“Only three days to visit Rome?” “What to see and do with 3 days in Rome?”. Here follows an exciting itinerary for visitors with only a short time to discover the city’s main attractions. These tours are designed for guests of ‘Cielo Vaticano Guest House’, (but are valid for all visitors of Rome). Keep in mind that during check-in will give you a map and a list of osterie, trattorie, pizzerie, ristoranti, not too touristy and with excellent price/quality relationship.
First Day: Basilica of St. Peter – Vatican Museums – Castel S. Angelo
Our first day commences in the Vatican City, where visitors are literally hypnotised by the impressive splendour of the Basilica of St. Peter as soon as they start making their way down Via della Conciliazione. Cielo Vaticano Guest House is just 10 minute’s-walk from Piazza San Pietro. No photograph can do justice to the sense of marvel inspired by immensity of the building, the grandeur and by the magnificence of the adornments and works of art inside. Once here, a visit must be made to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel with its huge artistic wealth, the product of centuries of collecting and papal commissions. During high season the queue for Vatican Museums could be really long, we suggest to buy the tickets for skip the line on line in advance here.
If we turn back down the Via della Conciliazione, we will reach Castel Sant’Angelo, the papal fortress built in the Medieval period on the ruins of the tomb of the Emperor Hadrian (II century A.D). The complex history of this monument, with its many additions and extensions, can be broken down into three principal periods. These periods are represented by the Ancient Roman remains of the imperial mausoleum, by the fortified castle, and by the Papal apartments. During summer, the famous “Passetto di Borgo” or “er Corridore” (the corridor) – the fortified and elevated passage on the Mura Vaticane (Vatican walls), linking the Vatican to Castel Sant’Angelo – is open to visitors. You can come back by foot 🙂
Second Day: Colosseum – Via dei Fori Imperiali – Roman Forum – Campidoglio (Capitol Hill) and the Capitoline Museums
We start off from the Colosseum, the symbol of Rome par excellence with a history stretching back almost two thousand years. From our guesthouse take the bus 271 or Metro. To the right of the Colosseum, here we are at the Arch of Constantine, Rome’s best-known triumphal arch. While just a stone’s through away we can see the Palatine Hill, where Romulus founded the Eternal City in 753 B.C.
Moving down the Via dei Fori Imperiali we come to the Roman Forum, the political, financial and religious hub of Rome, with the Imperial Forum just across the road.
A little further on, at the end of Via dei Fori Imperiali and after Piazza Venezia, there is Piazza del Campidoglio, which has been centre of city government since the XII century. Michelangelo’s stunning piazza is flanked by the Capitoline Museums, the world’s oldest national museums. To come back ‘home’ take bus 271 or take a taxi (9/14 euros).
Third Day: Piazza di Spagna – Fontana di Trevi – Piazza Navona
Pantheon – Trastevere
Take Metro A to ‘Piazza del Popolo’ and walk down via del Babuino to Piazza di Spagna.
Renowned world over for its spectacular steps, designed by Francesco De Sanctis between 1723 and ’26, as well as for Pietro Bernini and his son Gian Lorenzo’s 1629 half-sunk boat-shaped fountain called “La Barcaccia”, Piazza di Spagna is an important meeting point for both Romans and tourists. Rising up on top of the Steps and overlooking the Piazza is the Church of Trinità dei Monti, which was built on the wishes of King Louis XII of France in 1502. Shifting our gaze to the left, Villa Medici sul Pincio, today the seat of the French Academy, comes into sight. Fanning out from the piazza below are a myriad of streets where both the top fashion brands are to be found as well as sites of historical and cultural interest. Not to be missed is the Café Greco in Via dei Condotti. Walk straight-on in via del Corso, the shopping street, and go to the Pantheon. The Pantheon is nothing less than the finest example of the very best architectonic craft of ancient Rome. The simple harmonious structure results from its perfect cylindrical proportions, given that the diameter of the dome is equal to the height of the building. Its interior provides the last resting for a number of important personages.
After, walk to Piazza Navona. Viewed from above, the square’s outline is that of an arena. It was in fact built on top of Domitian’s Stadium, the remains of which are to be found in the piazza’s Seventeenth Century Baroque Church of Sant’Agnese in Agone, which was designed by that great architect Francesco Borromini. Adorning the piazza are three sumptuous fountains: the Fountain of the Moor, the Fountain of Neptune and the most important of all, Bernini’s Fountain of the Four Rivers (the Nile, Ganges, Danube and Rio de la Plata). During the festive season from early December to the Epiphany, the piazza is annually filled with Christmas stalls selling toys, sweets and crib figures.
Over an amphitheatre dating from Emperor Nero’s rule, Domitian had a stadium built towards 86 A.D. However over the course of the centuries, Piazza Navona was the favourite spot to hold games, tournaments and processions. Between the seventeenth and nineteen centuries, the piazza was often flooded for aquatic games and to stage naval battles, where boats of princes and prelates would be paraded with the letting off of fireworks.
From piazza Navona you can reach Trastevere (trough Piazza Campo dei Fiori and cross Ponte Sisto). Trastevere, the heart of the city, home to major Italian dialectical poet Gioachino Belli and the inspiration for another, Trilussa. It is precisely here that Roman plebeians were born and raised. Amid piazzas, its “Fontanone” fountain and cobblestoned streets, the “Trasteverini” led in ancient times the lives of the common people, whose pride and sincere character as well as beautiful women set them apart from the “nobility”. Today the district is still amongst Rome’s most beautiful and characteristic: the hub of nightlife and wining and dinning, an open air theatre of marvellous piazzas (Piazza Trilussa, Piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere, Piazza San Cosimato ..), churches and historical alleys, all of which are marked by that distinctive timeless “Roman” flavour.an ideal district for a pleasant stroll through its alleys and piazzas whose colours and general atmosphere still preserve genuine Roman traits of old. Trastevere moreover offers a vast choice of restaurants and bars to spend a relaxing evening out.
To come back home take the bus 23 or taxi (9 – 13 euros). 🙂
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