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LaurenP Aug 10th, 2010 05:11 AM

Rome Itinerary (3 nights) Need help!
Hello. I am working on my 2.5 day intinerary in Rome. I think it's reasonable but please provide your input and let me know if I am missing anything. Help with restaurants would be greatly appreciated! We would like to keep it to no more than $100/pp. Our hotel is close to the Trevi Fountain...

Day 1 - Getting settled
Car from Positano to Naples train station/Train Naples-Rome
Lunch TBD (near Pantheon)
Trevi Fountain
Piazza Navona
Dinner TBD near Piazza Navona

Day 2 - Sightseeing
Vatican/ St. Peters/ Sistine Chapel
Lunch TBD
Roman Forum/ Colesseum
San Pietro in Vincoli - Moses
Piazza Venezia
Dinner TBD

Day 3 - Shopping/Exploring
Spanish Steps/ Via Condotti/ Via del Corso
Lunch TBD near Spanish Steps
Villa Borghese Gardens/ Pincio Hill
Campo de Fiori
Dinner TBD in Trastevere

My boyfriend and I have not been to Italy so please keep that in mind. Thanks!

LowCountryIslander Aug 10th, 2010 05:28 AM


Your itinerary looks reasonable to me. Here are a few suggestions:

Lunch near the Pantheon you may want to try Armando al Pantheon at Salita dei Crescenzi, 31. If you are standing in front of the Pantheon with your back to the front of the builing the restaurant will be on the street to your left. I've enjoyed a good solid Roman meal there last year. The website is:

You may have time that first day to see more than you have listed, and if you enjoy churches Santa Maria Sopra Minerva is just around the corner from the Pantheon...there is an elephant obelisk in front.

For your second day in order to see the Sistine Chapel you must go through the Vatican Museums. Ristorante Arlu on Borgo Pio, 135 is in the Vatican area and I had a delicious lunch there a couple years ago. Small dining room, but there is outdoor seating. Seemed to be a very local crowd when we were there. Here is the website:

I have written several trip on my recent trips to Rome in 2007, 2008 and 2009. If you click on my screen name you will find them listed under my trip reports.

RJD Aug 10th, 2010 05:29 AM

Tires me out looking at the list. Day 2 is the most troubling since there are long lines almost everywhere you want to go that day. Best advice--be flexible and don't be too unhappy if you have to modify some of your plans. On our recent trip we planned one major activity,like the Vatican, each day and left time for relaxing and getting the feel of Roma from a cafe seat.

Alexgadgetman Aug 10th, 2010 06:02 AM


Please keep in mind that the colosseum is open late (till about 7:30pm) - and can be visited around 5pm if you wanted to avoid the massive queues a bit. Alternatively (and rather cleverly) you can spend an extra 4Euro when you enter to get an audioguide (a good idea seeing how the colosseum is just a pile of old rocks...) and possibly avoid the queues.

I should probably explain that - there are 3 queue lines.
The left side, for prebooked groups, the middle for those wanting group or audio guides (empty when I was there) and the right hand line the normal entry queue (about 45 min when i was there).

So my advice for that is to arrive and try and either join a group or get an audioguide = save you some time. Obviously if you wish to trawl through the other sites (I believe the colosseum ticket is also one for the ruins around it?) then arrive a bit earlier.

For the vatican - the queue to get into the cathedral is about 45 minutes in the morning, the queue to get into the actual vatican museums is around 45 min as well (at least). It should be noted that to get into the Sistine chapel will take you another half hour as well, you have to walk through loads of other places first, and the actual room itself is just a nice roof with a few thousand tourists taking pictures... But for some reason around midday (when I left the vatican museums to get lunch) there was no queue and people were just walking in.

Be prepared to face numerous people in both locations going 'do you speak english'. Most likely wanting to sell you a tour. Just say 'non' to get them to move on. Also be prepared for beggars around the streets as well.

I would agree with RJD about the planning of one major activity then doing smaller ones off the cuff.

When i was in Rome I covered pretty much every central location in two days - by planning to do the colosseum one day and the vatican the next, as you can wander from the colosseum up the (Via Del Corso?) and take in many of the attractions along the route (or in the other direction).

Lexma90 Aug 10th, 2010 06:24 AM

I, also, would put the Vatican activities on a different day than the ancient Rome (Forum, Colosseum, etc.) sites. You could visit ancient Rome on your arrival day.

And as I recall, the market at Campo d'Fiori is at its most active in the morning, so you might want to rearrange the schedule for that day.

kybourbon Aug 10th, 2010 08:46 AM

I would not drive into Naples train station to drop the car. I would avoid driving in Naples if at all possible. Why not drop it somewhere on the route to Rome and train the rest of the way? Another option might be to drop it in Salerno (close to Positano) and train from there to Rome.

Your schedule will depend on the days of the week you are in Rome. The Vatican Museums are closed on Sunday and the Borghese is closed on Monday.

nytraveler Aug 10th, 2010 09:00 AM

IMHO Day 2 wil actualy take you 2 full days if you really want to see anything. Vatican Museums are huge - and even ifyou just want to see the Sistime chapel you will have waiting lines, time to get around the whole city to St Peter's and all there is to do there - unless you just want a 10 minute glimpse.

The Colosseum can be sen fairly qucikly - an hour or so - but the Forum is huge and can take most of a day if you hae any interst in ancient Rome.

bardo1 Aug 10th, 2010 09:05 AM

<I>Day 1 ... Dinner TBD near Piazza Navona</I>

I cannot recommend this place highly enough. Wonderful food/wine/service/ambience. Some of the best cooking in Rome on one of the most charming streets in Rome - Via Coronari - just off Piazza Navona. Get an outdoor table if possible and if the weather is nice.

ssander Aug 10th, 2010 09:21 AM

If you are near Santa Prassede church (via di Santa Prassede about 1/2 block south of S. Maria Maggiore church), don't miss it. Best mosaics in Rome.


LaurenP Aug 10th, 2010 10:17 AM

OK I think I will rearrange the itinerary and move Ancient Rome to Day 3. While I do not think we will be spending an entire day at the Vatican Museums, I do think we will better off having some time to relax and explore later in the day.

Thank you for the restaurant suggestions.

A few other resturants I have read are good:
Da Tornini il Governo Vecchio
Taverna Dei Fori Imperiali
Taverna Romana
Antico Arco

Can anyone advise on any of these? More suggestions are welcome too!

Danielle811 Aug 10th, 2010 11:03 AM

A restaurant recommendation for your lunch near the Pantheon is Ristorante Enoteca Corsi at Via del Gesu 87. They are only open for lunch (and closed on Sundays), but this was our favorite meal during our trip in February.

charnees Aug 10th, 2010 12:09 PM

About the lines at the Colosseum: Go first to the entrance to the Palatine Hill and buy your tickets there -- they give you admission to all three Roman sights, and the lines are much shorter at the Palatine. Then go over to the Colosseum and keep to the left line, since you already have your ticket. Then you can go on into the Forum afterward.

darby00 Aug 11th, 2010 10:01 AM

I second the comment about the Campo de Fiori, though it depends on what you want out of your experience there. If you want to experience the market, then be there in the morning, as it really slows down by early afternoon (or earlier). If you want to experience a relatively rowdy younger crowd having a good time, then go there at night.

It's quite touristy, but my wife and I always enjoyed the Magnolia, a cafe right on the Campo. We found ourselves craving hummus (I know, we're in Rome....), and the manager at Magnolia, who grew up in the eastern US but is of Middle Eastern decent and is an Italian citizen (a diverse guy!) makes great hummus!

Also, after dinner close to Piazza Navona, head to Frigidarium, just down Via del Governo Vecchio off Navona. It's my favorite gelato in Roma.

LaurenP Aug 11th, 2010 01:13 PM

New Itinerary

Day 1 - Getting settled
Hired car from Positano to Naples train station/Train Naples-Rome
Lunch TBD (Amando al Pantheon/ Ristorante Enoteca Corsi)
Trevi Fountain
Piazza Navona
Dinner TBD near Piazza Navona (Ristorante Sangallo)

Day 2 - Vatican
Vatican/ St. Peters/ Sistine Chapel (tour booked)
Lunch TBD (Arlu)
Spanish Steps/Shopping
Villa Borghese Gardens/ Pincio Hill
Dinner TBD

Day 3 - Ancient Rome
Campo de Fiori early
Ancient Rome
Lunch TBD
Via del Corso back to hotel
Dinner TBD in Trastevere

annhig Aug 11th, 2010 01:34 PM

hi lauren,

lol- your day two is still VERY heavy, and Day 1 is very light, even for a first, half, day. you could easliy fit the campo dei fiori into day 1, plus as many churches as you happen to walk past - there is a gem in virtually every one. or the galleria doria pamphillji - fabulous paintings and hardly any visitors.

on Day 2, I would seriously consider jettisoning the Borghese. yes, heresy i know, but after the Vatican it is highly unlikely that you wil lwant to spend another 2 hours on your feet going round a gallery. leave it til next time! instead, either go up the dome of st. peter's, or walk along to Castel san angelo and enjoy almost the same view from the top. then cross the bridge which leads to the corso vittorio emmanuale, and head left into the little streets that lead off to the left. from here you can turn left along the via coronari, or go towards the piazza navona, or just wander around exploring. we spent a week in an apartment near here, and never tired of just wandering about. specialist shops, bars, cafes, and restaurants abound.

or head over into Trastevere, and see the mosaics in the crypt of Santa Cecilia.

Day 3 - after Roman Rome, instead of trastevere, go up to San pietro in vincoli, or down to san clemente, san prassede, etc. etc.

have a great trip!

catherinehaas Aug 11th, 2010 01:43 PM

New itinerary is better. Be careful in Naples and on the train from Naples to Rome. Pickpocketers I have heard abound.

There is a wonderful place that we go to each time we are in Rome near Piazza Navona for dinner. It might be a bit more than your budget but that depends on what you get. Hostaria Costanza's.
The food and service was superb.

When you are near Campo di Fiori PLEASE make sure that you go to Giolitti's for gelato. OMG!!! To die for!

daveesl Aug 11th, 2010 03:24 PM

Best gelato in Rome is at Della Palma, about 2 blocks north of the Pantheon.

bookchick Aug 11th, 2010 03:53 PM

Pierluigi is very good, although not cheap. Both service and food, however, are excellent. From the outside, it doesn't look that large, but it's a good size. You may be able to get a table outside and do some people-watching, but the night I went, it rained, so I was inside. (Still very nice.) Because it was still pouring rain, they tried to phone for a taxi for me, and had difficulty getting through on the phone. A waiter, however, went outside and hailed a cab for me---I call that great customer service!

For dinner in Trastevere, you may want to try Sabatini.

Buon Viaggio & Buon Appetito,

dugi_otok Aug 11th, 2010 05:45 PM

On day one I would do Rick Steves "Night Walk Across Rome" Campo de'Fiori-Piazza Navona-Pantheon-Piazza Capranica-Piazza Colonna-Trevi Fountain-Spanish Steps or better yet
the Through Eternity "Rome At Twilight Among the Piazzas and Fountains" tour(2.5 hrs) Spanish Steps-Trevi Fountain-Hadrain's Temple-Propaganda Fide-Piazza Navona-Campo de'Fiori-Piazza Farnese-Piazza S. Eustachio_Pantheon.
These are great introductions to Rome. Also choose from Giolitti or Della Palma for gelato, both near the Pantheon. There is also Tre Scalini for tartufo death-by-chocolate ice cream (Piazza Navona-the Through Eternity guide treated us).

bardo1 Aug 12th, 2010 04:30 AM


New itinerary looks about perfect.

Here is a self-guided walk you can modify and incorporate into <b>DAY 1</b> walk. It includes some highlights that you may not know about (like Via Giulia).

I suggest you do it (or your own version) in REVERSE - #29 to #3. Restaurant Sangallo is near #4 on Via Coronari shown on map below.

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