I haven’t even been back a month from Italy and it feels like a year, I spent 6 days in Italy and unless I go on a holiday with my future boyf —- haha wishful thinking I will most likely spent maximum 4 days in Italy as I want to visit numerous cities. I also met a lot of people visiting Rome for literally two days and because I went before they asked for my advice. I am no way near a tour guide of Rome, I have only been twice but I know the area quite well now and the epic places to visit in only 48 hours.
If you are looking to go for a weekend trip or on an interrailing/backpacking experience, make sure to choose Rome as it has so much to offer and you can fit a lot in, in 48 hours. My top tip before I get into the itinerary, is to get a transport pass and the metro from my experience was so convenient, efficient and easy to use. I will most likely do a separate post for where to eat in Rome but make sure to eat as much pizza, pasta and gelato as you can! Most importantly, if you want to stay in a hostel go to The Yellow… that’s all I have to say when you spend 48 Hours in Rome.
Less things to see on Day 1 as from my two previous experiences, your feet will ACHE because of the cobbled streets and how big the city is. In 10 days (6 in Rome) I walked a grand total of….. 83 Miles.. I felt it in my feet so 100% get a metro. You also don’t want to get too tired so you do less on your second day and leave it till the afternoon to do anything.
Iconic, how else should you start your 48 Hours in Rome other than visiting the Trevi Fountain? I recommend visiting right in the morning as it gets SUPER busy towards the afternoon, you can still get to the fountain and throw some money in but it is always nicer when it is less congested. It is said that every day around 3000 Euros are collected from the fountain and taken to charity. Around the fountain are amazing Gelaterias, Pizzerias and Shopping Centers. So as much as it seems like a big city there is always some massive piece of history around the corner. Remember to throw one coin if you want to return, two if you want to find love and 3 to get married. I did 2 last year and my love life was more of a mess than ever BUT I returned!
As a budget traveller, I am very selective with what tour I spend money on but the Colosseum is something you can’t avoid. It is iconic, magical and every other similar word in the dictionary. Just like the Trevi Fountain, the Colosseum gets HECTIC even from the early morning with queues so definitely 100% do a guided tour. You get in quicker, local knowledge and get to meet a lot of people in the group. Most tours will include the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. I think I only paid 25 Euros for the whole thing which is nothing in comparison to other tours and got amazing information.
I first got introduced to this building as the “wedding cake building” also known officially as Altare della Patria is a monument in honour of Victor Emmanuel the first King of Italy. It is now managed by the Italian Ministry of Defence and is one of the most insane buildings I have ever seen in Rome, there is about 472637231 landmarks. INTERESTING FACT COMING UP…. The horse in the middle of the landmark was once occupied by 25 people for dinner… looks tiny close up but it can happen! You can also get a lift — for a price — to the top and have 360 degree views of Rome. This is a landmark well worth a visit when you spend 48 hours in Rome that you may not necessarily know of.
What I love about Italy, is how you can just sit anywhere and chill because I can’t list many places in the UK or where I live where I can do that. In the UK that just doesn’t happen, maybe its a UK thing and also the weather does not allow us to do it! What I also find funny, is how everyone sitting on the steps has 27253252 pairs of eyes (obviously an estimate) staring right at you along with their cameras — not judging I do it too. However, like I have said before it is epic and you just have to sit on those steps and chill before you explore the rest of the city.
If you read my previous post, you know that this is mine and Dimitri (Bike Tour Guide) favourite Piazza in Rome, because it isn’t congested and has space to roam about without bumping into people. It has surrounding restaurants where you can gaze at the cathedral, fountain and Italian bands serenading you. Piazza Navona is also VERY close to the Pantheon so it is a great place to take 5 minutes off or go for a spot of dinner. Speaking of dinner, you can’t spend 48 hours in Rome and not having pizza or pasta — or both. The Carbonara and pasta in general is soooo good, after not eating pasta for a year (couldn’t eat it in Spain) I carb-ed it up.
Start secondo giorno further out than you experienced yesterday, you can sleep off your exhaustion on the plane home or to your next destination. My second time in Rome I tended to explore further out of Rome because I felt way more confident getting the metro.
One for the foodies, because Trastevere is wear it is at! I cycled through Trastevere but never got to experience the bars and restaurants (would come back with my future hubby — hahaha LOL). When I cycled through, it was so quaint and seemed like the proper Italy that you may not see in the city centre. It is a hub for local and international students, so be sure to make the most of this bohemian district and go into the ale craft bars and boutique shops.
I may not be a massive art lover and being honest I don’t follow a certain religion, however I am open to all and like to know more about them. If you are the same, it shouldn’t mean that you can’t or feel like you wouldn’t like visiting the Vatican Museums and St. Peter’s Basilica. I went with The Roman Guy and spent 3 hours learning about the history of Rome and the art behind the Sistine Chapel. Fun fact… technically the Vatican City is it’s own country so you can visit another country in Rome to tick off your list and it is the smallest. Spend 48 hours in Rome and say you have visited the smallest country in the world!
I didn’t get to experience this on my first trip, so I got to experience this with some amazing girls I met on my first night. These gals are everything and so glad that I got to go with them. We were all feeling rough from the night before and to see this fairytale like Piazza was everything we needed. We were all obsessed with the Lizzie Mcguire film so that is what dreams were made of. It also leads onto some amazing cute shops that are away from the tourist filled areas.
I must say I thought Campo di Fiori was going to be busier than the two times I visited, but in fact it was so quiet and seemed so local, authentic yet was really charming. The market offers everything from bags to different coloured pasta, which I forgot to buy because I am an absolute idiot. The market is full of history too with the Vatican City, but overall I felt really comfortable there too. Normally, because I obviously don’t look Italian, I am pale and blonde I feel like I am stared at as a tourist and here I didn’t I felt so comfortable. Make sure to buy some local produce and take advantage unlike myself!
Do something different when you spend 48 hours in Rome and chill in tranquility in Borghese Gardens. It is nice to sometimes take a break from the city and take a stroll through a landscape garden with English influences. As well as the gardens, there is also a selection of museums and fountains to take some Insta-worthy photos of. There is a beautiful lake in the middle of the gardens, so take a blanket and chill as you reminisce about an awesome 48 hours in Rome.
I hope you took something from my suggestions on your next 48 hours in Rome, of course you don’t have to do these things in things in that order and remember I am not a tour guide but these are from my experiences. You may be knackered after your 48 hour road stop in the city but it is worth it for what you see, because every corner there is something beautiful.
If you need a catch up on my blog, I also have a new post about the best tours to see in Rome with The Roman Guy. this was a magical experience that I would love to do again or advise anyone to do because I loved it despite the fact I am no professional cyclist. Right now I am recovering from a wedding and preparing for my graduation, how is everyone else doing?