Rome is one of the most touristic cities in the world and rightly so – there is a lot to see, do and eat there and when time is limited and the attractions are numerous, we at Simple Italy like to be organized and plan the itinerary in advance. Such planning will save you a lot of money and allow you to enjoy major attractions even during the busy periods of the year.
How do you enjoy a week in Rome without feeling like you’ve “used it up” + tips for reducing costs? All the details are in front of you.
A trip to Rome – important tips
The first and most important thing is to purchase your tickets online before your visit to the destination. At the very least, this will save you a long wait in line at the ticket offices, and in the best case, you will even be able to enjoy various discounts and promotions.
Another option, which can be in addition to or instead of, is to purchase urban-cultural benefit cards, such as the Roma Pass belonging to the Municipality of Rome in combination with the public transport companies. Before purchasing it, it is strongly recommended to check which attractions it provides free/discount entry to and whether it is at all relevant for you.
The Rome Pass card will allow you to enjoy free entry to two museums (the Bilotti Museum, the Museum of the Roman Republic, the Napoleon Museum, etc.) and free travel on public transportation during the time the card is valid (within the city itself without trips to or from the airport). In addition, you will receive discounts for additional museums, a medical insurance service for tourists, exemption from tolls at some sites, a free audio guide and more.
Itinerary for a week in Rome
Day 1: The places where it all started
We will start the first day of our trip to Rome with a visit to historical places that are on the “must do” list – sites that every tourist who is visiting Rome for the first time must visit, those that allow you to glimpse the impressive past of the ancient city.
In order to get an impression of the city and enjoy a spectacular panoramic view, we will start the day at the Capitoline Hill and the Capitoline Museums named after it, which contain valuable works of art that should not be missed, such as the statue of the she-wolf nursing the two founding brothers of the city.
From there you will go down to the famous Venice Square and choose one of the charming cafes or local restaurants for a light brunch break (or early lunch). This is a perfect place to stop for a moment, watch the passers-by and soak up some of the local atmosphere.
After that, you will continue your journey towards what was the center of ancient Rome, aka the Roman Forum where meetings were held, speeches were made, trials were held, markets were held and also quite a few gladiator fights and from there you can visit the nearby Palatine Hill which, like the previous hill, is one of the seven hills of ancient Rome.
We will end the first day of the trip at the Colosseum, which was the legendary amphitheater of the Roman Empire where the city’s nobility gathered alongside the curious and watched animal fights, gladiator fights and more. Today this site is among the new wonders of the world.
Day 2: Excursion to Tivoli
In order not to feel that the week is too full of activities, we arranged the trip so that you spend one day in Rome and one day on a trip outside the city. You will then spend the second day in beautiful Tivoli, which is located at the foot of the Apennines and is known for the magnificent and ancient villas that are there.
Villa Adriana – the remains of a beautiful building from the 1st century AD that was built at the request of Emperor Hadrian to be used by him and his family members (and their employees of course). In addition to the remains of Habana, there are also the remains of an ancient cave and a pool that was considered spectacularly beautiful in its heyday.
Villa Gregoriana – this time it is a relatively new villa which dates back to the 19th century AD and visiting it is considered unique mainly due to the waterfall that is located next to it and the magical gardens that surround it and are a wonderful place to walk, especially with children.
Villa de Este – one of the most beautiful and well-preserved palaces in the region, which attracts crowds of visitors especially thanks to the special fountains found in its territory and the water pools at its feet. This is a spectacular example of the building style during the Renaissance and Italian landscape architecture.
Day 3: following the squares and fountains of Rome
The third day for the trip and the second day for a tour of Rome which we will dedicate to some of the iconic symbols of the city, namely the famous fountains and the impressive squares found all over the city. Most of these buildings are, of course, in the historic center of Rome and therefore you can walk between them without needing the public transport service.
Piazza del Popolo – a famous square which is also known for the famous sites located in its territory – the Church of Santa Maria del Popolo, the Church of Santa Maria di Mircelli and more. From there we will continue to Piazza di Spagna – which you will reach via the main street Via del Babuino where there are quite a few local galleries and boutique shops. Next to this square are also the Spanish Steps, which in themselves are a site that must be visited.
Next in line is the Trevi Fountain – the most famous fountain in Rome. A wonderful example of baroque architecture which is at the center of local legends and therefore attracts many visitors. You can reach the square through the colorful city alleys or through the main roads Via dei Condotti and Via del Corso where designer shops, restaurants and historic buildings.
Last but not least for this tour is Piazza Navona and the Four Rivers Fountain where you can also stop for a lunch break as there are quite a few excellent restaurants in the area, although not particularly cheap. In the square is the impressive fountain alongside others, most of them designed by Bernini and in the spirit of the marine environment.
Near the last point are other tourist centers such as the Rome Museum, the Pantheon, the Sculpture Museum, the Campo d’Fiori market and more. As for the latter – it is true that it closes in the afternoon, but in the evening it turns into a lively nightlife center (highly recommended!).
Day 4: Excursion to Ostia
Ancient Ostia is one of the most special suburbs of Rome, an ancient port city located at the mouth of the Tiber and its proximity to the city makes it a recommended destination for a visit. This is a city that was a central part of the local history and was used, among other things, as a trade center and as a fortress and today it is a historical site of great importance due to the buildings and remains that remained there from the time of ancient Rome to the Middle Ages.
You can build the route in the old city yourself according to the tourist map that can be found in every kiosk, because it has quite a few historical sites that are mostly within walking distance of each other and in the end it’s all a matter of taste. After the tour or during it you can stop at the port and enjoy a meal or a refreshing drink, or even continue to one of the resorts located on the coastline.
A tip from us: if you want and plan in advance, you can reserve a place to stay in one of these resorts and spend the evening in one of the most lively and pleasant places in Italy.
Day 5: Kiryat Vatican
The smallest country in the world is considered one of the most touristic, famous and important places in the world. The Pope lives there and the gardens belonging to him are also located there, and it greatly influences the population of Catholics in all corners of the world.
Among the tourist attractions that must be visited during a stay in the Vatican you will find (not necessarily in this order) St. Peter’s Square (designed by Bernini) and St. Peter’s Basilica where St. Peter is also buried, the Vatican garden belonging to the Pope and the entrance to it is only through a guided tour and of course the Vatican museums in them One of the most important art collections in the world.
Day 6: Foray into Orbito
Last but not least among the forays outside the capital city we will visit the picturesque Orbito whose landscapes look like they were taken from a cartoon postcard, so at the very least you will get some particularly photogenic pictures. Please note that although it is a site relatively remote from others, it can also be reached by public transport – a journey of about an hour and a quarter by train departing from Termini station.
In Orvieto, there is a volcanic landscape next to extensive green areas, beautiful historical buildings and archaeological remains that tell the story of one of the most beautiful cities in Italy. In addition to these, it is recommended not to miss the visit to St. Peter’s Well and the Etruscan caves, which are considered particularly fascinating and are a great place to visit with children.
In the city itself, there are quite a few great shops, restaurants and cafes, and if you want to spend a whole day visiting the place, it is recommended to also visit one of the family wineries located near the city.
Day 7: Shopping and rest
Since this is one of the biggest fashion powers in the world, the last day we will devote to rest and therapeutic activity and as we know, there is nothing more relaxing than pre-flight shopping. An excellent opportunity to purchase the latest fashion items, local souvenirs and gifts for all your dear ones left at home.
The most recommended shopping areas in Rome are the famous boulevards Via dei Condotti, Via Del Curso and Via Cola di Rienzo where you will find all the brand stores including luxury brands and local designer stores and of course Piazza Navona and the Trastevere district with galleries and boutique shops.
If you are more into outlets, there are also a few such as the Castel Romano shopping center located in the suburbs of the city, but the prices are worth the trip, and if you want to spend time in a huge mall, Galleria Commerciale Porta di Roma is at your disposal.
Market lovers will also enjoy plenty of great places to get rid of some rustlers, such as Rome’s Porta Portese Flea Market (note, the market is only open on Sundays), the city’s most famous market Campo de’ Fiori (mainly food) and a market mainly for vintage goods And second hand Rigattieri Per Hobby (also open on Sundays only).
In conclusion, visiting Rome can be fun and enjoyable even without spending all your time in the vibrant city. In fact, the right combination of the historical sites, museums and activities offered by the capital city with refreshing forays outside the city are what will make your visit to the land of the boot unforgettable. who knows? Maybe you’ll fall in love with one of the nearby destinations and book another vacation.