27 Days in Europe – Journeying the International Route…Italy Here We Come!

Needless to say we had a blessed 3 day touring of one of Europe’s most fashion forward and avant-garde cities, Paris. Now it’s time to pack our bags and head out to a city where the Renaissance movement thrived. You guessed it, Florence, Italy.

We’re traveling European style with first class seats on France’s SNF train. The total travel time of 12 hours! (With a pit stop transfer in Milan, Italy.) It does make your mind boggle on the amount of sitting we had to do, crossing countries. But it was a very pleasant experience overall, mostly due to the fact that our seats had leg room and we dozed off 90% of the time. We found it funny that the train staff miraculously changed from French to Italian right between borders. We wondered where the French staff was hiding. Maybe the Italians stuffed them in the closet? Languages suddenly switched and we found ourselves having to quickly skim our Italian dictionaries. Saying “Grazie” instead of “Merci” Luckily nowadays the universal language is English. We traveled from 7 AM – 7 PM and we were pretty tired by the end of our leg. Dropped in our amazing hostel and plopped on the bed. Next day is where the real fun begins!

How were two broke youngsters able to get their hands on first class seats you may ask? Well it was all thanks to this drawing and Eurail.com’s travel contest on Facebook, which enable me to win two first class train tickets of unlimited train travel for 15 days. I’m forever grateful to Eurail. I was pretty shocked that I even won something at all, but it was one of those "meant to be" moments. The topic post of that particular contest was “Which European Nationality Should You Have and Why?” There were all sorts of crazy answers, mines wasn’t any different saved my drawing which was the only leg up I had, using art to my advantage. I wanted to be an Italian Renaissance artist...a particular fantasy of mines, Hehe. There were awesome posts of people making their own youtube videos even. 5 of us were chosen and as they say the most eye-catching and original posts won. ^_^

FYI: If you’re ever heading off to Europe you can try your luck at winning Eurail passes by entering in their contest here: Eurail Facebook under discussions (Contest theme change monthly)

Another FYI: We stayed at this amazing hostel in Florence, Italy that I highly recommend to any traveler: Hostel Archi Rossi
(Don’t let the movie “Hostel” scare you. Hostels are a great budget alternative to more expensive hotel chains, a lot of the times even better! They’ve got friendly staff, free breakfast, free internet, free city tour everyday, and a private room at half the price from a standard hotel in Europe. Their walls are artfully decorated with murals. It’s catered mostly to backpackers, but family friendly as well. 5 minutes walk away from the city’s train station. With its price, I rate it 5 stars!)

Click on the “30 Days in Europe” link to follow our travels around Europe.

Europe Photos are free to take as stock images. Crediting is appreciated!


  Beholden-To-Nature (Kenna)

April 1, 2009 at 9:15 PM

Thank you... VERY much!

And holy cow! Look at you go-go-going! That's AMAZING that you won the eurail tix-- good for you! I think those parental rules are paying off!

I traveled by Eurail in college when I did the semester in Florence-- miss train travel. And that was such a funny reminder-- the "staff switch" at the border! You were hilarious in your description of it! :)

Sending wishes for more amazing sights and inspiring people in your journey!


April 2, 2009 at 5:23 PM

I want to go!!


April 5, 2009 at 10:41 AM

Amazing Drawing!!! No wonder you won! ;o)