3 Days in Rome
I can’t believe it has already been two years since Kyle and I spent 3 days in Rome. Today is a lazy Sunday, so I have been looking through old pictures and reminiscing about our travels. We saved up vacation time and money and spent two glorious weeks in Europe. The first stop of our European vacation was Rome. We allocated 3 days per city, so here’s how we spent our 3 days in Rome.
Getting To Rome
We hit the ground running on day 1, fresh off the plane with a whole day ahead of us. Rome is 6 hours ahead of us (Eastern time zone) so staying awake all day to beat jet lag kind of sucked. Ok, really sucked. There was a bit of culture shock that happened as I walked around the airport in Rome. This was a first for both of us, visiting a country where we don’t speak the language. We learned a few key phrases that were definitely helpful but it was still an overwhelming experience. Anyway, the airport seemed like a maze (maybe it was the jet lag or my brain was just not comprehending what the hell was going on) but we made it to the little store in the airport that sold the Roma Pass (public transit cards). An absolute MUST if you visit Rome. This card allows you to use unlimited public transportation for a set period of time. (72 hours, which was exactly what we needed!) There are two options to get into Rome from the airport (well, besides taxis), the train and shuttle bus. We opted for the shuttle bus because it was cheaper. There are a few different vendors at the transportation area of the airport to direct you where to go. We also took out some euros at the airport ATM. The currency transfer transaction fee is pretty high so try to estimate how much you’ll need to limit transactions. Not all the stores in Rome take cards, so it’s definitely a good idea to have some euros on hand.
So, anyway, we made it into Rome and met up with our AirBNB host to check into our apartment here. Loved our little apartment during our stay. Hotels are very expensive in Rome so staying in an AirBNB was a good financial choice. It was also really nice and super convenient.
The Colosseum is the #1 thing to see in Rome. We took a short 10 minute walk from our apartment over the to Colosseum. Walking around Rome is fun, the brick streets are beautiful, but after a while it can be a pain to walk on. So, pack good walking shoes! I actually ended up buying a nice, leather pair of boots because the shoes I packed were terrible. Anyway, The Colosseum. The Roma Pass we purchased earlier in the day also included two free museum entrances. I think there was also a special line for Roma Pass holders so we were able to get in very quickly. (Not sure how it would be otherwise but I think there was a pretty long line… so the point is to buy a Roma Pass.) The Colosseum was, of course, amazing, but it was also exactly what I expected- maybe I had too high of expectations to be in awe. We walked around for a while and took pictures. We then stopped by a little store and grabbed some pizza slices for lunch. Italian pizza is VERY different than American pizza. Good, just different. We checked out the Spanish Steps (nothing special) and the Trevi Fountain (AMAZING). Finished the day by having pasta and wine for dinner at Wanted. (Would NOT recommend, by the way. The food was pretty generic. So many better options.)
We spent day #2 exploring the Vatican City and it was absolutely amazing. Major trip highlight. First stop was the Vatican Museums. I highly encourage you to book your tickets online because the line was SO long otherwise. So, that’s what we did, and we happily walked to our own, very small line to enter at our designated time. The Vatican Museums are massive. It could easily take you all day to walk through it. We took about 3 hours and didn’t even see everything. There is a shortcut to go towards the Sistine Chapel, but there are so many other awesome things to see there that it would be a disservice to yourself to skip it all. The Sistine Chapel was really amazing to see. You’re not allowed to take pictures in there, so it was nice to just admire the beauty that Michelangelo created.
After the museum we walked over to St Peter’s Basilica. (Which is free to visit!) St Peter’s Basilica is the most beautiful place I have ever seen. Seriously. It was amazing. The light falling softly on works of art and the feeling in the entire basilica was so perfect. We walked around in awe, taking it all in. I think we both agreed it was one of our favorite things we saw during our trip, which we should have saved for last because we ended up comparing a lot of other places to it. St Peter’s Square was very beautiful as well and the perfect spot to take some pictures.
We headed back to our apartment and ate dinner at a local, family owned restaurant across the street called La Cicala E La Formica. The quality and taste of real Italian food and wine is just incredible. I love that they make everything from scratch and that the table gets a large glass pitcher of wine to share. The owner was so fun. He spoke very little English but was very friendly and even brought us free chocolates for dessert.
We started our last day in Rome by visiting the Pantheon, which was disappointing after seeing such amazing buildings and artwork the day before. The area around the Pantheon is very enjoyable to walk around. We grabbed some gelato and hung out at the Trevi Fountain again while we ate. I LOVE gelato. I swear, it is better than any ice-cream I have ever had. You must eat gelato if you are in Rome. I wish I had some right now.
We spent the afternoon exploring the Roman Forum area, which is located right next to the Colosseum. I think I enjoyed this area more than the Colosseum because there’s so much more to see. There are plenty of tour guides around but we just wandered on our own. I’d highly recommend checking out the Roman Forums. It gave me a glimpse of Roman culture back in the day. There’s a lot of walking involved but it’s worth it to see all the ruins. There are also good views of the city and the Colosseum.
For dinner we decided to go back to the same restaurant as the night before because it was so good. This time we ordered tiramisu for dessert and it was just incredible.
I fell in love with the city after spending 3 days in Rome. This experience was so much better than I would’ve imagined. The history is what originally drew me in… Rome is a place everyone should experience at least once in their life. However, the culture is what left an impression on me. I love that people spend time eating dinner together and being engaged. That means eating amazing food, having conversations, and not rushing through it. Really living in the moment.
Rome, I hope to meet you again one day.