room.
When we got back to our room for the night, the heat was incredible. Of course our small room had no air-con and we realised that because we had left our window open, we had a fair few mosquitos come to join us. I was so determined not to get bite on my last night :( We went on a killing spree and sealed up all the windows, but I didn't want to let myself sleep. So I read for a while, while the temperature in our room increased more and more and the light was left on so that any flying movement could be seen. What a night... We had a conversation at one point so just go now and find another place to stay because the conditions were so ridiculous. I fell asleep around 2am in the end and woke back up by 6am, ready to get ready and get out! We then began our short walk to the airport and had our flight in the morning, arriving back to the coldness of Bristol at 11am.
I feel like I should just say a thanks to everyone whose taken an interest in our trip, it makes me so happy that people are viewing these posts (maybe not reading everything I write but that's ok). I hope people have managed to get something out of these posts, maybe you have decided on your next holiday destination, or even want to now explore Europe as we did. All I can say extra is just DO IT!! There are so many incredible natural wonders so close to home, the heat for me was enough of a bonus to want to do it all over again. At the end of the day, these posts and photos will be all I'll have of this trip when I'm old and wrinkly and have forgotten I even went and I can't wait to look back at it all and think, wow what an amazing time we had!! For now I'm fully determined to start planning the next trip somewhere else in this magnificent world.
Friday, 23 September 2016
Florence for us was pretty much the last place on our list before setting off back home. We arrived there around mid-afternoon and after some confusion found where we were staying (it was a BnB inside a warehouse so we originally went straight past it). After settling in we set out to explore. We were both pretty hungry - I don't think we had had a decent lunch. So we sat down at the first restaurant we saw and filled our stomachs. We came across the cathedral first and I couldn't believe how amazing it was! I hadn't been expecting it at all. I loved all the detailing of it and its unusual colours. We then walked on towards the river, to see the other part that Florence is famous for. The ponte vecchio. It was so busy lmao! And people selling artwork everywhere. We walked across the bridge, taking in its uniqueness and looked around a bit on the otherside before stopping at a bridge a bit further down. The sun was setting by now and we didn't really want to head back to our room just yet. So we found a ledge hidden behind the wall of the bridge to sit down on and watch the sun set, with a tub of delicious gelato to share. It was so beautiful! The colours so warm and lovely. We sat their until the sun disappeared and only the colours of dusk remained and then began a slow walk back, stopping at a small pizzeria on the way.
The next day we decided to explore Florence some more and headed past the Catherdral and the river to a castle further up. We had set out early (around 9am) so it was crazy to see such ginormous queues for the Cathedral already. No way were we going to join them, although I bet the inside is magnificent. So we found a castle up on the hillside and bought tickets to go have a wander around and got a good view of the whole of Florence - such a beautiful city. Once we felt we'd done enough we made our way to the train station and began our journey to our final destination, Pisa.