Cat Cafe in Paris

PURRfect afternoon at the cat cafe in Paris |

For those of you who are regular readers of my blog, you know I’m a cat Mom. My little guy is a huge part of my life. I have a weakness for animals … I just love them! When I heard Paris had a cat cafe, it immediately made my list of top things to do.

The cafe is home to 12 cats. All of them were rescue adoptions. The cafe and the staff provide a safe environment for the furry felines, along with fresh food and water and lots of attention.

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Celebrating Bastille Day in Paris with a Parade

Bastille Day in Paris | |

Bastille Day is a national holiday celebrated in France every year on July 14th.

In France the celebration is commonly known as Fête de la Fédération.  The first Fête de la Fédération was held on July 14, 1790, and was a celebration to commemorate the first anniversary of the Storming of the Bastille (a prison fortress the people of Paris stormed to gain ammunition and gunpowder to defend themselves against the royal army) and the unity of the French Nation during the French Revolution.

The Bastille Day Military Parade has been held on July 14th each year in Paris since 1880. The parade passes down the Champs-Élysées from the Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde.

It’s really something to see, and I’m happy I was lucky enough to enjoy the celebrations of Bastille Day in Paris.

Check out a short video and photos of the parade below.

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Holy Mass with Pope Francis

Holy Mass with Pope Francis in Rome |

This past Sunday I had the pleasure of attending Holy Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica and got to hear Pope Francis speak.  It was really a neat experience!  Although I’m not Catholic, I still appreciated and enjoyed the opportunity to be there.  

I also had the pleasure to watch a group of sisters see St. Peter’s in person for the first time.  They lit up like a group of little kids on Christmas morning.  Seeing their reactions made me appreciate my surroundings even more.  

Below are several more photos taken during Holy Mass.  


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Biking ~ Down by the River in Rome

I’ve been biking pretty regularly lately, and I’ve been loving it!  I work from home, so the morning bike rides help to break my day up and provide some extra exercise.  I live in Trastevere, so the Tiber River is near for me.  I usually always ride down next to the river.  There’s no street traffic, only other bikers, walkers and runners.  It’s so lovely and peaceful being near to the water.  Sometimes I almost forget there is a bustling city going on just above me.   

In addition to the exercise, the rides have been great for me to gather my thoughts.  I’m in the process of working on several upcoming projects, and it’s nice to be able to think creatively in an open environment and not always at a desk in front of a computer. 

I like to ride by Castle Sant’ Angelo and the Bridge of Angels.  I never cease to feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude that I am able to be in this environment.  I am always in awe as I approach and ride by the ancient castle that Emperor Hadrian had commissioned 2,000 years ago.  The same feelings evoke as I admire Bernini’s angel sculptures along the bridge.  The things that have happened here and the phenomenal history that surrounds this area just about blows my mind some days.  

You can’t really tell it from the photo below, but the water under this bridge always seems to sparkle like diamonds with the way the morning sunlight hits.  Always a treat!

I also get to do quite a bit of bird watching along my rides.  It’s great being able to enjoy and appreciate the little things.  

It’s been a while now, but we came across this guy playing the saxophone one day during a ride.  It was so beautiful, and felt like he was there to play just for us.  It’s a memory I don’t think I’ll forget anytime soon.  

I’ve also been riding in the opposite direction along the river, toward Testaccio.  This part of the river is not so manicured and is a bit more rustic, but it’s still so lovely.  The trees along the bank provide extra shade, and a different feel along the ride.  

Nature and ancient structures … the best of both worlds, and an incredible start to the day!

Rainbow MagicLand ~ Rome’s Amusement Park

Did you know Rome has an amusement park?  Most people don’t.  The majority of visitors come to Rome to visit the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain and Vatican Museums, and an amusement park really isn’t on their list of things to do.  If you have kids, this is a great place for you to think about visiting though.  

Rainbow MagicLand is the name of the amusement park, and it’s actually located on the outskirts of Rome in a town called Valmontone.  To get there you can drive, take a train from Termini or go by bus.  You can see Rainbow MagicLand’s website for the different ways to arrive.  

As soon as you enter the park, everything is done on a grand scale.  The park makes you feel like you’re stepping into an ancient era.  

You’ll also feel the magic with the layout of the park … it’s really stunning.

The park has plenty of rides for those seeking adventure.  Rainbow MagicLand offers several different roller coaster rides.  

They also have an area for the younger children to play and ride rides.  It’s really colorful and fun.  

The park also has a carousel, which I couldn’t resist and had to ride.

If you need a break from enjoying the rides and exploring the park, you can catch a show at the theater.  The show was filled with singing, dancing and beautiful costumes, along with a few tricks.  It was entertaining for both adults and children.

The park is primarily open during the summer months.  You still have September to make a visit to Rainbow MagicLand, then it will mostly be open on the weekends during the winter/school months.  You can visit Rainbow MagicLand’s website for opening times. 

What do you think about Rome’s amusement park?  Would you like to visit, or have you visited?  If you visited, what was your favorite thing at Rainbow Magicland?

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