Italy. One of the most fascinating countries I have ever traveled too. We spent days meandering the streets of Rome and Venice, soaking in the culture of two unbelievably unique cities.
Rome is just incredible, I’d head back in a heartbeat. There is so much history and each day we learnt and discovered so much. From the dungeons of the Colosseum to the sweeping views from Palatine Hill, Rome has secured its place as one of my favourite cities in the world.
In a country where pizza and pasta are the traditional dishes I had concerns that healthy meals may be a little tricky to come by. I was however pleasantly surprised. Sure it’s not like Sydney where there is a health focused cafe on every street corner but we made a few great discoveries and also realised that it’s possible to make healthy choice from the menu of an authentic Italian trattoria.
My favourite place and one that was on my list to visit was Ginger. The space is beautiful. We sat street side to people watch (as you do in Rome). It’s the perfect healthy haven that serves an array of great clean meals. Head here is you are craving a salad, homemade pumpkin soup or superfood smoothies . If you want to stick to the Italian cuisine then you can choose options like homemade Italian pasta with grassfed beef ragout. Most of their ingredients are organic and sourced locally. If you find yourself in Rome this is a must try!
We mostly ate at traditional Italian restaurants where we feasted on chicken with roasted peppers, lamb chops or steamed sea bass or the like. Naturally you can’t visit Italy and not eat pizza. When done well it’s a whole new food experience, the crust is so thin and the homemade tomato sauce so sweet. I’m not entirely sure how I will go back to eating my homemade pizza after tasting the real deal. Many places have an English menu and many also offer gluten free pizza bases if needed.
Our meanderings took us to farmers markets where locals buy not only their fruit and vegetables but an abundance of beautiful spices, olive oil and limoncello (an Italian digestif liqueur). They really are a country that is immensely proud of their food and wine.
We also came across a few little hidden gems, which are often the best finds. So unexpected, tucked away in the back cobblestone streets. Purem in Venice had been open only a week. A juice and smoothie bar, which if you have been to Venice you will know is very rare! Great spot to load up on your daily dose of veggies.
Slow-Market Bio in Rome is a cute little cafe and marketplace. Their menu is small but everything looked good including their freshly squeezed juices & healthy treats. A great place to stock up on healthy travel snacks, herbal teas and a range of other goodies.
What about exercise? Aside from walking at least 8 hours a day we did manage to get ourselves to a gym once or twice. We did a session at Omega Fitness which was close to our hotel but other great options would be Lungotevere Fitness, Trastevere Fitness and Gym Club Roma.
Now its time to say farewell to our European adventure and get our butts back to Sydney. Kind of excited about seeing a little sunshine!
Are you heading to Europe? Make sure you check out some of the other health & wellbeing listings on our website.
If you have any suggestions of places you think we need to list on wellbeing worldwide send us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org