7 days in Rome-too much?

Old Jan 11th, 2015, 01:51 PM
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7 days in Rome-too much?

Hello, please help!

My husband and I are attending a convention in Belgium and since we have never been to Italy and he's grandparents are from Italy we decided to spend an extra 7 days in Rome. we booked our plane tickets and will be in Italy from July 7-14th.

The question is should we do several day trips outside of the city or just soak in Rome and the surrounding areas for a week. We are big history, museum buffs and don't mind sitting on public transportation for an hour or two or more. We also wouldn't mind an early start. Several people have told us that we shouldn't stay in Rome the whole time and that its a shame to waste all that time in Italy on one place. I would loath to keep packing and unpacking though. Any suggestions?

Also should we rent an apartment or hotel?

thanks, Andy.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:10 PM
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I would stay in Rome and do side trips (Ostia, the Vatican which isn't really a side trip, Florence, Pompeii) although you might want to do an overnight to Florence. You could easily spend seven days in Rome, but if you think you'll never be back, try to get at least Florence in as well.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:27 PM
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You can easily spend 30 days in Rome, according to the Michelin Green Guides, and I would if I could. I'd say seven days in Rome, one for each hill, should be easy, quite easy -- no problem -- to fill. Agree that a day trip to Ostia, and maybe another to Hadrian's Villa/Tivoli will break the urban drill. If you need to get away again, there are the Castelli Romani, or the train to Orvieto. People sometimes suggest a day trip to Florence or Pompeii. To me that's too much. And then, you're losing your week in Rome!

Some people do find Rome hectic and dirty and never want to return, and if you think that might be you, then skip it entirely, or divide your time in two. (I apologize for the rhymes and irregular scanning.)
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:32 PM
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Is the burden of unpacking an absolute or a relative disadvantage? If it is an absolute disadvantage, no matter what benefit you would derive from unpacking, you would not do it.

If the burden is relative, you would have to weigh what you can gain by moving around. Some people are emphatic about absolute "you must stay in Rome so many day" rule for all circumstances while others look at each instance to try to manage the number of days for each particular visit. It is up to you which approach you follow.

For example, Rome plus Florence or Rome plus Venice may give you more satisfaction to you than staying the whole time in Rome. This is something you have to come to term yourself. If you frame the question "Is there enough things to Rome for 7 days?" Of course, there are. However, this is a different question from "Would I like staying in Rome for 7 days over 3 days in Rome plus 3 days in Florence or Venice?"

I presume you have already boxed yourself into home-BRU-home flight plus BRU-FCO-BRU flight? For example, if you could have booked home-BRU/FCO-home (multi-city flight), then do BRU-VCE, then do Venice to Rome by train, you would have minimized the travel time by not having to do the extra Rome-Venice trip.

If you stay had to live with home-BRU-home flight, you could have done BRU-VCE, Venice to Rome by train, then do FCO-BRU flight. If you are stuck with BRU-FCO-BRU and want to visit Florence/Venice/Napoli, etc in addition to Rome, travel straight to the "other" destination on landing. This eliminates having to stay in Rome twice -- costs you both time and expenses.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:36 PM
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Lucky you to have a week in Rome! The first time I visited Rome it was only for 1.5 days before a flight home. I had heard that Rome was just a big, polluted, dirty, crowded city. I LOVED IT! Fell in love with Rome and visited again for 6 days another time. Still not enough.

Plan on staying there the entire time, always with the option of a day trip or two. It would also be OK to plan on an overnight in Florence if you are a big Renaissance art & architecture fan. Fast train is easy. My personal recs for day trips would be Hadrian's Villa and Villa d'Este (fountains!) and Orvieto, although I feel Orvieto deserves an overnight. It's special.

If you have never been to Italy before, I might suggest a hotel. It can help to have a reception desk to help with questions, arrangements and suggestions.

However, the advantage of an apartment is that for a week long stay, you have some more of the advantages of home, laundry, breakfast on your own schedule, etc. For July be sure to get AC. If it were me, a terrace would also be a requirement!

Rome is best enjoyed slowly. It is a busy city and so much to see. It can be overwhelming if you feel rushed. With a week you don't have to rush to see the typical highlights.

Buon viaggio!
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:45 PM
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Have you investigated what there is to see and do in Rome and how much of that would interest you? I've been spending considerable time in Rome for the past 20 years, and my list of things to do keeps getting longer rather than shorter. However, other people are not much interested in the things that interest me.

Does your husband know where his grandparents are from? It might be fun to take a side trip to his ancestral town.

By the way, Ostia is actually part of Rome, so I don't know if that would qualify as a day trip out of Rome. However, Ostia Antica is one of my favorite places. I've been there four times and still haven't seen it all.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:46 PM
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We have tickets home to Brussels. Then Brussels to Rome, and Rome to home.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:48 PM
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His grandparents are from the Almafi coast. But, I'm not sure that feasible from Rome. I've looked at all the traditional stops and they seem thrilling.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 02:51 PM
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A week in Rome would be fine for me. As a matter of fact, I had been to Rome 3 times, but never liked it much until I went for a week and got more of a feeling for the city, not just major sights. It will be hot, but you can get up early for outdoor things, and visit cool museums in the afternoons. Works perfectly in summer.

The problem with daytrips is you would be traveling during the cooler mornings and sightseeing in the heat of the afternoons.

Florence isn't that long a trip, but Florence is muggy in Summer, more so than Rome, I feel. Since you are into museums though, do some walking when you arrive, book museums for the afternoon.

I would not do a day trip to Pompeii in July. People do it, but it is too far for a decent day trip and, in July, because of the time involved, you would be there during the hottest part of the day. If Pompeii is a must, you could train down one day, enjoy an afternoon someplace on the coast, tour Pompeii very early the next morning and head back to Rome. You might also consider flying into Naples from Belgium, spend the night somewhere on the coast, see Pompeii very early the next day and head to Rome.

I love the coast, so would probably do a 3/4 split, with three nights on the coast and 4 in Rome. however, that does involve extra packing, etc and it is super crowded at that time of year. I do not mind it, but some people hate it. Personal likes/dislikes.

Orvieto might make a great day trip for you.

Whatever you decide, Italy is so beautiful and interesting and amazing, etc. it will be a wonderful trip.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 03:21 PM
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Well all I can add is the first time we went to Rome we spent the whole 3 week trip there and never regretted it!
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 03:30 PM
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There is more to see in Rome than any other place I have visited. This isn't to say that you shouldn't go anywhere else, but if you do want to stay in Rome there is more than enough to keep you enthusiastically busy.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 03:45 PM
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Seven days in Rome always flies by for me, but you might consider an overnight somewhere if you like. I was in Rome for a week last July taking a class (Rome was mobbed and really hot, of course, but still wonderful IMO), and found a day trip to Orvieto quite worthwhile. I would have liked an overnight but my schedule precluded that. With your husband's interest in Amalfi, perhaps a couple of nights down there makes sense followed by five nights in Rome?
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 03:58 PM
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We stayed 9 nights in Rome and still could have stayed longer and seen more. We took day trips to Tivoli for Hadran's villa and Villa d'Este and Orvieto. We also spent half a day at Ostia Antica. I agree with you about not wanting to pack and unpack and you will not want to waste time changing locations.

I probably wouldn't try the Amalfi Coast in a 7 day trip.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 04:27 PM
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We have been to Italy many times; beginning in 2000, we have visited there virtually yearly, and some years, we have been there twice. I have been particularly fond of Florence, and for the first six or so trips to Italy we included day trips to Rome--either from a cruise ship or from Florence. After six or so of the day trips, two years ago, we went to Rome for a longer periods--four nights.

Then last spring we visited Rome for a week. I admit that I thought we might well run out of things to do, but I was certainly wrong. We did take a trip out to Ostia Antica, but otherwise spend our time in the city.

In no way do I feel that we have seen everything. It seems that around every corner there is some new interesting attraction and when you get jaded on that, simply sit down and watch people.

The folks on Fodors will supply you with many suggestions. Again,I think that you could indeed spend 30 days there without running out of interesting things to do.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 04:30 PM
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7 months in Rome would not be too much.

I had four entire months in Florence and did not see everything I wanted to.

The fear of staying too long in an amazing city like these is alien to me. Should you really feel the need for a change, a day trip can be organized spontaneously.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 07:18 PM
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My wife and I agree after several visits that Rome is not one of our favorite cities. If this is a first trip to Italy I think it would be a shame not to see one other city.

About 10 years ago we took a trip and spent two nights in Rome, three in Florence, and two in Venice before flying home. I would take that trip again in a heartbeat.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 07:40 PM
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I loved Rome but after 4 nights we rented a car, stopped at Ostia Antica (its the coolest archaeology site ever) then drove up to Tuscany and spent a week in a castle. For us, Rome was very stressful but there was so much there we wanted to see. I would love to go back and "finish up" or whatever. I feel like I didn't see everything but then I never would even in a month. Even the Vatican Museum and Cistine Chapel I don't feel like I saw enough of. It's like any big museum, you have to keep going back to see it all.
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Old Jan 11th, 2015, 11:20 PM
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Rome is not my favorite city.. but its still worth 7 full days.. BUT.. ( like I have had to.. twice.. ) are going when it will be roasting hot ,, and crowded..
Now.. on one hand you may think ,, maybe it would better to only spend a few days there and go somewhere else.. the problem with that reasoning ( to me) is that then you are trying to cram a lot into those few days.. in the heat and crowds..
Better to go for a week.. spend mornings touring sites.. and feel free to have leisurely afternoons out of the heat.. either in a café having a cool drink.. or napping.. then spend evenings out and about again.

Also.. a hotel .. with good air conditioning will keep you sane.. seriously.. I wouldn't bother trying to get an apartment at this late date.. plus more hotels have ac then apartments.

My stepmother late booked and got an apartment one year ( she goes often) .. but she couldn't get one with ac.
She said she slept on the tile floor for a few nights it was so hot.. funsy..
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Old Jan 12th, 2015, 08:10 AM
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We've stayed in Rome at least 7 times the last 12 years. not once was it less than a week. Agree with others that a week is perfect.
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Old Jan 14th, 2015, 06:56 AM
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We spent 7 wonderful days in Rome (plus a trip to Ostia Antica which is very close and a must) and we just scratched the surface. For museum/history buffs there's so much to see and there are other day trips which we didn't have time to do. Get a hotel with air conditioning and wear sturdy sandals or sports shoes because of the cobblestones. July is hot and you'll probably want to take a break in the afternoon so you can keep on going later in the evening/night.
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