Non omnia possumus omnes (we can’t all of us do everything) as Virgil said, and it’s true. Especially so if you want to see most of Rome and you’ve got only one day. Organizing a Rome day tour becomes an increasingly difficult task if you’ve never before set foot there – what should you see, what can you see, if you have very limited time?
Fortunately, the most ancient sights in the city are very close to each other, which makes for a perfect day tour!
Before we begin, here’s a trick to skip the line for tours in Rome: always check if you can buy your tickets online or arrive very early, near the time of opening – this way, you won’t have to suffer a long wait before seeing ancient wonders.
Almost every Rome day trip will start with the most imperious building in the city – the Colosseum. This commanding structure is 2,000 years old and the sight of it takes your breath away. Even millennia after their fall, you can still see the might of the Romans looming above you.
Built in 80AD during the reign of Emperor Titus, the amphitheater could host around 50,000 people. If you have the time to visit the inside, you might hear the echoes of a number of exhibitions of exotic animals, executions of prisoners, and the famous battle recreations and gladiator fights that delighted the ancient Roman citizens for 500 years.
Since the last time it was in use, in the 6th century, the Colosseum has survived the changing times, earthquakes, lootings, and even WWII bombings!
In order to skip the lines, you should arrive early in the morning or buy your tickets in the nearby Palatine Hill. Along with the Colosseum, the tickets include entry to the Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill.
The Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill
A stone’s throw away from the Colosseum, the Roman Forum is one of the most ancient places in the city. The forum was the heart of the ancient Republic – here are gathered the most important public and sacred buildings. One of the most interesting places in the forum is the Curia, the meeting place of the Senate.
Walk further up the path of history, and you’ll reach the Palatine Hill. The most central of the eight hills on which Rome was built, this is considered to be the birthplace of Rome itself. According to legend, this hill is where Luperca, the wolf, raised Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome. Needless to say, the Hill was the home of many an influential Roman, and you can walk among the ruins of their palaces.
This trifecta – Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill – is perfect if you’re a history lover in search of fantastic Rome in a day walking tour!
The Trevi Fountain
Most Rome day trips will include a visit to the Trevi Fountain – it’s featured in many a movie, from La Dolce Vita to the more recent La Grande Bellezza. Laureled with the title of the most beautiful and largest fountain in Rome, it had humble beginnings as the end to the Aqua Virgo aqueduct. Then, it grew into a fountain during the Renaissance. Its appearance continued to change until 1762 when it finally became what it is today.
The fountain, aside from being a marble marvel, is also bound with a legend. It goes like this: throw one coin in the waters, and you will return to Rome; throw two, and you will fall in love with an Italian; throw three, and you will marry the person you met.
Even the fountain’s name is slightly magical. It originates from the two words Tre Vie, meaning three ways, because the fountain was precisely at the meeting point of three ways.
The Sistine Chapel
Once you’ve rested by the fountain, it’s time to visit the smallest state in Europe, the Vatican.
While it’s true that day tours of Rome cannot show you every nook and cranny, it would be a shame if you left without seeing one of the greatest artworks in the world.
The ceiling of the Sistine chapel is widely recognized as Michelangelo’s masterpiece and everyone should see it at least once in their lifetime. Painted between 1508 and 1512, the colors of the Creation of Adam, along with the story of Genesis, and the Final Judgment are still as vibrant as the day they were made. Make sure to bring a magnifier of some sort – the ceiling is high and you might not see all the details with your naked eye.
Rome day tours will, of course, depend on how you want to experience one of the oldest cities in the world. Whether you’re a history lover or a gourmand, there is always something for you in Rome. If you’d like to travel in luxury, contact us today – we can provide you with top of the line transportation, and enable you to experience life the way Italians do.