3 Days in Rome
Three days seems like hardly enough time to spend in The Eternal City but, if you’re short on time -we’ve put together the perfect itinerary for you, covering all the bases:
Start your day wandering around the Jewish Ghetto and Trastevere. Not too far from one another and both extremely rich in history and culture.
Learn the heart-wrenching details of this neighborhood’s history and make sure you pay a visit to The Great Synagogue*, Teatro Marcello, the Jewish Museum of Rome and the many wonderful shops and restaurants in this area.
Before walking across one of the oldest (and in our opinion, one of the most beautiful) of Rome’s many bridges – Ponte Fabricio, it’s time for a quick break at Rimessa Roscioli. The newest outpost from a family that has made a name for themselves after 4 generations and now 4 food & wine establishments of the highest quality, here in Rome. This is the perfect stop for a wine tasting - not to mention, they have an excellent selection of cheeses and salami.
Once you cross over to the other side of the Tiber River, you have now entered Trastevere. A neighborhood famous for its charming and picturesque ivy-covered streets – which are still well-persevered. One of the last working-class neighborhoods in Rome, Trastevere is now home to many amazing restaurants, both new and old. If you’re getting hungry but don’t want to interrupt your momentum – head over to i suppli for that famous Roman snack, perfect to enjoy on the go.
There is no shortage of things to do at night in Rome but since you’re already on the same side of the river- the Vatican really isn’t too far of a walk from Trastevere. And at this hour, it is by far the best time to visit Vatican City. From 8pm to 11pm, there are small (but extremely limited) group tours that enter the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, where you can avoid the normally massive crowds of people that flock over to this site during the day. You may not be able to visit St. Peter’s Basilica, but the outside view that you get from the square definitely makes up for it.
September in Rome can still be a bit hot, especially if you’re standing outside in long queues. This is why we think the best way to see the Colosseum is with a sunset tour from 5-7pm. Of course, you can always wander around on your own, but all of the background and history would be lost without a guided tour. And it’s also a great way to skip the line and see Palantine Hill. Temperatures are more forgiving at this hour, there are less people, and it is a totally different experience at this time of day - with the sun setting over one of the oldest and most stoic structure that is still standing today.
Another must-do is a walk though via dei Fiori Imperiali where you can see all of the ancient ruins start to light up against the night sky. As you come around the bend, you’ll also see the Vittorio Emmanuelle Monument, now surrounded by bright white lights and more majestic than ever. Continue walking Via del Corso and drop by Piazza Navona, home of Bernini’s three famous statues. This square, like many others in Rome, completely transforms itself from day to night, coming alive both with its glowing lights and nighttime energy. Surrounding this square are the most renown churches in Rome (Saint Luigi dei Francesi and Sant’ Agostino, to name a few)– some of which you can catch a glimpse of Caravaggio’s greatest works of art. From there, walk over to the Pantheon – one of our favorite of all the monuments in Rome. By day (at its most crowded) you can visit the inside and see the impressive interiors as well as the tomb of Raphael. But if you can also visit this square by night, the exterior of this massive structure is an amazing sight to see- and not to be missed. If you need a little pick-me-up, Sant’ Eustachio is not too far from here. Here’s where you’ll find in many people’s opinion, the best espresso in Rome. If you’d rather enjoy another type of beverage, visit the stunning Borromini Terrace Rooftop that overlooks Piazza Navona. But be sure to call in advance to make your reservation – this place is both exclusive and popular!
Now it’s time to pop over to the Trevi Fountain. A must-see by day, but also by night. It’s not only less crowded but there is something truly magical upon seeing this fountain all lit up.
You’re not too far from Giolitti – one of the oldest and most delicious gelaterias in Rome. Do as the Romans do and grab a cup or a cone to go as you continue your evening stroll around the historic city center.
You may be tired from the day and night prior, so we would suggest to take it easy on your third day in Rome. If you haven’t seen it before, Campo de’ Fiori is definitely worth the trip. This authentically Roman farmers’ market opens around 8am every morning (except Sundays) and wraps up around 2pm. But we’d suggest going around 9-10am before it becomes too crowded. Walk around the stalls to see the vibrant mix of colors that the fresh produce, spices and flowers create. You’ll most likely work up an appetite here but we would suggest moving away from the square to find somewhere to eat. Better yet…if it’s a nice day out, buy some wine, bread, cheese and salami and have a picnic in Villa Borghese Gardens. It’s the best way to have a long leisurely lunch and allows for some great people watching!
Of course this only scratches the surface, as there is SO much more to see in Rome. But this is great itinerary that covers all of the must-see sights and neighborhoods of Rome. Our last suggestion being… you must plan for another visit back here soon!
*Keep in mind that the Synagogue and most shops and restaurants are closed for the sabbath every Saturday