With three days in Rome, there’s time to check off all the must-see sights and also explore a little farther afield. Look out for sightseeing passes and super saver deals offering discounts on combined tours, and then splash out on one or two unforgettable experiences. Here’s how to spend three days in Rome.
Day 1: Discover Historic Rome
To get the lay of the land, you may want to start things off with a comprehensive full-day Rome tour or opt for a special VIP experience at a top landmark, such as breakfast at the Vatican or a night tour of the Colosseum. For independent travelers, a hop-on hop-off bus tour is a great way to get around, offering the convenience of a tour while leaving you free to decide where to go and how long to stay at each stop. Spend the morning touring the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter’s Basilica, then continue to the Colosseum and Roman Forum. Be sure to book skip-the-line tickets, as wait times can be more than two hours at peak times. Finally, hop off at popular photo stops like the Spanish Steps and the Trevi Fountain.
Day 2: Take a Day Trip
Many of Italy’s top attractions can be visited on a day trip from Rome, so you have options. To maximize your time, opt for a full-day tour that visits multiple destinations. Perhaps head south to discover the remarkably preserved ruins of ancient Pompeii and admire the views along the Amalfi Coast, both UNESCO World Heritage sites. Or, head a little farther to Sorrento and catch a ferry out to Capri island. If you don’t mind a long day out, it’s also possible to take day tours to visit Venice, explore the Renaissance city of Florence, or discover the medieval towns and award-winning wineries of Tuscany. If you’re on a budget, look for a tour that includes extras like hotel pickup, entrance fees, and lunch.
Day 3: Eat Your Way Around Rome
Spend your final morning visiting any sights that you’ve missed—the Borghese Gallery is a must for art fans, while history enthusiasts might prefer to explore the Catacombs of Rome or the ruins of Palatine Hill. In the afternoon, set out to sample as much of Rome’s delicious cuisine as you can. A food-tasting tour is a brilliant way to taste pizzas, pasta dishes, and street food favorites like suppli (deep-fried rice and mozzarella balls), gelato, and sweet Maritozzi pastries. Alternatively, sign up for a pizza- or pasta-making class and learn the skills to recreate these classic Italian dishes back home. On your final evening, head to the lively Trastevere district to experience Rome’s nightlife and take a stroll along the illuminated riverfront.