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Rome Pictures – Photo Essay

Our favourite Rome Pictures from our recent trip. An iconic city to photograph and so easy to do as well.



Colisseum Pictures, Rome Pictures, Colosseum Panorama, Colosseum Pictures

Rome has quickly raced into my top 3 favourite cities to photograph. Around ever corner is another exquisite structure that seems to have been crafted from a single block of genius.

Each is a masterpiece in its own right. And if any single one of these buildings, statues or monuments were located in any other city in the world then people would flock to that city for that one structure. Amazingly Rome has some how managed to cram all of these handcrafted icons within walking distance of one another.

I wanted to capture a few of my favourites in such a way that I would do them justice. Hopefully I succeeded. I present…

Rome in Monochrome

Ancient Roman Colosseum

Colisseum Pictures, Rome Pictures

Easily the most famous building in Rome and by far my favourite. Adela got pretty sick of me shooting the Roman Colosseum under every lighting condition from every angle.

Fontana del Tritone

Rome Pictures

We were walking home one afternoon and came across this Piazza with this wonderful statue in the middle. No idea who he is but it is brilliant.

Arco di Tito in the Roman Forum

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos, Roman Forum Photos

We went to the Roman Forum to pick up our Ancient Roman Colosseum tickets the day before. We ended up spending over 3 hours wandering the ruins. Only left because we were starving!

Roman Bicycle

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos, Rome Street Photos

Even every day objects seem to be placed in such a way that make this city different to so many others we have been to.

Piazza del Popolo

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos

Located in the heart of the Baroque district.

Unknown Soldier Tomb

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos

One of the best monuments I have ever seen. Fantastic panoramas from the rooftop as well.

St Peter’s Basilica

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos, St Peters Basilica Photos

Crowded with tourists but still worthy of a visit.

Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain Pictures, Rome Pictures, Rome Photos

Probably the best fountain we have ever laid eyes upon. Although we did see it’s twin in Las Vegas!

Vatican Museum

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos, Vatican Photos

I snapped off this shot really quickly above the heads of the tourist hordes and turns out it is one of my favourites.

Foro di Augusto

Rome Pictures, Rome Photos

Buildings like this are spread throughout Rome. Incredible.

What do you think? Do you like the black and white photos or prefer colour?

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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  1. Laurence

    June 18, 2012 at 11:10 AM

    Love the use of black and white with these shots, nice work 😀

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:47 AM

      Was a bit of an experiment but seems to have paid off! 🙂

  2. Kelly

    June 18, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    Great shots! It makes me very excited to visit! Usually I take all my shots in colour but I actually really like black and white. They give a really nice feeling.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:51 AM

      Cheers Kelly. Seemed to fit the ancient city a little bit more than colour. Probably should have done colour and black/white side by side 🙂

  3. Ayngelina

    June 18, 2012 at 6:08 PM

    I love black and white photos, they strip away unneeded detail especially when looking at architecture.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:54 AM

      Totally agree Ayngelina! Just suited Rome down to the ground.

  4. The Rowdy Chowgirl

    June 18, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    I love the black and white! These pictures are all about the details and lines, and I think the black and white really enhances that. Nice!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:56 AM

      Thanks! Rome just made it really easy to create these images. All I had to do was click the button haha.

  5. Christina

    June 18, 2012 at 10:47 PM

    I like your Arco di Tito and Roman bicycle photos best. I love B&W photography, and I think to capture a certain atmosphere I would prefer it over colour. Love your black and white photo tour of Rome!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:57 AM

      I was stoked to come across that bike. And actually decided to start photographing doors yesterday as there are so many cool ones around Italy. Random but hopefully creates a cool album!

  6. Karen @ Trans-Americas Journey

    June 19, 2012 at 4:33 AM

    You’re so right that ordinary objects become extraordinary in Rome. And the extraordinary object? Mind blowing!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:58 AM

      Cheers Karen. That bike was just down a random alley so were really stoked when we stumbled across it 🙂

  7. Turtle

    June 19, 2012 at 6:01 AM

    I find it really hard to get points of difference with all the landmarks in Italy. You’ve done a great job here, though!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 6:59 AM

      Thanks Michael. Thought I might have overdone it with all the b&w but seems to have worked 🙂

  8. Shanna Schultz

    June 19, 2012 at 6:51 AM

    I didn’t know that you could go to the top of the Unknown Soldiers Monument! We will give that a go next time, thanks for the amazing photos!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 23, 2012 at 7:00 AM

      Cost 7 euros to get to the top. Was cool up there but we only sent myself up while Adela stayed at the bottom. She was happy enough checking out the photos afterwards haha.

  9. T.W. Anderson @ Marginal Boundaries

    June 23, 2012 at 7:48 PM

    Rome is such an awesome place, and seeing it in monochrome is a different spin on an old classic. I haven’t been there since 2009, but I’d love to make it next year for another whirl. Still my all-time favorite city in the world, right up there with London.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 24, 2012 at 3:40 PM

      Hmmm can’t agree with London but we do love Rome! Can’t wait to get back there again in a few weeks. Hopefully will return plenty of times 🙂

  10. Vera

    June 24, 2012 at 5:56 PM

    Wow, great pictures with a lot of atmosphere! But also: your fourth sentence describes pretty much what amazes me about Rome -you just keep falling over awesome art, and you always stop and stare and just don’t get used to it! Last but not least: I’m glad I finally found out that my favourite building in Rome is called “The unknown soldier’s tomb” -I heard the Italians (do you actually say Romans? I mean, Romans are the guys from way back when, you know, “The life of Brian” and everything, right?) call it “Mussolini’s typewriter” and was stuck with that… Anyway: cool post, Cole:)!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 25, 2012 at 4:05 PM

      I know officially that is what they (I think you call them Roman’s) call the building. Not sure about a nickname though but Mussolini’s typewriter does fit haha.

  11. Angela

    June 25, 2012 at 11:01 AM

    Lovely pictures, they do justice to Rome’s majesty!

    • Cole Burmester

      June 25, 2012 at 4:08 PM

      Thanks Angela! Was a bit worried that the pictures wouldn’t portray exactly how much we adored Rome but I think we managed alright 🙂

  12. EurotripTips

    June 25, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    Sooo beautiful! Bella Roma 😉

    • Cole Burmester

      June 25, 2012 at 4:09 PM

      Easily one of the most beautiful cities in the world!

  13. Ali

    June 25, 2012 at 2:42 PM

    I almost always prefer color photos, but I do really enjoy black and white. These are some great shots! (Must get back to Italy soon…)

    • Cole Burmester

      June 25, 2012 at 4:09 PM

      We would head back in a heartbeat! And agree that we prefer colour shots too. For some reason I just felt B/W would work best for Rome.

  14. Christy @ Technosyncratic

    June 25, 2012 at 7:17 PM

    That bike photo is awesome! I love these photos in B&W – it really makes them pop.

    And this is random, but what did you think of the Colosseum? When we saw it our first thought was “Isn’t it supposed to be…. bigger?” =P

    • Cole Burmester

      June 26, 2012 at 2:28 PM

      Loved the Colosseum! Was by far my (Cole’s) favourite. Can’t believe they could fit 60,000 or more inside it!

  15. Andrew

    June 25, 2012 at 8:18 PM

    My experience in Rome to date has been a slice of pizza across from the main train station. There wasn’t time for more, but really even the bits of ruins from the train to the airport were impressive. It is definitely on our list to see more of it. I did enjoy my pizza though.

    • Cole Burmester

      June 26, 2012 at 2:29 PM

      Can’t beat pizza in Italy! I have dough running through my veins at the moment haha.

  16. Stephanie - The Travel Chica

    June 28, 2012 at 12:52 AM

    These all look great in black and white.

  17. Jenna

    July 1, 2012 at 4:25 PM

    Great collection of photos. I love that you used black and white. It really highlights the lines, especially in the architecture.

    • Cole Burmester

      July 2, 2012 at 4:17 PM

      Thanks Jenna! I think the Black and White helped too. Kind of wish I did colour and black and white side by side 🙂

  18. Matt Gibson

    July 10, 2012 at 4:13 PM

    Nice photos! Are you entering the Capture the Colour contest?

  19. Cheryl

    July 16, 2012 at 7:53 PM

    Agree, Roma is one of the best cities on earth! Cool making all of your shots B & W.

  20. Escaping Abroad

    July 20, 2012 at 3:25 AM

    Loving the black and white! That shot of the Colosseum is a winner!

  21. Zorica

    May 29, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    Wow amazing photos 🙂 And black and white works just well!

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Adventure Travel

Top of Cappadocia day trek – with Middle Earth Travel



Trekking through the valleys of Cappadocia’s fairy chimneys with Middle Earth Travel feels more like the set of a Star Wars movie than a historical region once carved out and lived in by humans. Churches, homes and pigeon houses are scattered throughout the valleys, all waiting to be explored. The best part is, Middle Earth Travel know all the hidden secrets.

Standing at the top of Cappadocia

Top of Cappadocia day trek – with Middle Earth Travel

On the 26th of July (which just so happens to be my birthday!) Middle Earth Travel took us on their private and guided Top of Cappadocia day trek. From Pasabag, along the top of Cappadocia and down through the Gulludere Rose Valley to Goreme, we trekked 15kms in one day! (We recommend getting your bearings with this map)

Upon arrival to the Middle Earth Offices, we were warmly greeted by our new friend Atil whom we had met a few days earlier while mountain biking through the Kizilcukur Red Valley. We were then introduced to our guide and given a briefing regarding the day. Normally, the Top of Cappadocia tour would start from Çavuşin, however, since we had already explored Çavuşin Castle, they adapted our tour to compensate ensuring we would explore new terrain!

With charged cameras, plenty of water and our running shoes on, we were driven to our starting point of Pasabag. We wandered through the fairy chimneys, coming across camels and markets – then the true hike began.

Pasabag in Cappadocia

The police station in Pasabag, Cappadocia

Camel in Pasabag, Cappadocia

Camel in Pasabag, Cappadocia

It was a slow and gentle incline. With no trees to provide shade, I quickly realised why our tour guide had chosen to wear fully covered clothing! As the sweat quickly set in (a waterfall in Moss’s case) we snapped away with our cameras and enjoyed the entertaining shapes of Imagine Valley and the amazing view. We also passed a lot of rock piles, which according to our guide mean ‘father’ and are built to help lead the way.

Animal shaped formations in Imagine Valley

Animal shaped formations in Imagine Valley

Middle Earth Travel, Cappadocia

Making our way to the top of Cappadocia

Father leading the way (rock pile)

Father leading the way (rock pile)

The higher we trekked, the more breath taking the views became! As we walked along the summit of Bozdag mountain (the Top of Cappadocia) we could see EVERTHING – Pasabag, Çavuşin Castle, Kizilcukur Red Valley, Gulludere Rose Valley and Goreme. We were on the Father of Valleys! After a quick nod of agreement to the guide, we pushed ourselves the extra distance and made our way to the flag, as this HAD to be the highest point and was definitely worth a photo and a selfie or two!

View from the top of Cappadocia

View from the top of Cappadocia

Flag at top of Cappadocia

From the flag we looked down upon Aktepe Hill which is known as a popular destination for watching the sun set and could spot Kizilvadi Restaurant, our destination for lunch! Kizilvadi Restaurant is an attraction of its own. With its own historic winery and Grape church, plus some Middle Earth Travel treks even stay there for the night! After having a massive feed of soup, salad and pasta plus a surprise birthday cake, we made our way down into Gulludere Rose Valley.

Kizilvadi Restaurant

Kizilvadi Restaurant

The scenery is amazing, with strong colours visible in perfect layers on the chimneys, you would wonder what an artist was thinking, had it been a painting. Also, hidden to the side of the track we walked across a little bridge and not expecting anything to be there we were wowed by the massive church carved. It was absolutely huge and hard to believe that its most recent use has been as a pigeon house!

Coloured chimneys in Cappadocia

Coloured chimneys in Cappadocia

Pigeon houses in Cappadocia

Pigeon houses in Cappadocia

Church in Gulludere Rose Valley

Hard to believe this Church is carved inside a fairy chimney!

Middle Earth Travel Review

  • The team at Middle Earth Travel were extremely knowledgeable and certainly know Cappadocia’s hidden secrets. They have friendships with local tea garden owners which is also of benefit as it gained us entry to locked churches and hidden rooms that we would not have otherwise seen.
  • We covered a lot of ground, however we did not feel rushed. The whole day focused on showing us the region, therefore we had as much time as we needed to explore each church and to take ‘just one more photo’.
  • It wasn’t all about trekking. With a whole day and 15kms to cover, there were a few silly poses (especially in Imagine Valley), and we learnt a lot about the myths, legends and way of life in Cappadocia.
  • In conclusion I highly recommend Middle Earth Travel if you wish to go trekking or mountain biking in Cappadocia.
  • Cost: Day treks with Middle Earth Travel range from 50-90 euro, depending on the number of people taking part. This includes lunch, guide, vehicle transfers and entrance fees to historical sites, but excludes alcoholic and soft drinks.
  • Middle Earth Travel are outdoor enthusiasts and offer multi-day over night treks, mountain biking, abseiling, or custom made itineraries, in multiple regions throughout Turkey.

Disclaimer: We were provided with a discount for the trek with Middle Earth Travel, however, as always our thoughts on our adventure travel blog our own.

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Amsterdam Food Guide

If you think of Amsterdam you don’t think of food. However if you try the food here in our Amsterdam food guide you might get lucky.




Amsterdam Food Waffles

We are total foodies and our travelling has allowed our passion for food to grow considerably (not to mention our waist lines)!  We love trying new food when we visit foreign countries and always make a huge effort to eat the local cuisine. Check out some of the food we ate below in our cheap and delicious Amsterdam Food Guide.

Amsterdam Food Waffles

We had heard from a number of people that the Amsterdam food was nothing to rave about. To be honest food was not really our main interest in visiting but then again neither was an Amsterdam Peep show and we ended up enjoying that!

However we were pleasantly surprised. I think the people whom we had talked to had it wrong. Sure Holland doesn’t really have a local cuisine but once we got over this fact we realised there is still some damn good food to be had from the various Amsterdam Restaurants.

Amsterdam Food

The best meal we had was actually next door to the Red Light district in Chinatown. Crossing the canal to the east away from the neon lights your nostrils are attacked and your mouth begins salivating from the delicious smells wafting along the narrow cobbled streets.

As we walked into Bird Thai restaurant the enticing aroma hit us instantly leaving us drooling in anticipation. It was definitely up there with some of the best Thai food we have had. We went for the classic Green curry, fried rice and duck combo.

The Green curry was so flavoursome with the richness of the coconut milk blending perfectly with the traditional spices.  The duck was cooked to perfection and for the first few minutes of the meal all you could hear was the crunching of the crispy outside layer as we devoured the duck in minutes. Needless to say the fried rice was a taste explosion too!

Cheap and delicious Amsterdam food is easy to come by. With hangovers and munchies affecting your hunger it is no surprise that there are an abundance of Fast Food chains and takeaways in Amsterdam. In fact it was actually more the way that the fast food was served that surprised us as you could buy it out of massive vending machines at Febo!

Amsterdam Food Febo

Hidden workers stand behind the vending machines churning out burgers, fries and sausage rolls so all you has to do is insert a Euro and “hey presto” you have a hot meal in your hungry hands.

Then there were the frites stores which seemed to be on every corner. The first thing you noticed about these was the tantalising smell. There is nothing like the smell of chips straight out of the fryer and covered in salt to get you tummy rumbling. Served in a triangle cardboard carton and covered in mayo which meant that that you couldn’t reach the chips at the bottom without covering your greedy fingers in sauce. Just a tad annoying!

But there is nothing like hot chips to warm you up on a cold day.

Finally, while hot chocolates are not typically food I feel they still deserve a mention especially because the usually come paired with waffles! Ahhhh the perfect breakfast.

Amsterdam Hot Chocolate

We loved nipping into a cafe or bar like Cafe Bar Eddy in Amsterdam to warm ourselves up with a hot chocolate. It literally tasted like they had melted chocolate down and added cream. Heaven in a cup. And the choice of waffles was daunting as you could have whatever you wanted. Fruit, chocolate, syrups, cream or all of the above!

If you are heading here then don’t expect to find an array of traditional Amsterdam food. Instead treat yourself to a hot chocolate and waffle for breakfast, grab a quick bite from a vending machine and sample some of the different cuisines found near the Red Light District.

If you stick to this Amsterdam food guide then your taste buds will have a great holiday too!

If you have visited before then what did you think of Amsterdam food?

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How to smoke weed in Amsterdam

Check out our guide for the first timer in Amsterdam visiting a coffeeshop.



How to smoke weed in Amsterdam

Before getting started I just want to clarify that we are not drug users. We don’t condone using illegal drugs. And we are not telling you to go and smoke weed in Amsterdam. BUT, our goal of this travel blog is to help advise, educate and provide travel tips for ALL situations. So if you are headed to Amsterdam then we hope our guide to smoking weed in Amsterdam will help you out.

And check out this smoker friendly accommodation for your next trip.

How to smoke weed in Amsterdam Coffeeshop

When you tell people that you are visiting Amsterdam then they immediately think of one thing and one thing only. Weed. Dope. Herb. Buds. Spliff. Whacky Tobbacky. Pot. Marijuana. Cannabis. 

Call it what you will but just know that the biggest name for it is “ILLEGAL”.

Yes it is actually illegal to smoke weed in Amsterdam. But for now the Netherlands government do tolerate smoking in designated “coffeeshops”. This is slowly changing as the Government tries to moderate the tourism drug trade and in 2013 there will be new laws which we won’t go in to now as they are continuously changing.

In the meantime if you obey the rules, are not a moron and use our guide to smoking weed in Amsterdam then you are going to be fine.

Smoke weed in Amsterdam

How to smoke weed in Amsterdam

Don’t smoke weed in Amsterdam in public such as on the streets. There are over 300 designated coffee shops where you are tolerated to smoke weed. These places are regulated and everything is done in the open.

Don’t get confused and try to smoke in a koffiehuis (coffee house) which sells coffee and light meals or a café that is a casual restaurant and/or bar.

The coffeeshops are super easy to spot with marijuana leaves in the windows and Bob Marley paintings on the doors. Not to mention the smell wafting through the cold breeze. There will also be the usual tourists that have stupidly over-indulged and are glassy eyed.

We visited one of the five Bulldog coffeeshops when we were in Amsterdam and had no complaints. We even enjoyed a delicious hot chocolate while we were there!

Bulldog Coffeeshop in Amsterdam

Buying weed in Amsterdam

As long as you are over 18 then you will be allowed to buy up to 5 grams of weed in the regulated coffeeshops. Plus you have the added security knowing that your marijuana is not going to be laced with anything else if you are attempting to buy it off someone on the street. And who knows, they might be setting you up to get busted.

We were (and are) total amateurs and had no idea what to do once we actually stepped foot in the coffeeshop. But quickly sussed it out. There will generally be a “dealer bar” with full menu’s and everything for you to choose. So if you are an expert you will probably know what to order! Prices will of course vary by quantity (grams, bags, individual joints) and quality.

For a beginner ask lots of questions. Don’t be shy like we were. Ask the staff what they recommend and what effects each type has. They will know then that you are a newbie and will guide you. Just know that they are very accustomed to tourists who don’t know exactly how to go about the whole process.

What we found out is that it is actually perfectly fine for you to visit other coffeeshops and smoke weed that you have already purchased somewhere else. However, it is considered rude not to at least buy a hot chocolate or coffee if you do this. Coffeeshops do also have some of the best coffee in Amsterdam.

How to smoke weed in Amsterdam

Don’t be an idiot

Number 1 rule: Don’t smoke too much weed in Amsterdam! Even if you are a pot loving hippie from a commune you are probably going to find the marijuana really strong in Amsterdam. Just take it slow.

If you are enjoying a drink as well then again take it easy with the booze. All the coffeshops won’t sell you beer as well as cannabis.

EAT! Don’t go drinking and smoking on an empty stomach as cannabis lowers your blood sugar level and this can turn a fun day into a disaster if you haven’t eaten recently. Check out our Amsterdam Food Guide for some quick eating tips here.

A final word of warning, please watch out for the spacecake! Eating cannabis will knock you on your ass and is much stronger than when smoked.

Finally, enjoy yourselves and for goodness sake obey the rules, laws and customs while you are smoking weed in Amsterdam.

If you have an addiction to drugs then reach out and seek some help.

Check out these Weed Products for your next travel adventure.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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