view of two rounded domes in rome how many days

How Many Days in Rome is Enough? Our Ultimate Itinerary Has the Answer

Curious about how many days in Rome is enough? I’ve got the answer for you!

The eternal city of Rome, where history, art, culture and food converge to create an unforgettable experience. With so much to see and do in this magnificent city, it’s hard to decide how many days in Rome are enough for a complete Roman adventure. From the iconic Colosseum and Vatican City to the charming piazzas and quaint alleys, each corner of Rome will leave you spellbound with its beauty and charm.

Whether you’re planning a romantic getaway or a family trip, I’ve got you covered! In this article, I’ll help you discover how many days to see Rome is needed to explore all that the city has to offer. I’ve been to Rome a couple of times, staying between 4 and 9 days. As such, I have a good sense of how many days to spend in Rome and what you can see in 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 days in Rome. That’s why I’ve created the ultimate itinerary that is completely customizable to fit your travel plans. The number of days needed in Rome is infinite as there’s always something amazing to discover.

So pack your bags and get ready for an exciting journey through Rome’s rich heritage!

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How Many Days in Rome Is Enough?

view of rooftops in rome how many days

How many days do you need in Rome? That’s a tough question to answer. Rome is a city that requires time to fully appreciate its beauty, history and culture. While it’s possible to see the main attractions in just a few days, I highly recommend spending 4 to 5 days in Rome to truly immerse yourself in all that this incredible city has to offer.

No matter how long in Rome you decide to stay, book everything in advance to make the best use of your time. There is no lull period in Rome, there are always tourists visiting the city. So, purchasing skip-the-line tickets will be key to saving time, not to mention your enjoyment! I will only the top-rated and most cost-effective ones to book with.

Rome in a Nutshell: Is 2 Days in Rome Enough?

How long do you need in Rome – 2 days is tight. But if that’s all you got, let me help you make the most of it with this two days in Rome itinerary. And, if you only have 1 day in Rome, whether it’s your first time or a return trip – choose any of the “Day” outlines for the 2, 3, 4 or 5 day itineraries based on your interest.

Day 1: Iconic Landmarks in Rome

Morning

ancient theatre in how many days in rome is enough
Colosseum

Start your day early with a visit to the Colosseum – one of Rome’s most iconic landmarks. Take a guided tour or explore on your own; either way, make sure you allow plenty of time to take in the impressive architecture and learn about its fascinating history. Next up, head over to Palatine Hill and the Roman Forum. These ancient ruins offer a glimpse into life during ancient times and are definitely worth exploring.

Grab your skip-the-line entrance ticketscheck prices and book your dates

You’re likely going to need to refuel. Here are the best restaurants close to the Colosseum that I recommend (and have tried!).

  • Alle Carrette – great pizza (maybe the best in Rome)
  • Urbana 47 – great selection of all the Italian classic dishes with a modern vibe

Afternoon

fountain of marble statutes in how many days do you need in rome
Trevi Fountain

In the afternoon, take a walk through Rome’s Centro Storico to visit some of the most notable sites. Start at the Spanish Steps, a grand staircase that leads up to the Trinita dei Monti church. Next, head to the iconic Trevi Fountain, where you can toss a coin and make a wish of returning to Rome.

From there, visit the stunning ancient temple that still stands today as a marvel of Roman engineering, the Pantheon. After admiring the Pantheon’s impressive dome, continue on to Piazza Navona, a grand public square with ornate fountains (with dei quattro fiumi being the most beautiful) and stunning Baroque architecture. Finally, end your walk at the bustling Campo de’ Fiori, a vibrant square filled with food stalls, cafes, and one of the best markets in Rome. This walk is a great way to experience Rome’s history, culture, and beauty all in one afternoon.

Evening

cobbled street, plants and colourful buildings in rome how many days
Trastevere Neighbourhood

Spend your evening wandering through the cobbled streets of Trastevere – one of Rome’s trendiest neighbourhoods. With its charming boutiques, cafes, restaurants and bars this is the perfect area of Rome to enjoy an aperitif, dinner and romantic stroll. If you are wondering where to eat in Trastevere, check out my full list of the best Travestevere restaurants.

Day 2: One Day in Vatican City

bridge with church dome in one day in vatican city

If you have two days to spend in Rome, then one of them should undoubtedly be devoted to exploring the Vatican, the smallest state in the world, and one of the most significant cultural and religious centers of the Western world.

This city state may be small in size, but it’s big in the number of things to see and do. Don’t underestimate how much time to spend here, as it’s a bit overwhelming how much there is to see. Your one day in Vatican City will need a skip-the-line ticket to the Vatican to see the following:

  • St Peter’s Square
  • The Vatican Museums (26 in total!)
  • Sistine Chapel
  • St Peter’s Basilica Dome
  • Vatican Gardens

The Vatican skip-the-line entrance ticketcheck prices and book your dates

river, bridge and round castle in how many days in rome
Castel Sant’ Angelo and Bridge of Angels

Enjoy a late lunch and stroll the streets in the neighbourhood of Borgo. Followed by visiting Castel Sant’ Angelo and Bridge of Angels. End your full day in Vatican City with dinner, and a stroll along the Tiber River. To help plan your visit here, including restaurant recommendations, be sure to check out my full guide to One Day in Vatican City.

Get our skip-the-line tickets for Castel Sant’ Angelocheck prices and book your dates

The Best of Rome: 3 Days in Rome

mountain view church dome in how many days in rome is enough

If you’re trying to decide how many days should you spend in Rome – 3 is a safe bet, even for first-timers. You can rest assured that you’ll be able to see most of the top sites in Rome in 3 days at a bit more leisurely pace than in 2 days.

Day 1: Ancient Rome + Monti Neighbourhood

Start with some of the most iconic sights in the city – the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill.

Take your time visiting the amphitheatre that’s over 2,000 years old and is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Rome. After you’ve explored the Colosseum, take a stroll through the Roman Forum. The Forum was once the heart of ancient Rome and is a sprawling complex of ruins that includes temples, government buildings, and public spaces. From the Roman Forum, head up to Palatine Hill. This is the place where Rome was founded, and it’s home to some of the oldest ruins in the city. The views from Palatine Hill are also stunning, and you can see much of the city from here.

Head to Basilica di Santa Maria in Aracoeli. This beautiful 13th-century church is located on Capitoline Hill and is known for its stunning frescoes, intricate marble floors, and ornate altar. It’s a peaceful oasis in the middle of a bustling city.

Next, make your way to the Altar of the Fatherland. This is a monument that was built to honour Victor Emmanuel II, the first king of a united Italy. The monument is an imposing structure that dominates the skyline of Rome. And the panoramic views of the city are incredible!

cobbled street with buildings, people in how many days to see rome
Monti Neighbourhood

After a day of exploring the ancient sights of Rome, it’s time to discover one of the city’s hippest neighbourhoods – Monti. This area is known for its trendy bars, restaurants, and boutiques. You can grab a coffee at one of the many cafes, browse the shops and enjoy a leisurely aperitif and dinner at a local trattoria.

Some restaurants that I’ve tried and recommend include – Rocco Ristorante or Ai Tre Scalini and Urbana 47.

Day 2: Iconic Landmarks + Trastevere Neighbourhood

Start at Piazza di Spagna, one of Rome’s most iconic squares at the bottom of the Spanish Steps. Climb the Spanish Steps and enjoy the stunning view from the top before visiting Trinita dei Monti church.

Next, head to the Trevi Fountain, one of Rome’s most famous landmarks. Legend has it that if you throw a coin into the fountain with your right hand over your left shoulder, you’ll return to Rome one day.

Our next destination is the Pantheon one of Rome’s best-preserved ancient buildings and is famous for its stunning dome. Located just across from the Pantheon is Piazza della Rotonda, a charming square lined with cafes and restaurants.

fountain of statues in how many days in rome is enough
Piazza Navona

From there, we’ll continue on to Piazza Navona, another beautiful square in the heart of Rome. This square is home to three stunning fountains, including the famous Fountain of the Four Rivers. Take a break to enjoy a gelato and soak in the atmosphere of this historic square.

basket of oranges and garlic at rome market
Campo de’ Fiori Market

Next, we’ll head to Campo de’ Fiori, a bustling market square filled with vendors selling everything from fresh produce to handmade crafts. From there, we’ll cross the Tiber River into the charming Trastevere neighbourhood.

fountain with church in how many days to spend in rome
Basilica of Our Lady in Trastevere

Spend the rest of your day and evening getting lost in the maze of narrow cobblestone streets full of colourful buildings. Be sure to visit the Basilica of Our Lady in Trastevere which sits on the beautiful Piazza di Santa Maria.

Your day ends here where you can enjoy a traditional Roman dinner at one of the best Trastevere restaurants. Sample classic dishes like cacio e pepe or amatriciana, and wash it down with a glass of local wine.

Day 3: Vatican City

Spend the last day of your 3 days in Rome in Vatican City. The same itinerary as Day 2 of 2 days in Rome is recommended (set forth above). Check out the full description of what to see, do and where to eat in my one day in Vatican City guide. Don’t forget to book your skip-the-line entry tickets to the sites of the Vatican.

Experience the Magic of Rome: 4 Days in Rome

Follow the 3-day itinerary from above, and then add this additional day 4.

Day 4: Rome’s Hidden Treasures

large plane trees at park in how many days in rome do you need
Villa Borghese

On the final day of this 4-day Rome itinerary, it’s time to explore some of the city’s lesser-known treasures. Start your day by visiting Villa Borghese, one of Rome’s most famous parks and gardens. The park is home to Borghese Gallery, a beautiful art collection and museum. Another highlight is the picturesque lake where you can rent a paddle boat. Take a leisurely stroll through the park ending at Terrazza del Pincio which offers a stunning viewpoint of Rome.

Hidden gem alert: if you love seeking out places that are off-the-beaten path and architecture you may want to add a visit to Rome’s best kept secret neighbourhood called Quartiere Coppede.

From Terrazza del Pincio, walk down the hill to Piazza del Popolo, a large public square that’s home to the twin churches of Santa Maria dei Miracoli and Santa Maria in Montesanto. Soak up the lively atmosphere with gelato.

ancient ruins in how many days in rome is enough
Jewish Quarter

From there, follow the Tiber River to the Jewish Quarter, one of Rome’s oldest and most historic neighbourhoods. The area is known for its narrow streets and traditional Jewish restaurants. This is a great spot to enjoy a leisurely lunch. Try any of these and you won’t be disappointed: Nonna Betta, or Ba’ Ghetto, or Su Ghetto.

After exploring the Jewish Quarter, make your way to Aventine Hill, one of Rome’s seven hills. Along the way be sure to admire some of the notable bridges along the Tiber River – Ponte Garibaldi, Ponte Fabricio, Ponte Cestio.

fountain of man carving on wall in how many days in rome is enough
Aventine Hill

At Aventine Hill, you’ll find the stunning Giardino degli Aranci (Orange Garden), a peaceful oasis that offers panoramic views of the city. This is a popular sunset-watching spot if you time it right. You can also visit the nearby Basilica di Santa Sabina, one of Rome’s oldest and most beautiful churches. One last spot to check out is Buco della serratura dell’Ordine di Malta, otherwise known as the Aventine keyhole which has a direct view of St Paul’s Basilica in Vatican City.

Finally, end your day with a traditional Roman dinner at one of the city’s many trattorias or osterias. These family-run restaurants serve classic dishes like spaghetti alla carbonara, saltimbocca alla romana, and tiramisu. Here are some recommended ones to try that are in this area: Agustarello a Testaccio, or Piatto Romano, or Taverna Volpetti.

Rome and Beyond: 5 Days in Rome

city rooftop view in rome how many days

Follow the 4-day itinerary from above, and then add this additional day 5 and take a break from Rome and explore some of the surrounding areas. There are several fantastic day trip options available, each with its own unique attractions and experiences. Here are a few suggestions for you to choose from.

Pompeii

Located just a few hours south of Rome, the ancient city of Pompeii is a fascinating glimpse into the past. It’s one of Italy’s most famous archaeological sites that is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The city was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD and remained buried under ash and pumice for centuries. Today, you can explore the remarkably preserved ruins, including houses, temples, and theatres.

Amalfi Coast

If you’re looking for stunning scenery and charming coastal towns, the Amalfi Coast is a perfect choice. The coastline stretches along the Tyrrhenian Sea, offering breathtaking views of cliffs, beaches, and turquoise waters. You can visit towns like Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello, each with its own unique charm and attractions.

Naples

Just an hour south of Rome by train, Naples is a bustling city with a rich history and culture. It’s known for its delicious pizza, lively street markets, and impressive museums, including the National Archaeological Museum, which houses many artifacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum.

Orvieto

For a taste of medieval Italy, head to the hilltop town of Orvieto, located about an hour north of Rome. The town is famous for its impressive Gothic cathedral, stunning views, and charming streets lined with artisanal shops and cafes.

Tuscany

Even visiting Tuscany for the day is possible from Rome. From hilltop villages and wine tours to Tuscan cities like Florence and Siena, it’s all possible with either a group or private tour. For a bit of inspiration, check out these 10 best tours to Tuscany from Rome.

Where to Stay in Rome

pink stucco hotel with chairs in rome how many days

With so much to see and do, choosing the right accommodation can make a big difference in the quality of your Rome trip. Fortunately, Rome offers a wide range of options for every budget and preference, from luxurious five-star hotels to cozy boutique hotels and budget-friendly hostels. Whether you want to stay in the heart of the historic center or in a trendy neighbourhood, here are a few top-rated hotels in each neighbourhood.

Affordable luxury:

  • The Fifteen Keys – a super stylish boutique hotel in the Monti neighbourhood
  • The Hoxton – UK’s stylish chain hotel is now in Rome in the historic city centre
  • Horti 14 Borgo Trastevere – a stylish boutique hotel that straddles Trastevere and historic Centro Rome

Luxury:

  • Sentho Roma – is in a restored palazzo in the heart of Rome’s Monti neighbourhood with only 17 rooms and personalized service
  • Hotel Vilòn (Small Luxury Hotels of the World brand) – a mansion turned boutique hotel with 18 rooms with a contemporary design with a destination cocktail bar, in a secret spot right next to Palazzo Borghese (close to Trevi Fountain and Villa Borghese).
  • Aleph Rome Hotel – palatial luxury all the way with its creamy white façade, ornate balconies, and amenities you would expect to find in this 5-star hotel Hilton chain near the Trevi fountain

FAQ: Rome How Many Days

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What is the best month to visit Rome?

The best month to visit Rome is generally April, May, September, and October when the weather is mild, crowds are smaller, and prices are lower.

How long do you need in Rome?

To see the major attractions and get a feel for the city, you need at least 3-4 full days in Rome. However, to explore the city more leisurely and also visit some nearby destinations, 5-7 days or even more would be ideal.

Is 2 days in Rome enough?

While it’s possible to see some of Rome’s highlights in 2 days, it won’t be enough to see everything. You’ll need to prioritize and plan your itinerary carefully to make the most of your time.

How to see everything in Rome in 3 days

To see everything in Rome in 3 days, prioritize the major attractions and plan your itinerary wisely. Consider visiting the Colosseum, and the Vatican Museums, and exploring neighbourhoods like Trastevere and Monti.

Is 4 days in Rome too much?

No, 4 days in Rome is not too much. It will give you enough time to see the major attractions at a leisurely pace, explore some off-the-beaten-path neighbourhoods, and savour the local food and wine.

Is 5 days enough for Rome?

Yes, 5 days is a good amount of time to spend in Rome. It will allow you to see the major attractions, explore some hidden gems, and immerse yourself in the local culture and cuisine. You can also take day trips to nearby destinations like Pompeii, Naples or Orvieto.

Is there enough to do in Rome for a week?

Yes, there is more than enough to do in Rome for a week. You can see all the major attractions, explore the lesser-known neighbourhoods, take day trips, and indulge in the local food and wine scene. So why rush through it? Take your time and enjoy la dolce vita – you won’t regret it!

Is Rome a walkable city?

Yes, Rome is a very walkable city where many of the major attractions are in close proximity. Walking is the best way to see the city’s beautiful architecture, charming neighbourhoods, and ancient ruins. Keep in mind that some areas of the city, such as the Vatican and the Appian Way, are farther apart and may require public transportation.

What is included in a first time in Rome itinerary?

A first time in Rome itinerary likely includes the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, Piazza Navona and visiting the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel.

What are some travel tips for visiting Rome?

Here are some travel tips for visiting Rome:
1. Dress comfortably and modestly and wear comfortable shoes
2. Use public transport or walk to get around
3. Book skip-the-line tickets in advance
4. Try local cuisine and visit local markets and shops
5. Beware of pickpockets and tourist scams
6. Respect cultural and historical sites
7. Learn some basic Italian phrases, it goes a long way
8. Take a break and enjoy an espresso or gelato as often as you can

Is Florence or Rome better?

Both Florence and Rome are amazing destinations with unique attractions and experiences. Florence is known for its art, architecture, and cuisine, while Rome is renowned for its history, monuments, and vibrant atmosphere.

Italy Travel Resources

To help with your trip planning to Italy and be sure to check out my Europe Travel page where with just one click on Italy it will take you directly to a list of Destination Guides for Rome, Cinque Terre, Florence, and Tuscany.

Additionally, click on Travel Resources, and you’ll have access to every resource you might need from accommodations to car rental to travel insurance.

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As a Holidaymaker

When it comes to planning a trip to Rome, the question of “how many days should I spend in Rome” can be a challenging one to answer. Our ultimate 2-day, 3-day, 4-day, and 5-day itineraries provide a starting point for your trip planning, but ultimately the answer depends on your personal interests and travel style.

Whether you have a few days or a full week to spend in Rome, you’ll be able to immerse yourself in the city’s rich history, culture, and cuisine. So go ahead and plan your dream trip to Rome, and get ready to fall in love with this magical city!

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