Rome! It was every bit as delicious as I wanted it to be. And thank goodness it's such a huge city because we walked EVERYWHERE so we could burn off the millions of calories we were consuming on a daily basis!
I'm not sure one can ever spend enough time in Rome on a vacation - I think you need to up and move there to really get to know the city - but thanks to some friends who live there we did our best at blanketing the city with 3 days! Hotel de Russie was basecamp and we did a minimum of 25,000 steps a day here! Save yourself some walking and take public transportation - or walk if you're trying to burn off all the pasta like me!!
- Get aquatinted with the city! Download the Rick Steve app and follow along on some of his self guided walks of the city. Check out the Piazza del Popolo / Spanish Steps / Trevi Fountain and wander around!
- After your first few stops, make a stop over at the Pantheon and get in line! Don't worry - it moves fast and the inside is well worth the wait!
- Dinner at Roscioli is a must - ok if I HAD to pick a favorite restaurant from the trip - this would be it! Half restaurant / half wine bar and they have a prosciutto sampler. Need I say more. Also the best Cacio e Pepe ever. I died.
- Happy Hour at Hotel de Russie - their patio is the best in town and they make a spritz with a twist that won't disappoint!
- Head back to the Pantheon + Trevi Fountain for a glimpse of these beauties with all the lights!
- Explore the Villa Borghese / Borghese Gardens - these require tickets that your hotel concierge can arrange for you!! It's a perfect way to spend a leisurely morning before some major walking begins!
- After the Borghese, start your long walk over the Vatican City area and grab lunch at Pizzarium. You can order all sorts of Roman pizza and they slice it up so you can nibble your way through the entire menu!! The toppings are creative and it's just what you need before touring the Vatican!
- Vatican City - St Peters / Sistine Chapel are both not to be missed, obviously, but I would HIGHLY recommend getting a guide! We hired Eyes of Rome based on some recommendations from friends who had recently been and they were incredible. Private tour for the two of us and you get to skip the lines - jackpot! I also loved this rather than a group tour because we got to move at our own pace and spend time only where we were interested!
- Post Vatican, wander down the river towards the Trestevere District and wander around. It's the cutest neighborhood in my opinion and there are a bazillion cute cafes and patios where you can grab a table, eat some castelvetrano olives and have a spritz. (on brand!!)
- Dinner at Da Enzo - reservation required!! We went for it this night and ordered 3 kinds of pasta and lasagna!! Carb overload and it was glorious!
- After dinner grab a gelato and wander back to the hotel!
- Start the morning early with a trip to the most incredible farmers market at Campo de Fiori! Grab a coffee in the square and wander the stalls of fresh produce, handmade pasta and flowers. It was HEAVEN!
- Once you've gotten your fill of produce and flower instas - make your way over to the Colosseum district (again - but sure to book tickets ahead of time to save time on the lines)
- After you've spent a decent chunk of time in the Colosseum, take a quick walk over to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill and do a self guided tour! We downloaded Rick Steves tour and he does an incredible job explaining everything!
- Once you're exhausted from all the walking / sight seeing, head back to the Campo de' Fiori area and grab pizza at Forno Campo de' Fiori. Grab a bench nearby and set up shop and chow down.
- Post lunch we wandered the streets of Rome before heading back to the Hotel de Russie for happy hour on their patio!
- Somehow we built up enough strengh to hike it back over to the Trastevere for our final meal at Le mani pasta