If you’re only able to be in Italy for three days, the logical choice is Rome. In the heart of Italy, you’ll find a collection of art in many museums, ancient structures and ruins of early Roman times as well as outstanding accommodations and cuisine. With only three days to spend, you’ll need to hurry to get in as much as possible, but be sure to leave some time your schedule to just relax and let the city buzz around you.
Day 1 – Palantine Hill, the Forum and the Colosseum
The first day you’re in Italy, head over to the Colosseum to see one of the most famous landmarks in the world. Tickets for the Colosseum can be tricky to get, so research this stop ahead of time and either buy the ticket online or head to Palantine Hill first and buy a combination ticket for Palantine Hill, the Colosseum and the Roman Forum.
Spend the first day in Rome exploring all three locations making a stop to eat in the shadow of the ruins or bring along a picnic or sorts to enjoy while you’re out to avoid wasting any time. For dinner, continue exploring the ancient relics and dine near the Pantheon before licking a gelato and taking in the beauty of the Trevi fountain.
Day 2 – The Vatican
Spend the second day in Rome split between the Vatican and other museums as time allows. The Vatican museums are impressive and you’ll be able to see the Sistine Chapel along the way. If you manage to spend only part of the day in the Vatican, you can then also stop by the Capitoline Museums in the afternoon and early evening. Spend the evening relaxing with local food in a restaurant off the busy tourist beat. Put your feet up and enjoy a bottle of wine while you watch people walk by in the twilight.
Day 3 – Catacombs or Pompeii
On the third day, you can easily combine the Catacombs of Rome with shopping in the city or you can take a bus and head out of town to Pompeii, just an hour or so outside of the city. Spend the day touring the once-buried city of Pompeii and get a real feel for ancient life in the Roman Empire. Or, if time doesn’t allow for the day trip, visit the Catacombs in the morning and then spend the afternoon peeking through shops for the perfect treasures to take home again.