In just over a month I’ll be hopping on a plane with my brother and heading over to somewhere I have ALWAYS wanted to explore: Rome. I’ve been lucky enough to go on two city breaks in the last year- Dublin and Paris. From planning and then going on these trips I’ve learnt a lot about what effective planning might need to involve. Although I’m sure I’ll come back from Rome claiming “I should have done this” and “I should have done that,” here are some of the sources I rely on to plan for a city break and, thus, hopefully have as much ground covered in terms of admin and activities.
Instagram is the first place I go. I type in the place I am to go and in a matter of seconds I have so many accounts to choose from. Whether it’s an Instagram account of one person’s experiences or an Instagram that collects images of the place I am to go, Instagram accounts are SUPER helpful. As pictured above, I followed topromephoto on Instagram so I have a frequent reminder of all of the popular destinations I can visit. Before going to Dublin I followed dublinbynight and before Paris, I followed paris and parisinfourmonths. It is through Instagram where I learn about which bits of tourism I fancy checking out and spots I want to find for pretty views and photos.
Blogs are where I read about a place’s hidden and lesser known gems. I love reading about bloggers’ adventures, reading about places they simply stumbled on or heard about from a friend of a friend. It’s a blogger’s honesty that helps out with the admin side of things- how to save money; how to prepare for transport abroad; where to avoid etc. A brilliant blog about all things Rome (and a sprinkle of other parts of Italy) is An American in Rome. There is no better way to get excited than to read about someone else’s adventures. I will definitely be using this blog and any other blogs I find in the mean time to work out where the best gelato really is!
Lonely Planet provides for excellent pre-reading. Lonely Planet is a travel guide book publisher I heard about when my brother bought me this (as well as the other book pictured above) when telling me I was to be heading to Rome with him this year. It is packed with all that there is to do, prices and useful tips. As well as blogs, I use this book to importantly work out how to travel cheaply and efficiently. It’s a great foundation to start with and, I expect, carry with you in your backpack when adventuring.
Culture-specific reading like the Rome cookbook pictured above are brilliant sources. Being a foodie, one of the things I first google is all of the food that is popular and adored in the place I am visiting. I plan on trying out a few of the recipes before a leave next month, to get myself and my tastebuds even more excited. Simply flicking through this book gets me in the know about what I should be looking for on menus in order to experience a super authentic Italian meal. Another brilliant book is Taste by Laura Rowe because it provides lots of information about food generally. Particularly important for my Rome trip, it talks about all of the types of pasta!
YouTube was one of my go-to sources every morning in the run up to going to Paris. THIS vlog by Alex Centomo was a video that got me particularly excited to be in the beautiful city. As soon as my exams are over I plan on binge watching Rome vlogs to increase my excitement even more.
~ Kat ~