ITALY: Solo trip to Rome – My 3rd visit to Bel Paese (Day 1)

The corona pandemic was easing down in June, so I booked a solo trip to Italy to visit my youngest aunt and to once again, conquer my fear of flying. I also wanted to travel alone, like I used to before getting married. I don’t really prefer it now, but it’s nice to be out of my comfort zone (aka with my husband) once in a while. The first time I visited Rome and the Vatican was in 2013, with two of my sisters. Then, northern Italy was in our Interrail itinerary in 2018. This year, the plan was Rome, the Vatican, and the small state of San Marino.

Since it was a solo trip after so many years, I wanted things to go smoothly. People were also crowding the airports when covid-19 restrictions were lifted up in Norway, and I wanted to escape some of those stressful situations in the media. So, I booked a SAS Plus Smart seat – with entrance to the Lounge, Fast Track, and snacks and meal included. It’s a 3-hour (more or less) flight from Oslo to Rome, and thank goodness, it was a smooth one. I enjoyed it so much, I didn’t even have to take an antihistamine for the fright.

Here’s how the SAS Lounge in Oslo Gardermoen Airport look like:

Taking off:

The food on the plane was also okay – I particularly liked the creamy dressing. And there was a complimentary chocolate box for dessert. What’s more? Free wifi. I remember chatting with my family during the trip.

I usually listen to podcasts during flights or watch movies on Netflix or Disney Plus, and that’s exactly what I did then. Before I knew it, we were entering Italy’s airspace. I thought I also caught a glimpse of San Marino in the eastern side.. Or was it just my imagination? Here are some amazing views of Italy from the plane:

Face masks were no longer required on planes at that time (neither in Norway), but it was still enforced in Italy, specifically in public transports and inside museums. And it should be surgical masks. The train to Rome was jam-packed, and I was sweating like a pig. You could really feel the difference in temperature.

Anyway, I made it to Hotel Serena, located in the city center, right by Roma Termini train station. It accommodated me for the first 4 days of my 1-week journey. The hotel was okay, but the elevator was small and ancient, and worked only on occasions, and the receptionist too friendly. He even taught me some Italian phrases.

I got to nap for a few hours in the afternoon, then, I met with my aunt in the evening for a stroll and some dinner on one of the streets of Rome.

The food was too salty for my taste, but the pasta’s texture was good.

I had planned to leave very early the next day to avoid the crowd, well, to sightsee and visit the famous attractions I also saw for the first time in 2013. I also wanted to go the the fountain to have a new wish. More about that in the next entry. 🙂 Off to work for now! #spreadloveandpositivevibes



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