Hello, my dear friends! Hope you had a great Independence Day weekend. We have been in this perpetual weekend mood (not necessary relaxing, haha) since we were traveling, finally today, the kids started their summer camps. I began to go through the pictures and short videos I took, starting this post, I will share with you our Italian travel stories, hope some can be useful for your trip planning.
Besides plane tickets, the first thing we booked are places to stay. During our 20-day trip, we stayed in five different places including big cities like Rome and Florence, and a small seaside town near Genova. The No. 1 criteria for us when it comes to accommodation, besides safety and cleans (those are given), is enough room. Out pass trips staying in hotel rooms taught us even a suite could feel too small sometimes with two active boys and two parents who wanted to work a bit. Airbnb became our default because we usually get a lot more square feet per dollar spent.
If you think booking a hotel is daunting, Airbnb can be quite overwhelming with multiple times more possibilities. We use a few hard rules to narrow down our options:
1. dates needed
3. 2+ rooms with double beds, 2 bath;
4. safe & convenient neighborhood
Both husband and I work everyday while we are on the road, we also make sure the place has wi-fi and for longer trips, laundry facility. When the searching results show, I check the host with the most reviews first, going through all the pictures to see if the place is nice and clean, how convenient it is for tourists.
I can’t stress it enough on convenience: how easy it is to get to public transportation, to grocery store, to ATM, etc. It was wonderful being able to step outside of front door and walk to everything. The place we stayed in Rome was on a very lively street lined with good restaurants and one of the best gelaterria next to the famous Piazza Navona. Besides further attractions like the Colosseum and Vatican City, we walked everywhere. Even though the place itself had no street view, we throughly enjoyed our stay because we spent great evenings hanging out on Piazza Navona where the boys ran around while hubs and I enjoyed the cool air and people-watching.
Below is a visual tour of our Rome Airbnb, it was taken with my phone right before we left so please excuse the quality but I hope you get the idea. Our host is an architect, we adore all the fine touches he puts in this place with antique furnitures and paintings. If you end up booking his place, please say “hi” to him for me.
Another quality of Airbnb places after convenience we look for, is view. A pleasant view outside the window really helps relaxation after a whole day bustling, even for tourists. Our third stop in Italy was a bit huff to get to but the gorgeous ocean view totally made up for it. It was a perfect stop for us to take a break before heading into another major city.
The apartment was literally next to the beach and this beautiful ocean view. Villagers hang out here all day long.
night view of the marina is just as magical
Enjoying a cup of iced coffee in the morning
The apartment is very well decorated with the perfect mix of modern and classic, it is as pleasant as the outside view. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any videos to show you except this one pic I took with my cell phone in the living room.
View at sunset from the living room
We splurged a little in Florence by booking a penthouse-like apartment with a great view of the duomo (you can see the entire space in the visual tour below). It is also very convenient to all the key attractions. Even though the place is a bit overkill for a family of four, towards the end of our long trip, the space was necessary and comforting. ;D
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you will find this post helpful, please let me know your thoughts and suggestions on whether I should write more posts like this. See you in my next post!
Zara striped tunic & pants;
Zara white eyelet sundress;
Zara cashmere tank top similar on sale;
R13 denim shorts <similar, on sale>;
Kayu grass tote <pink , black>;
Lack of Color boater hat;
Miu Miu sungalsses;