If you’re looking for a weekend break, you might dismiss the idea of Rome. Surely it’s too far to travel and too difficult to see in such a short space of time? Yet even though 48 hours will never be enough to see all of this beautiful city, with this guide you can see the best of Rome in the least possible time.

All it takes is some good planning skills! A great first step is to buy a Roma Pass which allows you to have free or reduced access to many of Rome’s sights as well as free access to public transport!

Also consider the location of your hotel. Being such a tourist hotspot, Rome has plenty of hotels available at a reasonable price. Once you’ve decided which attractions you want to visit and when, think about where you want to be based.


Day 1

St Peter’s Basilica and Museums

St Peter's Basilica Rome Italy

Image by Michael Foley via Flickr

St Peter's Basilica in Rome Italy 2

Image by Kent’s via Flickr

Get your weekend away started with a trip to St Peter’s Basilica, a wonderful building with so much history and beautiful architecture. Why not book your ticket in advance to avoid the queues and start by climbing the Cupola? Despite the 320-step climb, you’ll certainly be rewarded with an amazing view from the top looking down into the basilica. Just remember to check for details about the dress code to make sure you don’t get turned away!

For lunch, there are plenty of cafés around to get stuck into. The Duecento Gradi, just a 5-minute walk from the basilica, is great if you’re looking for a quick and tasty panino.


Pantheon Rome Italy

Image by Nika via Flickr

Another must-see is the Temple of the Olympian Gods, the Pantheon. This is the largest concreted dome in the world and still holds important Catholic masses today. It is steeped in art history and architecture, so make sure you take a look.

Once you’ve had your fill, why not try the Fortunato al Pantheon restaurant for your evening meal? Described as one of the ten best restaurants in Rome by Italian food specialist Diane Seed, the Fortunato al Pantheon has also played host to many politicians. You can sample classic Italian foods, but remember to book in advance!


Day 2

The Colosseum

The Colosseum Rome Italy 10

Image by Christopher Chan via Flickr

The big attraction when it comes to Rome is of course the Colosseum. The first permanent amphitheatre in Rome, the Colosseum is still as fascinating today for tourists as it was for the Romans 2000 years ago. If there’s one place you must visit when you spend 48 hours in Rome, it’s this!

The Colosseum is also surrounded with cafés for your lunch, but to make sure you get the quality you deserve, why not try the Taverna dei Quaranta where you can sample authentic Roman cuisine?

The Spanish Steps and Trévi Fountain

A stairway of 138 steps, the Spanish Steps again offer another view of the city, but particularly of the Villa Borghese and Villa Medici. In spring the railings are covered with flowers, which make the attraction even more beautiful. The Spanish Steps also have a museum dedicated to Keats and Shelley if you want a bit of English comfort, but remember that it doesn’t open on Sundays. If you’d like to visit this, consider switching this to day one.

Spanish Steps, Rome, Italy 2

Image by Dark Rome Tours & Walks via Flickr

On your way back, why not visit the Trévi Fountain, one of the most famous fountains in the world? Relax around the fountain and wind down with a bit of retail therapy, or try the Osteria Margutta for your evening meal. This is a quiet restaurant situated near the Spanish Steps and it’s famous for its top quality ingredients!

Trevi Fountain Rome

Image by Christopher Chane via Flickr

The key to 48 hours in Rome is advance planning and booking, even for the restaurants. If you go with a plan in mind and a centrally located hotel, you’ll have the most wonderful 48 hours of your life!

Have you got more tips on how to spend 48 hours in Rome? Share them by commenting below.


Julia Molloy is a travel enthusiast and a keen poet.