We have an expression that "Rome wasn't built in a day." In english, this is a way for us to express that great things take time. The same is also true when it comes to actually exploring Rome in one day as well. I know people usually recommend spending two, or even better, three days to see everything that this city has to offer. Due to our travel plans we only had one full day to see as much of this magnificent city as we could. This is my second trip to this awesome city, so I am here to give you a few tips on how you can make the most of your one day. This is a long day and there is tons of walking, so bring your walking shoes and make sure you make plenty of Gelato stops.
We stayed close to the bus station so it was easy for us to jump on a bus and get to the other side of the city. Bus passes can be purchased at the train station and almost all tobacco shops. Our first stop was one of the most famous sites in the entire world... The Vatican.
THE VATICAN & ST. PETER'S BASILICA
Start your day out early at The Vatican. The lines can be lengthy to get in to The Vatican Museums so it's a good idea to get there early. You do not want to spend precious time waiting in lines. We bought "skip-the-line" passes to insure that we got in at a certain time. These passes are a bit more expensive, however I found them to be worth it because it was easier to plan our schedule knowing exactly what time we would be getting in. Now let's be honest... I know you can spend an entire day just exploring all that The Vatican museums have to offer. We set a timer for ourselves and were intentional on what exactly we wanted to see. There are helpful signs within the museum that indicate which paths are shorter and which are a bit longer.
After our visit to The Vatican and St. Peter's Basilica we hopped back on a bus and made our way towards the center of town. We spent the afternoon strolling the streets of Rome and taking it all in.
THE SPANISH STEPS
One of the most iconic staircases in the entire world is located in the heart of Rome. These steps have been undergoing extensive restoration, so unfortunately the steps were under construction when we were visiting. Even though I was a little bummed we couldn't climb the stairs, the repairs actually made it a great opportunity to get an unobstructed view of how grand and beautiful they are!
On your stroll through the city center be sure to stop by Giolitti Gelato. This is the oldest gelato shop in Rome. Upon entering you will need to prepay at the register up front and then walk back with your ticket to select your flavor! I chose strawberry and pineapple. Yummm!
The iconic Trevi Fountain is located in the heart of Rome and is a sight to see. Be sure to throw in a coin over your shoulder for good luck! The money goes to a good cause!
The Pantheon was built as an ancient Roman temple for the gods. It is one of the most well preserved roman buildings and they still allow you to walk in and explore. This was my second time visiting and I was still blown away at how grand it was!
After an afternoon walking the streets of Rome, stop, have dinner, and rest your feet! I would recommend seeing the rest after the sun goes down.
ROMAN FORUM AND THE COLOSSEUM
We scheduled a tour of the Roman Forum and the Colosseum in the evening. We were able to see The Colosseum after hours and I cannot recommend this enough. We did not have to fight crowds and since we traveled in September it was still very warm. It was so much more enjoyable walking around while it was a little cooler outside. We were also able to see a few projections onto the buildings to get an idea of what those buildings would have looked like. So cool!!
Have you been to Rome? Tell me about your favorite site!