Juliana Alvarez

Traveling from Dallas, Texas to Florence, Italy

The journey to Florence was an experience in itself. When arriving at the airport with my two travel buddies, we were ecstatic about the adventures to come. We check in our luggage, of course mine is overweight and I am forced to rearrange, and head through security. Security went smoothly and we anxiously awaited our flight by wandering around the DFW airport and eating overpriced airport food. Our flight was a ten and a half hour direct flight to Rome. The flight itself was the most uncomfortable hours of my life (I was only able to sleep an hour), but it turned out to be so worth it. We landed in Rome, and began our second part of the journey, two train rides to get to Florence. I have never experienced an easier and faster customs then at the Rome Airport. Similarly, boarding our first train brought no issues, especially since we gave ourselves plenty of time in between our flight and train. The second train was not such an easy experience. After boarding our second train, we quickly found that the floor level luggage bins were filled and we would have to lift our 48 lbs suitcase into the overhead compartment. After blocking the whole aisle for many minutes and wondering back and forth, a man was kind enough to lift them for us. All the struggles on the train did not seem so bad after we began seeing the beautiful views of the Tuscan country side.

Arriving in Florence

After checking into our hotel, we immediately begin walking the city to fight the jet lag. After a few turns down random streets, we find ourselves in front of the huge and gorgeous Duomo. At this moment, the shock set in that we were on our own in Italy. Everywhere you look in Florence, there are gorgeous sights, interesting history, and amazing things to eat. For a quick and affordable bite, we often indulged in a fresh pizza or a panino filled with regional specialties like porchetta or finocchiona salami. The thing I have loved most about Florence is how every area has something that is new and exciting. My favorite sight so far has been the iconic Ponte Vecchio, a bridge lined with charming jewelry shops that stretches across the Arno River. The view from the bridge is simply magical.

I can’t wait to see what else Florence holds for us.