Well, as caio predicted, I'm making a "back from Rome" thread. I've actually been back for several weeks, but I am extremely slow.

I won't give a boring recap of the trip; I will just say two things:

First, there is no food in the world that's better than Roman gelato. There may be some foods as good as gelato in Rome, but there is not -- cannot possibly be -- anything better.

Also, it was really nice to spend a few days on a different continent. Living in the USA, it's easy to think that we're the center of the world. I never believed it, but it was awesome to see firsthand that it's not true. We're all just citizens of the world. Our success or our failure on this planet lies together, not apart. I hope we can figure that out eventually.

Okay, now on to the stuff people really care about: the photos, and the giveaways!

Photos are here. (Unfortunately they are in random order. I do plan to organize them and add descriptions eventually... but don't hold your breath).

Giveaways start here and end on March 19th, Level 1.

5 days ago

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Very nice photos, ty for the giveaways as well :)

5 days ago
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thank you mate :) nice places <3

5 days ago
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Nice pictures, looks like the weather was good too. :) Bump and thanks! :)

5 days ago
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So tall and grand

5 days ago
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...Buongiorno!

belle foto, alcune molto molto belle (panorama del Colosseo).

really wasn't expecting this: "Our success or our failure on this planet lies together, not apart"
huge

...thanks mate!

5 days ago
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nice pictures! thanks a lot for chooooo chooooo!

5 days ago
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Wonderful!love the 8th one

5 days ago
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Nice pics

5 days ago
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Nice pics, and thank you for the GA.

5 days ago
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Oh damn, those are great photos. The Trevi fountain is a beautiful thing.

5 days ago
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It must be wonderful. Nice pics :)
I went Rome just once when I was a student. Almost 20 years ago. I wanna go there again with my kids.

5 days ago
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Thanks for the photos and giveaways!

5 days ago
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bump

5 days ago
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Glad you liked my beloved Rome.
I was forced to leave the city for my hometown 2 weeks ago...
I think I will never recover.

5 days ago
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Nice photos! I would love to visit Rome one day.

5 days ago
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Very cool! Thanks for sharing the pictures, hope you had as wonderful a time as it looks. :) Definitely need to go myself one day!

5 days ago
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Glad you liked it in Europe, for me Rome is a city for one time - sure, architecture is nice and you get to see some of the most iconic world monuments like Colosseum, but there are many many much better locations in Italy than Rome itself. Rome lacks pure real italian feeling - it's too metropolitan, too busy, too crowded, too fast, too expensive - if you want a taste of real Italy visit for example Tuscany, I also love italian mountains and lakes in the north, Apulia is beautiful, cheap and still mostly undiscovered, there's also Sicily, which is in league of it's own (yet Sicily itself is also very different from actual italian feeling ;p). Oh and best gelato is not in Rome but in Milan ;p

5 days ago
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too fast

are you reeeally talking about the same Rome i'm thinking of? :P

5 days ago
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yes, compare Rome with any other italian city ;p Rome is not crazy-fast like some western or Asian cities, but it feels like average western city instead, while Italy beside Rome is much slower, more relaxed, easygoing etc. I'm not saying Rome itself is too fast, I'm saying it's too fast compared with rest of Italy :) And so far I visited 10 different regions of Italy, 13 major cities, and out of all of them Rome remains my least favoritue one ;p

5 days ago*
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View attached image.
5 days ago
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Also one of the reasons ;P I found Vatican to be absolutelly overhyped and not really worth it ;p

5 days ago
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View attached image.
5 days ago
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it indeed is! xD (the first time I went there, they left out my father due to his short pants if I remember well xD)
it's great but there are definitely tons of other cities and areas, less overcrowded and yet extremely beautiful to see =)

5 days ago
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definitely! my girlfriend's from Sicily and it could be visited as an independent nation, with all the things they have down there =P
thanks to you too for all your impressions and on the other side, having been many times to Poland and (Western) Ukraine it's been years that I promote those two nations to everyone here in Italy, too few Italians travel there but some Polish towns and the people there are so amazing that we can't even imagine! My friends/family friends/co-workers were at Zamość and Lwów, I can't wait every year to get back there.. Italians are too busy to go to London or Paris, I keep on recommending them Poland and Ukraine =P

5 days ago
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even people in Sicily behave different than in mainland Italy ;p I find their attitude and way of being much closer to for example spanish people than to italians ;p

Actually I havent been to most of Eastern Poland, especially cities, never been to Zamość, from eastern polish cities I only visited Rzeszów, and Giżycko, but mostly I travelled outside of cities - like travelling Bieszczady Mountains (south-eastern corner of PL) or sailing on Mazury lakes (north-eastern corner), but on Ukraine I can agree with you - it's awesome, and with a lot of lowcost airlines flying there in last few years it became one of the cheapest destinations for short citybreak vacations :) Besides Lwów I recommend Kijów (Kiyv) for great few-days trip and Odessa if you want awesome summer spot with warm sea and unbeliveably low prices (I'd say 50-75% lower than in Italy for example) - Odessa is not so easilly reachable by plane, but you can get cheap flight to Kijów and from there very cheap train to Odessa (there are around 8-10 trains per day).

5 days ago
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yeah, that's definitely the point!! they're like a mixture of arabs/berbers, catalans, portuguese.. and well, I'm never joking when I say that when I go to Sicily (Palermo most of the times) I feel it extremely difficult to understand how they speak, I have it hard to get all the different accents, lots of different words and most of all a huge dialect inflection in everything =P so to me, as a northern italian, it's difficult even to have a long talk with my girlfriend's relatives.. xD we're very different! and of course they all support sicilian autonomy with an identity of their own, and it's great since it's so beautiful that it could be an independent nation, with all their culture and history.. one should definitely not stop to Rome or Venice, the whole Italy needs to be visited! Tuscany, Apulia, Sardinia, the Alpine regions.. =)

and Poland is huge, just like Italy - this means as I was saying that it's been literally 10+ years that I don't visit Calabria or Apulia, they're too far from Northern Italy.. we don't even have fast trains, just for the north and from Naples northwards (I once took a regular train Naples-Palermo through the Sicilian sea strait - 14 hours xD).. thanks a lot for the tips =)
in Western Ukraine they all know Polish and it's very similar to Ukrainian, so I speak a mix between the two (I can't read Cyrillic though!!) and everyone understands me =P I must definitely see Odessa!! I'm used to heavy snowfalls around Lwów (the people we know live in Sławsko, and it looks always like it's Alpine winter there ahah) so I'd love to see the coast and of course to visit the whole North of Poland, I know only the South.. mainly Lublin of course, Krakow.. but I've never been to Gdansk for instance!

thanks again for the tips, I love traveling and I re-started traveling after many years of stop.. and I love Europe too =)

5 days ago
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no problem, always happy to give tips, if you need any in future poke me and I will gladly help you :)

I also re-started travelling around 4-5 years ago, but now it's very very different from the way I used to travel before. When I was in highschool and at university I travelled a lot, but in a total hippie-backpacker style - I'd mostly hitchhike all around Poland and later on when I was adult around Europe, almost without any money, so I'd sleep under clear sky, or find people who would take me in, or just sleep in cheapest hostels possible if weather was too bad, I wasn't visiting any paid atractions, only venturing cities by foot, drinking cheap beer on the beach, on the hill or in the park, eating cheapest food bought in market (or sometimes simply stealing fresh vegetables from farmer's field, or fresh fruits from trees, picking up wild mushrooms in forests etc xP), hiking mountains with a tent on my back etc. My trips were not planed at all (enough said I once wanted to hitchhike to Berlin for music festival, ended up spending a week in Morocco xD). Nowadays it's polar opposite - I spend a lot of time researching and planning out trips, I'm like one-man-travel-agency, find all atractions, plan routes, book tickets in advance, decide on car rental or public transport beforehand etc, our trips are very intensive, we often visit a lot more than we would with any guided tour, and these last 4 years we have travelled a lot, and I mean really a lot, so much that it's basically consuming all our savings (for example I havent upgraded my PC in like 8 years, I havent bought a new car after trashed last one etc - all because we are spending all money on travels ;p). For example from December last year to May this year, so in half a year we will be on 8 trips total, at the turn of November and December we went to Palermo for short citybreak to celebrate my birthday, in December we went for 2 days to Dresden for Xmas market, January we spent 6 days on Mallorca, February we went to Prague for 3 days for our anniversary, next week we're going to Budapest with group of friends, Easter we will spend driving around Montenegro on one-week-long roadtrip in a rented car, beggining of May we are first going to convention in Poznań, but then we're going to Czech mountains and to visit Adrspach and Teplice Rock Cities, then at end of May fiancee goes on delegation to Tallin, but she will stay 2 days longer for weekend and I will fly over to her and we will use it as an opportunity for another short citybreak ;p

5 days ago
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visit Tuscany

That is definitely on my list, especially because my father's family is from somewhere in Tuscany. But I've been informed by my world-traveler girlfriend that we can't visit the same country back-to-back, we have to visit somewhere else before we come back to Italy.

best gelato is not in Rome but in Milan

Well, I clearly need to visit Milan!

5 days ago
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I agree with your girlfriend, there's too many wonderful places in the world to go in the same direction over and over again, but there's a way around it ;p Make a multi-stop trip, if you spend 5 days in let's say Spain next time and then fly to Tuscany it will no longer count as back-to-back ;p

4 days ago
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nice photos

5 days ago
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Nice photos!

5 days ago
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Wonderful photos!
Thank you for gibs!

5 days ago
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What happend to the guy with scar on his head ?

5 days ago
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Great photos! The panorama of the Colosseum is cool. Hope you enjoyed your trip!

5 days ago
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He went roaming in Rome, but now he's home. Welcome back, buddy.

5 days ago
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They just don't make buildings with passion anymore :(
ps Welcome back :)

5 days ago
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I feel its more or less how the world society is. Everyone is very money-centric looking to best another for being the biggest, tallest buildings, more shiny than actually looking to beautify a building which more expensive and time consuming. Time changed and what the owners what are cost efficiency and brag. There's isnt just such a system and resources like an emperor would order the building of a Colosseum or palace. :)

5 days ago
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Did it? Wasn't part of Rome showing off how powerful they were?

In 1000 years time people might be looking back at this time and saying people actually cared for skylines. :P

5 days ago
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Just personal opinion, I just feel a lack of craftsmanship/workmanship. There are tall structures in the past, The Colossus, Pyramids, Towers, ancient people trying to reach the sky. Perhaps its the invention of machinery that since machines aren't available in the past, they would craft everything rather than finding the craftsmanship precious. Now we are exploring to build using 3D printings, which I feel really generic.

Lack of craftsmanship in daily life too, lessor tailors, shoe makers, blacksmiths, etc. 1000yrs later with the advancement of science and technology, indeed we would not be just looking from the ground up but instead looking down from space. We would be looking at traveling to other planets rather than building huge buildings. All these will become relics. XD

5 days ago
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What a breathtaking city Rome is!
(and country in general)

We're all just citizens of the world. Our success or our failure on this planet lies together, not apart. I hope we can figure that out eventually.

Very very true. As Mark Twain said “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness".
All the kids (and older) should experience life in another country for a few weeks, if not only to see their little corner of the world is not the center of the universe, but also to realize there is more than unites us than there is that divides us

Welcome back, Canis

5 days ago
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Well said! :D

5 days ago
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All the kids (and older) should experience life in another country for a few weeks, if not only to see their little corner of the world is not the center of the universe, but also to realize there is more than unites us than there is that divides us

+100000000000000000000000000000000000

This is exactly what I said to a friend when I got back.

5 days ago
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