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Get ready to embrace your inner gladiator! Rome is a city filled with amazing Roman history and architecture — and of course, delicious Italian food. From exploring Rome’s Colosseum through to panoramic views of the Vatican City, here’s your 48-hour guide to Rome.

Day 1

9 a.m. Sample Rome’s best coffee

48 hours in rome
Photo by Lisa West

Start the day at La Casa Del Caffe Tazza D’Oro, a coffee-joint founded in 1946 that is often voted Rome’s best coffee shop. Start the day with an espresso or a caffe latte accompanied by a sweet pastry or a biscotti.

10 a.m. Give Your Blessing To Pagan Gods

48 hours in rome
Photo by Pixabay

A few minute’s walk away is the Pantheon — a Roman temple in the Historic Center of Rome that was constructed over 2,000 years ago and was a place to worship the Roman Pagan Gods. It’s one of the best-preserved ancient Roman structures in Italy. Spend an hour marveling the Ancient Roman architecture. Entry is free.

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11:30 a.m.  Embrace Your Inner Gladiator

Take a ten-minute taxi to the Colosseum. Stand in the amphitheater and imagine its gory history — it was a place where citizens gathered to watch bloody battles against gladiators fighting humans and exotic animals to the death. Entry is $14 for non-European citizens, as of 2017.

2 p.m. Lunch like the Romans do

48 hours in rome
Photo by Al Gladiatore

By now you’ve worked up an appetite. Head to the nearby Hostaria al Gladiatore restaurant, which serves typical Roman cuisine, such as pasta, soup and pizza. The restaurant has a stunning view of the Colosseum, so savor the view.

4 p.m. Explore The Old Jewish Quarter

48 hours in rome
Photo by VnGrijl

Head to Rome’s Jewish Quarter to explore one of the oldest parts of the city. The Jewish Quarter is rich in history and has one of the oldest continually surviving Jewish communities in the world. Grab some roasted artichokes and stuffed fried zucchini flowers, which are sold on the street, and snack as you explore the narrow, winding streets.

7 p.m. Eat Pizza Like A Roman

Head to the district of Trastevere, which is full of great places to eat pizza. Explore the old streets and colorful houses, before heading to one of the top pizza joints, such as Dar Poeta, or La Boccaccia. Be sure to order a Roman-style pizza, which is known for its thin, crispy crust and simple (but delicious) toppings.

10 p.m. Negroni Time

48 hours in rome
Photo by Necci dal 1924

End the evening with a few Negronis (one of Italy’s most famous cocktails made from campari, vermouth rosso and gin) at one of the cool bars in the Pigneto district. Start at Bar Necci before bar-hopping in the surrounding streets.

Day 2

10 a.m. Make A Wish

48 hours in rome
Photo by Francisco Antunes

After grabbing a coffee and pastry from a deli near your hotel, start the morning at the Fontana di Trevi, or Trevi Fountain. It’s the largest Baroque fountain in Rome — and for many, it’s the most beautiful fountain in the world. Throw a few Euros into the water and make a wish.

11 a.m. People Watch At The Spanish Steps

Take a ten-minute walk to the Spanish Steps, a beautiful outdoor staircase in the Spanish district of Rome. Grab a gelato and watch the world go by.

1 p.m. Lunch in the market

48 hours in rome
Photo by Mercato di Testaccio

Head to Testaccio Market, a bustling market place that sells everything from homeware to food. Grab a hot sandwich from one of the stalls – locals love the Tripe sandwich. If you don’t feel like walking, get there by booking a taxi with Book Taxi Rome. They offer a really good and cheap service.

2:30 p.m. An Afternoon in the Vatican City

Now it’s time to head to the Vatican City. The walled city, which is an independent state, is home to many churches. Explore the streets of Vatican City and take a peek inside some of the churches. If museums are your thing, head to the Vatican Museum to see its collection of Renaissance art.

5 p.m. Panoramic Views of the Vatican City

48 hours in rome
Photo by Pixabay

Wind down the afternoon at the top of St Peter’s Basilica, which offers panoramic views of the Vatican City and Rome. With over 550 steps to the top, you’ll want to stop at the top for an hour or so and soak-in the views. Admission costs $6 and if you’re feeling lazy you can take a lift to the top, for $3 more.

7 p.m. Enjoy a Traditional Italian Dinner

48 hours in rome
Photo by Matricianella

Head to Matricianella, a traditional Italian trattoria that has checked tablecloths and is packed with locals. The restaurant is known for its delicious pasta dishes, such as carbonara and tagliolini al tartufo. Wash it down with a glass of Italian wine, and finish with a dessert such as Tiramisu.

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