Rome is a city that has the ability to deliver in a multitude of ways.
I love Italy. Like, loooooooove. And I am speaking broadly here, because as well all know, there are many different destinations within Italy that you can visit and they all will afford you a different experience. But since I have yet to find a region I didn’t like, I am using the blanket for the entire country.
As such, for the past few months I have been blogging about different destinations within Italy, and sharing amazing places to stay, things to see and do, and even some detailed itineraries for some of the more popular destinations. Because there is so much to see, do, and fall in love with in this country, many people choose to include multiple destinations when they visit.
I would like to share with you my perfect two weeks in Italy itinerary, if I was headed there today. Of course, different stages of my life might produce a different itinerary, but for now, this would probably be it. It’s some of my favorite cities, in a logical and easily followed itinerary, that allows you to travel the country by train. (Have I mentioned yet how much I love good public transportation when I travel? I do.)
The energy of the Eternal City with a visit to Rome…
The essence of Tuscany and incomparable charm with a stay in Florence…
The quaintness and beauty by the sea in Cinque Terre…
The romanticism and beautiful spirit of Venice…
Take a look at the outline of my perfect two weeks in Italy and let it inspire you.
But as always, what’s most important is figuring out what your perfect two weeks looks like, and making that come to life. If you are planning a trip for anywhere in Italy, I'd love for you to contact me to start planning the trip of YOUR dreams.
During the last few weeks, I have been showcasing sample daily itineraries for a visit to Rome, Italy’s capital city. In Day 1 of the Rome itinerary, we explored the historical sites and took in some of the most famous ancient monuments. In Day 2 of the Rome itinerary, we headed over to Vatican City to experience the splendor that exists there. The following Rome daily itinerary will be the last in this series, and would be what I would consider my personal favorite. It has less to do with seeing, and is more to do with simply experiencing.
Day 3: The Sweet Life
For your third day in Rome, it’s time to slow down… just a little. This is the day for soaking up Rome. To take in it’s beauty, to appreciate it’s specialness, and to understand what it means to live la dolce vita.
- Begin the day with a visit to Villa Borghese, the largest public park in Rome. It is a pleasant reprise from the noise and heat of the city, and is home to a lake, temples, fountains, statues, and several museums.
- Next, head down a long flight of stairs to Piazza del Popolo. Consider dining outside at Osteria St. Ana. This is the perfect place to grab lunch, have a drink, and do some first-class people watching.
- If shopping is your thing, you are now properly fueled to turn your attention to the several pedestrian-only shopping streets surrounding you.
- Continue your stroll by heading down via Babuino for a visit to one of the world’s most famous squares, Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Square), which sits at the base of the Spanish Steps.
- From there, make your way to the Trevi Fountain, one of Rome’s most dramatic monuments, where you must toss a coin in to assure your next visit to the eternal city. This is also a great place to grab a gelato. (Suggestions: Gelateria Valentino or II Gelato di San Crispino)
- From the Trevi Fountain, continue on to Piazza Navona, via the Pantheon. If you followed my Day 1 Itinerary, you’ve already spent some time at the Pantheon, but it’s worth walking past again on your way towards what could be considered Rome’s most beautiful square, Piazza Navona. The large and lively square features three magnificent fountains. You've now concluded your stroll through what is considered the very heart of Rome.
- For dinner, why not make your own delicious meal, with some help from a professional. Taking a cooking class in Rome will allow you to return home with some skills to replicate (or at least try) some of the amazing dishes you had while on vacation.
- End your night with a perfectly made cocktail in a chic and trendy atmosphere at Hotel Russie’s Stravinskij Bar. They have a lovely hidden garden in the center of Rome and one of the cities most extraordinary cocktail lists.
Now that you've read Day 3, make sure you read Day 1 and Day 2 to get an idea of how you can make the most out of your time and have a good starting point for creating a Rome itinerary for 3 days. In addition, check out my post on where to stay in Rome for a great boutique hotel option in the heart of the city.
This concludes my overview of what I hope looks like an amazing Rome 3 day itinerary map for you to consider. Now, here is where the tough decision making comes. Do you stay longer to see and experience more of the eternal city? Do you head on to another part of Italy and continue your exploration of this beautiful country? Or do you set your sights on a different part of Europe and make this trip a multi-country exploration? Wherever your wanderlust is leading you, I hope you let Milk and Honey Travels help get you there!
To download an easy to follow PDF snapshot of the whole 3 Day Rome Itinerary, click here.
If you are interested in planning a vacation to Italy, it is one of my favorite destinations to create tailor-made itineraries for. Let's chat about what a perfect trip to Italy looks like for you.
Last week I blogged about how most visits to Italy include a stopover in the capital, and how you should allocate a full 3 days minimum in order to experience the city. This blog series will share a detailed Rome itinerary for 3 days, and all the attractions you should make sure are part of your travels. To read more in depth about my Rome Day 1 itinerary, make sure to read my blog about travel tips for visiting the historic sites in Rome.
This post is for Day 2 in Rome, and will provide you with a Vatican City itinerary, and the attractions and activities I believe are not to be missed, especially if this is your first time to the eternal city.
Day 2: The Spiritual
Vatican City is an independent city-state surrounded by Rome, and is the ecclesiastical home of Roman Catholicism. The main sites here are the Vatican grounds and Museums, Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, and St. Peter’s Square.
- Consider visiting the Vatican museums and Sistine Chapel first, either first thing in the morning, or early afternoon when the morning crowds have died down a bit. Make a reservation on the Vatican Museum’s website beforehand.
- If you are mainly interested in looking at the artwork, a tour isn’t really necessary. If you are fascinated by the history and learning more about the artwork, consider a tour. On an individual tour, the guide can show you parts of the museum not normally visited by the standard tours. Consider an exclusive, private visit to the Sistine Chapel for a truly unique and emotional experience. This type of tour must be reserved far in advanced, but is worthwhile.
- The Sistine Chapel is certainly one of the world’s greatest masterpieces, and Michelangelo outdid himself with the painting of the ceiling that will take your breath away and render you speechless…which is a good thing because noise in here is frowned upon.
- Lunch Break. All the walking around and effort it takes to gaze at past priceless splendors is enough to build up quite the appetite. Consider a quick lunch in the Piatti neighborhood before heading on over to St. Peter’s Basilica.
- The first building you will see from Bernini’s colonnaded St. Peter’s square is the largest church in the world: St. Peter’s Basilica. Highlights inside include many works by Bernini, Michelangelo’s Pieta, and the oldest statue of St. Peter in existence.
- Next, make your way to Michelangelo’s other masterpiece, St. Peter’s dome. When you find your way to the top, you are greeted with a breathtaking panorama of Rome, and if you time it right, the sun beginning to set over the eternal city and covering it in a rose-gold light.
- For dinner, chose an establishment simply known for their good food and where you can dine alongside the locals, such as Da Enzo. Here, the superstar will be the food and your meal will certainly be memorable. During the summer months, make sure to have a reservation, as it is a very small restaurant.
- After dinner, take the short stroll to the Spanish Steps, which will provide the perfect people-watching perch.
ADDITIONAL TIPS FOR VISITING ROME:
Where to stay: See my post on a great boutique hotel in Rome here.
Where to go next: Consider a Rome and Amalfi Coast itinerary and this beautiful resort I highlighted here.
To put this Vatican city itinerary together with another detailed itinerary for visiting the Roman historical sites, click here.
If you like these Rome daily itineraries, check back next week for Day 3!
Italy is one of my favorite countries. It has all the right ingredients for everything I love about travel. The culture. The history. The food. The shopping. The beauty. The scenery. The romance. But above all, Italians have an appreciation for life that I envy and want more of. This is why a meal in Italy takes at minimum 3 hours if you are doing it right. You cannot truly appreciate a meal with loved ones in 45 minutes, and if you are eating in Italy, it would be crazy of you to try.
For many visitors to Italy, Rome will certainly be part of the plan. When you have a multi-destination itinerary, people always wonder how much time should be allotted in each place, and whether or not they deserve a stay or can be done in a day trip. What I will say about Rome is… It wasn’t built in a day, so don’t expect to see it in one. If possible, I would suggest at least 3 full days in the city to ensure you get some quality time to see and do a variety of things and not feel too rushed. In a 3 day itinerary I have put together for clients in the past, we dedicated one full day to exploring the historic center, but you could easily stretch this out to a week if this is where your interests lie and ancient monuments are something you are passionate about.
There is something for everyone in what is known as the eternal city, and any list you come across should simply be thought of as a guideline, and further tailored to fit your individual tastes. I’m the type of person that runs through a famous museum so I can cross it off my list (and checkin on Facebook) and then would be blissfully happy sitting at an outdoor cafe and people watching the rest of the afternoon. So, more than anything I always encourage people to pay special attention to what kind of experience they are looking to have no matter what the destination or what any fancy guidebook tells you.
So, what would my own 3 days in Rome look like? Let’s start with Day 1, where for me it makes sense to start with the history. View this as a bit of insight into how I work and create itineraries, and use it to inspire your own wanderlust.
Day 1: The History
The historic heart of the city, called Centro Storico, includes the Michelangelo-designed Campidoglio, the Pantheon, the Palatine Hill and the Roman Forum, as well as the nearby Colosseum and Baths of Caracalla.
- My suggestion would be to start your day visiting the Colosseum and the Forum. (tip: make sure you buy the Roma Pass). A tour of the Colosseum allows you to learn about the construction and history of one of the most famed structures of all time. It also allows you to imagine yourself as a Gladiator. (bonus points if your significant other resembles Russell Crowe)
- Next up is the Forum, where you will tour what was ancient Rome’s showpiece centre. So much history was shaped here, and unless you are a total history buff, I would recommend a guided tour or at least an audio tour to properly put things in perspective.
- You most certainly have worked up an appetite by now, so if you’re up for something special, have lunch at Aroma restaurant, set in a magical rooftop garden setting, with stunning views of the Colosseum.
- Finish your history day with a tour of the Pantheon, a Roman temple dedicated to all the gods of Pagan Rome. It is the most preserved and influential building of ancient Rome.
- After a nap (when in Rome…), make your way down to Trastevere. The former ghetto is chalk full of various restaurants and bars sure to please every budget and taste, with plenty of choices for entertainment afterwards.
Additional tips for Rome:
Where to stay: See my post on a great boutique hotel in Rome here.
Where to go next: Consider the Amalfi Coast and this beautiful resort I highlighted here.
Interested in the next 2 days of my Rome Itinerary? Check back next week and I will also include the 3 day Itinerary for you to download!