`4 days in Rome, What to see & do

Nov 10th, 2004, 09:23 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2004
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`4 days in Rome, What to see & do

We will be ariving in Rome on 01-11-05. We have four days. By the time we get to our hotel it will be late afternoon of the first day. We then have 3 full days left. Where should we start. Do we need tour guides? I really like to do things on my own. Is this realistic? If anyone could help me lay out the best itinerary please HELP> I want to see it all. Thanks, Brenda
summersquash is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 03:42 AM
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In 3 full days you can't see it all.
I suggest you do a search here.You'll find tons of information re. Rome itineraries. List the things you want to do. Both of you (assuming two) then choose what are "musts", "really want to experience", "want to experience", etc.
I tend to think most would say one day devoted to ancient Rome and one at the Vatican are "musts". The third day has lots of possibilities, but depends on your desires.
You can do most without a tour guide, but not as well. I really think a tour of the Forum is a must. No tour book can do it as well.
I,as most others, also recommend the Scavi tour and that is only done with a guide.
You can get a free guide at St. Peter's.
We did not have a guide at the Vatican museum,but plan to have one next year.
jabez is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:38 AM
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I usually see the sites in the morning/early afternoon and leave the late afternoon/evening for strolling around. I think that's the best part about Rome-there's a suprise around every corner. Piazza Navonna, Pantheon, Spanish Steps. Trevi Fountain. All good strolling areas. (The fountains are wonderful at night) Spend an early evening in Trastevere.

See if you can do a Scavi Tour-otherwise Rome is easy to explore on your own. Read up on the things you will be seeing ahead of time.

It's good to lay out a city map and plan your day accordingly so you're not running all over the city.

Be sure to go to Campo dei Fiori in the morning for the market. Go to Santa Maria Novella. Eat gelato every time you can.

Don't wear yourself out trying to see it all. You can't!
offwego is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:42 AM
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I'm not sure what Offwego means by Santa Maria Novella. The church of that name is in Florence, not Rome.

Perhaps Santa Maria della Vittoria, with the Bernini scuplture of Saint Teresa...?
Eloise is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:42 AM
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You could reserve tickets for the Papal audience for Wednesday 1/12 if you are interested in seeing the Pope. Plan your visit to the Vatican Museum/Sistine Chapel for another morning as they are only open until 1:45 in the winter. www.vatican.va
kybourbon is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:48 AM
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Hi Brenda,

First, what format are you using for the date you will arrive in Rome? January 11, 2005, or 01 November 05? Not that it matters, but I just like things clear.

You can do most of your must do things in the three and a half days you are there, but a lot of "want to do things" will be left out, as jabez suggests.

You will want to do the Vatican and the museums there, of course, and the Roman Forum area, but for beyond that, I suggest you develop your own walking tours.

Get the Fodors City Pack guide for Rome, and it will have a walking tour route in the narrative. Then get the Rick Steves guide for Rome, and it will have two or three walking tour routes.

Get a plastic coated map of Rome, and using felt tip pens, transcribe the walking tours onto the map, making sure you use a different color for each of the walking tours. Before transcribing onto the map, adjust the walking tour according to what YOU want to see.

On the day you take a particular walking tour, take a taxi or public transportation to the FARTHEST point of your walking tour, as when you finish, you will be tired, and will be closer to your hotel at the finish.

I would be happy to send you my "Journal - Amazing Italy" which includes descriptions of our three free days in Rome and the walking tours we did.

If you want it, write to me at "[email protected]" (don't use the quotemarks, of course).

Anyone else who wants the journal (after the first three days, it is about an Insight Vacations escorted tour), please let me know.

Infotrack is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:54 AM
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If you do a search,you'll find thread after thread that answers this question for you.
massagediva is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 05:13 AM
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If you click at the top of this screen on Destinations you will get to lots of info on Rome, including itinerary ideas for short visits.

I don't take guided tours in every city, but I did in Rome and was very happy I did so. I used Context Rome/Scala Reale which provides small group tours (6 or fewer) and incredibly informative guides. Others here have been very happy with Enjoy Rome, which has larger groups but is less expensive...
The two best venues for a guided tour are the Colosseum/Roman Forum, and the Vatican. Although good audio guides are also available at that location, walking through with a guide (one who speaks good English, I might add) can really open up the experience.

As suggested, buy a map in advance to get oriented a bit. Where are you staying?

I have a long file on Rome; if you'd like to see it and your email can accept large attachments, email me at
[email protected]
elaine is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 08:20 AM
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If I were you, with three days, I would focus one day on ancient Rome (focus on Roman Forum, Colosseum, and Palatine Hill). A tour would be great for that day. Another for the Vatican - museum, cathedral, possibly Scavi Tour (hours are more limited in winter). The third day would include a walk from Campo dei Fiori to Spanish Steps or even Piazza del Popolo and would include the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, and Trevi Fountain.
dan_woodlief is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 10:51 AM
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Sorry Eloise I mean the Santa Maria Novella STORE in Rome. Not as grand as the Mother Store in Florence but full of the same wonderful products.
offwego is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 11:07 AM
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We'll be in Rome for 4 days also. Does any one recommend a one day trip to Assissi/Orvieto? My Mom's really religious and I hear that's a 'must do'. Let me know your thoughts.....
sammyc is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 08:08 PM
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Thanks for all your help. Now I just have to digest it all and make some plans. I usually plan, plan, plan, but when I get to my destination it all goes out the window. I know that I only have a short amount of time so I am going to try to stay focused, and stay with the plan. My 23 yr old daughter will be with me so she will be dragging me from morning to night to see it all. And "Infotrack" I mean January 11. Wish me luck.
summersquash is offline  
Nov 11th, 2004, 09:12 PM
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What area of Rome will you be staying in?

Might be able to help you with store, restaurant or just specific area tips if we know.

Per your request, I am wishing you luck!
ecat is offline  
Nov 16th, 2004, 08:04 PM
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We are staying in the Termini area, north of the Termini Station. I did buy the Fodor's City PAck "Rome's Best" and a good map of Rome. I will map out my days as I gather information. Any help would be great. Thanks
summersquash is offline  
Nov 17th, 2004, 12:55 AM
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summersquash, we had 4 nights in Rome and loved it. It was our first family trip to Italy.

Here's what we did:
1st full day: Morning: Ancient Rome: Pantheon, Colosseum, Roman Forum, etc. We started with a 3-hour private guided tour with a licensed guide. Fascinating sights, great guide. Afternoon: After a rest at our hotel we saw sights you can walk to in a wonderfully atmospheric area near the Pantheon: the Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navonna, Spanish Steps.

2nd Full day: We saw St. Peter's Basilica and Vatican museums on our own. St. Peter's is awesome! Sistine chapel is beautiful.

3rd full day: I did my research and brought info with me but left this day entirely unplanned as "free choice" day...by your last day you will know how you want to spend it!

If you'd like to know more about our trip you can e-mail me at hazelnutgela[email protected]. Please mention Italy in the subject line so I will know it's not junk mail.

Buon viaggio!
Nov 17th, 2004, 03:38 AM
Join Date: Jul 2004
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One thing to keep in mind is that nov-march, the vatican museums close at 1:30pm and stop selling tickets at noon. Scavi tours at St. Peters are also only offered in the morning(9-noon, and you do not get to pick your time). Given that, it will not be possible to do both on the same day. So, as much as I liked the scavi tour, I reccomend that you skip it unless you want to spend 2 mornings in the vatican. The coloseum, roman forum and palatine hill will close one hour before sunset, which means around 4:30pm.
ssachida is offline  
Nov 17th, 2004, 04:05 AM
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If you haven't done so already, I'd suggest that you study this thread:

TuckH is offline  
Nov 17th, 2004, 04:38 AM
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If you do not have a good map of Rome already, I highly recommend the Streetwise map. It is detailed, readable, compact and laminated - we use them everywhere and they are great.
mamc is offline  

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