I remember I was super excited when we arrived and took me some time to believe where actually I was.
I simply love history and just imagining that I would be walking through so many historical sites, I just couldn’t believe it was really happening.
In this post, I’ll share with you everything I managed to do during these three days.
Or you can go straight to the point and get here my Google Maps with all the places and restaurants conveniently marked for you. 😉
As a general piece of advice: Rome is full of history, as you probably already know, so to make your experience even better, how about studying their history beforehand or use Rick Steve‘s app for that, which I totally recommend.
I’m telling you that, because I think you’d be missing out a lot if you don’t know at least a bit of their history, or simply don’t have any idea what the places used to represent. 😉
Another important note about Rome: WALK!
This is a city to explore, taking the time to wander around (sometimes without destination), just enjoying the city!
Day 1 – Ancient Rome
Buy your tickets online as lines are SUPER LONG there!
(yes, even if you’re planning to go early in the morning)
Also, download Rick Steve‘s app and use his Colosseum audio tour, which was awesome and totally free.
The same tickets that you use to access the Colosseum also allow you to visit also this amazing site, one of the most ancient parts of the city.
Again, I highly recommend using Rick Steve‘s audio tour here to get the most out of it.
Here is where Rome was born!
These are ruins of several important government buildings, or at least as they were centuries ago.
Rick Steve has a very good audio tour to guide you throughout all these buildings and give you a bit of history.
Take a break from all the morning walk at this piazza and admire its surrounds and buildings designed by Michelangelo.
Have a quick stop at Rome’s central hub.
Admire all the impressive buildings surrounding this piazza, including Altar of the Fatherland (on the photo below).
Largo di Torre Argentina
Take some time trying to spot all cats that now inhabit in these ruins.
Campo de’ Fiori – Market
It’s a very nice market, with fresh produce, some souvenirs and Italian goods.
If you’re looking for some genuine and out-of-ordinary gift ideas, this is the right place to go for.
Entrance is free, the interior is absolutely fabulous, just be mindful of the dress code: no bare shoulders allowed.
Piazza Navona and Fiumi Fountain
Have some rest at this outstanding piazza built in the 1st century AD.
The famous fountain indeed deserves a visit.
I know my photo doesn’t show it, but this place is PACKED.
So in case you want good shots, I recommend you visiting it early in the morning (or exercising your patience trying to get the perfect shot).
Where to eat
Amazing 3-course meal close to the Colosseum.
Hands down the best Margherita pizza in Rome.
Mimì e Cocò
Good for a light dinner and some drinks, or even a happy hour.
Best Tiramisu I’ve ever had! (yes, and they come in two sizes! :P)
Delicious homemade-style gelato to refresh your day. 🙂
Day 2 – Vatican and Trastevere
Piazza San Pietro and St. Peter’s Basilica.
As the entrance to the Basilica is free, lines can get very long, so I suggest starting your Vatican tour here.
We arrived relatively early, around 8am (gates open at 9am), and lines were starting to form.
In case you want to climb the Duomo (prepare your legs) you will have to pay for it. (totally worth it, recommended!)
Also be aware that bare shoulders or anything above the knees are prohibited according to dress code in place.
So make sure to wear the proper clothes on the day. 🙂
Vatican Museum & Sistine Chapel
Make sure to buy your tickets online in advance.
Lines get seriously long there!
Here again I used Rick Steve‘s App and it was amazing, especially all his explanation about the Sistine Chapel and its construction, unmissable.
Castle St. Angelo
In case you have time, have a quick stop here, what was once Hadrian’s mausoleum, one of the most important Roman Emperors, today works as a museum.
Piazza del Popolo
Now a peaceful and enjoyable piazza was once a place for public executions. 😳
Going uphill, close to Piazza del Popolo, you will find this beautiful and peaceful park to rest a bit from all the walk.
Piazza di Spagna
Another typical Roman site packed with tourists. 😬
(photo below was during peak hours, in the middle of the afternoon)
Terrazza del Gianicolo
Good views from Rome guaranteed!
To reach the top, head back through Porta Settimiana, take Via Garibaldi, then Passeggiata del Gianicolo; you’ll see the Garibaldi statue at the top.
Can you spot the Colosseum in my photo?
In case you still have time and energy, explore this island and special views from the emerald Tiber River.
This bridge was built between 1473 and 1479, giving you excellent views of the Tiber river and a nice welcome to Trastevere.
Where to eat
Amazing food and service, generous servings of meat, close to the Vatican.
Where to find the best Cacio e Pepe in Rome?
Roma Sparita is the answer!
Delicious gelato a few blocks away from the main attractions in the Vatican area.
Gelateria Artigianale La Strega Nocciola
Yummy gelato to cool things down after finding your way around the huge crowds next to Piazza di Spagna.
Gelateria Alla Scala
Gelato da mama at Trastevere.
Day 3 – Day trip to Naples
We decided to take a day trip off to have some delicious pizza in Naples!
Keep reading to find my full itinerary for 1 day in Naples.
Where to eat
Easily one the best pizzas I’ve ever had.
Do I need to say more? 😝
Gran Caffè Gambrinus
A good place to have a cappuccino and the two types of sfogliatelle: frolla (rounded) and riccia (curly).