Monday, June 3, 2019

Lucky 13 in Rome - Family Europe Trip Part 2

Rome was second on our stop on our family 
Europe trip.  We flew from London to Rome, 
took the train to Termini Station and then a taxi 
from Termini to our Airbnb  (click to see it - wow!)
situated on  Piazza Barberini.  (To travel to London or 
Paris on Delta from Salt Lake we can get non-stop
flights and they were much cheaper than flying to
or home from Rome.)

(Looking down on Piazza Barberini from the master bedroom.)

The only other time I had visited 
Rome was almost 25 years ago and we went  
with another couple and he drove.  We stayed outside 
of the city, and so I was least familiar with Rome, 
and was the most nervous about getting our tribe 
around in Rome. So I decided to look for an
Airbnb within walking distance of the major

 Penthouse BELLISIMA!!!

We were blown away with our accomodations 
after having just had a typical London place! 
Let me say I got so many hugs from everyone, 
once we walked around what we called,

Of course we all took our turns posing on
the gorgeous couch in the master suite.





This place had it all and for a very reasonable 
price considering we were a party of 13.

And bathrooms - ahhhh amazing bathrooms,

After having left London with one beautiful 
bath and one small one between two rooms,
and the final one that had a tiny toilet room with
a shower across the hall - the travelers were
so amazed!

The manager told us that the owners had spent 
three years throughout Europe finding the 
decor for this penthouse suite.  It actually 
consisted of a separate Penthouse bedroom 
with couch and fireplace, table for four, large 
bathroom, a covered deck with a hot tub and 
a tiny galley kitchen (no microwave), and three 
additional bedrooms and baths that could 
be rented as a separate unit. 

We weren't doing a lot of cooking so the 
tiny kitchen didn't matter much.  We had a 
wonderful pizza and pasta place literally 
next to our front door and someone ate from 
there daily.  There were also many other places 
to eat within a block.

We got settled in about 10:00 pm, and my one son 
said that Trevi Fountain was just a couple of blocks 
away, so we grabbed a slice of pizza next door,
and headed out for a night tour.  We actually saw 
a large night walking tour on our route, so we 
felt really good about being out and about.  

Trevi Fountain has to be seen at night.  It was so 
beautiful and uncrowded. 

This was the crowd the next day when we tried 
to squeeze our way through back to our place.

And of course, gelato stands were still open, 
so we began our gelato addiction that night. 

 We had started Rome 
on a real high, a real "pinch me" experience.

I had arranged for a three-day pass on the 
Big Bus, so we could hop on and off and move 
easily around the city and sites.  Much to my 
surprise, it stopped right in our Piazza Barberini.

Our first stop was Castle Sant Angelo, 
where we immediately stopped for another 
gelato - where I had my first Passion Fruit Sorbet, 
and so had to come home and make it again.  My 
sister Jean and I had been making it since my 
trip to Bora Bora a couple of years ago, where 
they had passion fruit everything - sweet and savory!

Ms Angelina got to go along on all of the daily jaunts, 
and was just perfect for that (of course she loved
Castle Sant Angelo - she thought she was named 
after it!)

Miss Madi K held down the fort at the Penthouse - 
and relaxed in style. (Notice my darling small zippered 
purse designed and given to me by Jenna at
The Painted Apron.)  She comes on lots of my 
vacations too holding heaphones, earplugs, etc.,
all of those little things that can get lost in 
Miss Madi K.

Parents and baby joined us at the Castle. 
They were always running a little more on 
her schedule, but they easily caught up every time. 

Off we went to St. Peters and the Vatican which was 
really convenient on the Big Bus.

It was fun to listen to the history and know 
what you were passing.  The kids really enjoyed 
the hop on hop off bus. 

Although, we did more walking in Rome than
any public transit, and that was 
everyone's favorite.  Everything was so close 
and convenient to our place. 

Rome was in it's spring glory!

I realized that driving as we did last time, we missed 
so much of the charm of Rome.  Rome is made to be walked. 

Everyone decided they were in love with Rome.

That afternoon came the crowning jewel and the 
motivation for the trip - The Rome Temple of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints,
of which we are members.  Several years ago when 
they announced the building of the Rome temple, 
I told the family I would take those 8 years and 
older.  One son and his family were expecting 
within weeks of our planned trip, so they put 
their own trip together and went to Europe in March. 

We found Uber very easy to use, rather than 
taking buses and changing them as the temple 
complex is out of town a little way.  Rome 
had Mercedes and Renault Uber vans that would 
fit 6-7 passengers and could easily handle a stroller, 
so it was inexpensive and convenient for our large group. 

Temples for our church are where families are sealed 
for time and eternity and where baptisms are done 
for our family members who didn't have the Gospel 
in this life.  

They are always open to the public for tours for 
about a month after they are completed.  After that 
you must be 12 and older and a practicing
member of the church.  We had planned on going 
to the open house, but when it was announced that 
it would take place in late January and early February, 
I told the family I would rather wait until it got warmer 
to visit Europe.

There is a gorgeous visitors' center that is open 
to the public, with a huge Christus and statues 
of the twelve ancient apostles of Jesus.

Our eight year old and the baby and I stayed outside 
and enjoyed the temple grounds and visitors center. 

While the two oldest grandkids did baptisms 
for their ancestors, with their grandpa doing the baptisms.

Hubby and I stayed later so we could do 
a session in the temple.  I was so happy to 
be there at dusk.  It is a huge temple with a 
chapel, a visitors center and family history center 
all set on a hill.  

We chose to go back there on Sunday to attend church 
in the chapel.  They provided headsets and a missionary 
translated the meeting through the headsets for us.  

I did my best to gather the tribe and get a few 
pictures of all of us together.  This is the Master Bedroom 
with the bed up on a platform in our Rome Penthouse.

Sunday after church we planned to take a picnic 
to the rose garden we had passed on the bus tour,
but just as we were getting ready to leave a 
major downpour and hail storm started, so we 
ate at home and went out later that afternoon. 

It wasn't sunny and beautiful, but the roses were glorious. 

Then we walked back to our place, passing buildings 
built around the time of Christ across the street from 
beautiful public buildings built in the 1800's.  It was 
such a grand place to walk and walk.

The Big Bus also had a purple line that took 
you down the Appian Way, where Roman 
troops used to march into Rome. 

It was so lush and green and picturesque.

Then by night fall we went over to see the 
Colosseum lit up.  You have to go out at 
night in Rome to see it in its splendor,

and so uncrowded!

Monday morning we were up early and were the 
very first group to enter the Colosseum for our 8:30 tour 
through the Gladiator's Gate.  Not all tours get to
go down on the floor of the Colosseum, so be 
careful when you book.  

I couldn't get all of us on the same tour, so
our group got to go on the floor, and we saw the 
rest of our group - admittedly they were only one 
step above us, but they felt jealous that they 
couldn't go down on the floor. 

When we had visited Rome years ago we went 
into the Colosseum but didn't take a tour.  I thought 
the tour was fascinating and well worth it,

and it included the Forum and Palentine Hill, which 
our kids loved even more than the Colosseum.  It was 
about a three hour tour.

Our lovely host let us put our bags in one room 
of the Penthouse so we could return from our
tour, grab a gelato and pizza, and Uber to the 
train station.  We loved Uber in Europe.

We all want to return to the Penthouse and enjoy 
more of Rome and Italy.

We had a couple of times when Uber didn't 
show and we got charged, but as soon as I got 
home I disputed the charge and they were taken 
off my account.  It was perfect as their vans were
perfect for a large group and the price was set.

Here we are gathered at the train station to 
go to the Rome Airport and then on to Paris.

We flew Alitalia and it was only about 150 Euros 
round trip from London to Rome and Rome to Paris, 
but they only allow a 17 pound carry on.  I had
mine pre-packed and had a family meeting and 
showed them how much they could fit in a
carry on.  They all did it!!!

They charge 25 Euros if you pay for your checked luggage 
in advance and 45 Euros if you pay at the airport. Be 
sure to do this at home as the airline's system
wouldn't accept our payments 
on our computer while abroad.

Of course we didn't know this ahead of time,
but with everyone just having one rolling
carry on, we were able to pay for only 
one checked bag.

In our next edition we are off to 
Disneyland Paris - I tried to make this
trip something that the kids would love and not be 
bored with, and something that the kid in all of us 
would enjoy!


Chocolat - French for Chocolate. I adored chocolate from a young age when I had to sneak in the cupboard to find where my mother had hidden the Nestle's Chocolate Chips. Having read about the famous chocolat shoppes in Paris, when I finally got there I was determined to try a chocolate from every Paris shoppe. I invite you to share my adventures in creating, in travel, and in life.


  1. Wonderful Jackie. You did your homework and planned very well. I can't image getting that many people off for events at the same time but you did it!
    Wonderful trip. We went to Rome in 2013. I actually looked at my pictures last night.

  2. Thank You for Sharing your wonderful trip and Pics and Memories!! ❤❤ Love Living Vicariously through Jackie!!

  3. WOW = what an adventure!! I love seeing all of your pics and they brought back sweet memories of our trip a few years back! Rome is lovely and the architecture is stunning!. Your church is a gorgeous building and how lucky you were to be able to attend a mass there! It is certainly fun traveling along with you!!

  4. What an amazing trip for the family. So many lovely places to take in the beauty. Rome must be spectacular. I am enjoying the photos, like I was there. The family is always remember these precious memories. You are so great at organizing. The temple is gorgeous. So nice you got to attend church. A memorable trip. Thanks for sharing with us.
    aqua marine

  5. Wow, Jackie you did an amazing job of planning your trip. You did all the touristy must sees and enjoyed off the beaten path adventures. I really enjoyed seeing all of your family (what memories you've made) and seeing some favorites from our adventures there. I love the Airbnb you found, I may try that next time we go to Rome. Fabulous trip and post!!!!

  6. Thank you for the beautiful trip to Rome Jackie, and your airbnb, wowza! So affordable and so luxurious! You've spoilted everyone now!! I love that you use your TT pouch, I use mine for cords and chargers too! How incredibly special to share this trip with your family, the church is spectacular, and I could definitely live on pizza and gelato!


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