Ruins in the Roman Forum in Rome, Italy

European Ruins: The Most Awesome Old Stuff

If you’ve been reading for a while, you’ll know that I simply adore ruins. It’s so fascinating to witness the evidence of the passage of time through something so carefully constructed being torn back down to its elements by the sheer force of nature. This juxtaposition of structure turned chaos is beautiful in its unique way, and I can’t get enough of it. If you share in my affinity for the elegance of decay, you’ll love these amazing ruins found all across Europe.

A gazebo frame at the Hotel Belvedere in Dubrovnik, Croatia
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The city wall in Dubrovnik, Croatia

A Glimpse of The City Walls of Dubrovnik

Have you ever dreamed of visiting a walled city?

Dubrovnik was the place I wanted to visit most in Croatia because it is a walled city. This means you go through a gate on either end to enter, and once you are inside, the Old Town sits within the walls. It is an amazing place to visit on its own and walking the city walls is just magical.

The south bay in Dubrovnik, Croatia

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A Glimpse of the Roman Forum

What place have you rushed through before it closed?

The Roman Forum is a plaza surrounded by ruins of ancient government buildings in the heart of Rome. By the time we entered the Roman Forum, we only had about an hour to check it out after visiting the Colosseum. We enjoyed walking along with the tall columns and other ruins. Some ruins date back to 500 B.C. when the Roman Republic started. Not as old as Stonehenge, but still very amazing to see.

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A Glimpse of the Roman Colosseum

Where did you have trouble finding the ticket booth?

The Roman Colosseum was a top priority while we were in Rome. It is one of the oldest ruins being built in 70AD, and it amazes us how much of it is still intact. Just thinking about how this place used to hold 50 to 80 thousand spectators, amazes us. That is about the capacity of an American football stadium.

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A Glimpse of Cerro Cárcel

Where have you found the coolest repurposed spaces?

Atop Cerro Carcel, a hill in Valparaiso, sits a beautiful park. However, this place used to be a prison. The white building no longer houses prisoners, and the old yard has been transformed into a walkable garden.

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A Glimpse of Howth Castle

What do you love to seek out when you travel?

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When we aren’t otherwise chasing beautiful landscapes or diving into the local history, we love love love ruins. Just the way nature starts reclaiming what man once built, that beautiful decay. Picturing how it all looked long ago, what each room was used for. If walls could speak, right?

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