7 Days in Rome: The Best One Week Itinerary + Where to Stay
You’re planning to spend one week in Rome and you’re looking for the best itinerary?
You’re at the right place!
In order to help you plan your stay, I have prepared for you this 7 days itinerary in Rome. In this guide, you will find:
- All my best tips to avoid waiting in line and save a lot of time (and money!)
- The day to day itineraries, with details about your visits and my best tips
- My selection of the best hotels for your 7-day stay in Rome, depending on your budget.
And if you’re going to Rome as a family, I will also give you a few ideas of activities that will make your stay truly wonderful for your kids!
So, how to spend 1 week in Rome? Where to stay?
Let’s find out!
- 7 Days in Rome: The Best One Week Itinerary + Where to Stay
- How to avoid waiting in line (and save a lot of time!) at Rome’s tourist attractions
- One Last Tip for a Perfect 7-Day Stay in Rome
- Visiting Rome in 1 week: the best itinerary
- Day 1 – Ancient Rome
- Day 2 – Discovering the Vatican
- Day 3 – Rome’s historic centre
- Day 4 – What to do and see in Rome?
- Day 5 – Day trip to Tivoli
- Day 6 – Visit Pompeii or a day at the beach
- Day 7 – Castel Gandolfo
- Where to stay in Rome?
- A week in Rome with your family
- More things to do during your 7 days inRome
- Map of your one week itinerary in Rome
- 7 days in Rome: Flight prices
- You’re traveling in Italy? These articles will help you!
How to avoid waiting in line (and save a lot of time!) at Rome’s tourist attractions
You know it: Rome is for sure one of the most touristic cities in the world.
No matter in which season you’re planning your one week trip to Rome, you can expect to face huge waiting lines in front of the Colosseum or St Peter’s Basilica, the city’s iconic monuments.
But don’t worry, I am here to help!
In this guide, I will give you all my best tips to skip the waiting lines and optimize your visit to Rome.
So, here are the 3 solutions to avoid queuing and save a lot of time:
1. The Rome Tourist Card
For your one week itinerary in Rome, one of the best solutions is to buy the “Rome Tourist Card”, sometimes also called “Rome City Pass”.
It includes priority entrance to Rome’s must see attractions. All skip the line tickets are sent by email, and you will get a 100% digital pass. This means you won’t have to collect anything from a ticket office.
This is really the most convenient way to avoid waiting in line during your 7-day visit to Rome!
Here is what’s included in the Rome Tourist Card:
- Priority entrance to the Colosseum with audio guide + Roman Forum + Palatine Hill
- Guided visit (skip the line) for St. Peter’s Basilica + audio guide
- Skip the line ticket to the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel
- 10% discount on museums (Castel Sant’Angelo, Borghese Gallery), guided tours (Tour of the Catacombs, Rome by bike) and excursions around Rome (Florence, Venice…)
To buy your Rome Tourist Card, simply click on the green button:
2. The Omnia Card
There is another option to save time and money during your 7-day stay in Rome: buying the Omnia Card.
Even if it also includes skip the line tickets for the most popular tourist attractions, this card is only valid for 3 days. This means that you will have to group the visits included in the Omnia Card during the first days of your stay.
Hopefully, I have organized this itinerary in a way that will make your purchase of the Omnia Card, also known as the “Vatican and Rome Pass”, profitable:
- During the 3 first days, you will visit tourist sites included in the Omnia Card
- The rest of the week, you will do free visits and/or day trips around Rome.
Here are tourist attractions you can access with your Omnia Card:
- Priority entrance to the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel
- St. Peter’s Basilica: priority ticket + audio guide
- St. Peter’s Prison: skip the line ticket + audio guide
- Basilica of St. John Lateran and the cloister: skip the line ticket + audio guide
- 2 free tickets to choose from for the following tourist sites
- The Colosseum, Palatine Hill and the Roman Forum
- Castel Sant’Angelo
- Borghese Gallery
- Capitoline Museums
- Free access to all public transport for 3 days in Rome
- Discounts for some activities and museums
- 1 ticket for Rome Hop-On Hop-Off tourist Bus
- 1 city map
To buy your Omnia Card, you need to click on the green button below:
3. Skip-the-line tickets for Rome’s tourist attractions
Your 3rd option to visit Rome in 1 week is to buy skip-the-line tickets for each attraction separately.
You can also book all your entrance tickets, guided visits, activities and excursions in advance. It’s also a great way to avoid unnecessary waiting and save money!
Here is the list of the best skip-the-line tickets for your one-week stay in Rome.
To check prices and to book, simply click on the orange links below (you will also find them throughout the article):
- The Colosseum
- St. Peter’s Basilica
- The Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel
- Castel Sant’Angelo
- Capitoline Museums
- The Pantheon
- St. John Lateran Basilica
- Villa Borghese
- Hop-on Hop-Off tourist bus
- The Catacombs of Rome
One Last Tip for a Perfect 7-Day Stay in Rome
If you already know your travel dates (or as soon as you will have them!), you should really book your accommodation.
As Rome is one of the most touristic cities in the world, the hotels offering the best value for money are often fully booked months in advance.
As a seasoned traveler, I can assure you that it’s always by planning as far in advance as possible that I’ve found the best hotels or apartments deals.
You agree that it would be a shame to somewhat ruin your stay in Rome by ending up in a not-so-great hotel that costed you a fortune, right? 😅
So your best bet is to take 5 minutes now to have a look at traveler’s favorite hotels in Rome.
And if you like one of the hotels you find, book it!
It’s fast, it’s easy and most accommodation offer free cancellation. That’s the best way to protect yourself from the inconvenience of finding nothing but mediocre rooms at exorbitant prices.
To check the best hotels deals in Rome, simply click on the green button below:
After securing your dream stay, it’s time to continue reading this guide!
Visiting Rome in 1 week: the best itinerary
Let’s now start your 7-day itinerary in Rome!
For each day, I will give you all the details you need to plan your visits + a map that will allow you to visualize your itinerary a bit better.
I’m assuming you will be staying in Rome for 7 full days and that you will be using the Rome Tourist Card / Omnia Card or have purchased skip-the-line tickets. It’s the best way to save time and money during your one week stay!
If you still have questions after reading this guide (or need help organizing your holiday), don’t hesitate to ask me in the comments section located at the very end of this article.
So, what are the best places to visit in Rome in 7 days?
Day 1 – Ancient Rome
Day 1 visits:
A. The Colosseum
B. The Roman Forum
C. Palatine Hill
D. Piazza del Campidoglio / The Capitoline Museums
E. Piazza Venezia / The monument to Victor Emmanuel II
A. The Colosseum
Let’s start your one week itinerary in Rome with one of the most famous monument of the city: the Colosseum.
This impressive arena was the largest amphitheater of the ancient Rome. Despite a few missing pieces, the Colosseum is still standing and as impressive as ever!
It was able to host more than 50 000 spectators, who came to the Colosseum to watch the famous gladiatorial combats, animals fights and Roman games.
In addition to these rather bloody shows, the Colosseum also hosted theatrical performances or reconstructions of famous battles.
During your visit, you will be able to discover the first two floors, the central arena and the underground tunnels where the animals were kept.
As there is always a huge waiting line at the entrance, you should buy your skip the line ticket in advance. All tickets to the Colosseum also includes access to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.
In order to help you find your way around all the different tickets, I have prepared a list of all tickets for the Colosseum (click here).
As all tickets for the Colosseum are not always available (for a given date, there is a limited number of tickets of each type, and they are sold out very quickly!), the orange links take you directly to the page with all Colosseum tickets.
Simply choose the one that suits you best on that page.
Of course, if you already know your travel dates, book quickly to ensure you can visit the monument.
To sum it up, the best ticket in my opinion is the “Colosseum + Arena + Roman Forum + Palatine Hill”:
If you want to learn everything about the fascinating history of the Colosseum, you should opt for the following guided visit:
Guided tour: Colosseum + Roman Forum + Palatine Hill
And if you have no budget restrictions, I highly recommend you to take the VIP guided tour: VIP Guided Tour: Colosseum (+ Underground + Arena) + Roman Forum + Palatine Hill.
It will allow you to access exclusive places like the arena or the underground of the Colosseum!
You won’t visit Rome every day, and that’s the best guided tour to the Colosseum and my personal choice:
B. Palatine Hill
After leaving the Colosseum, you can head to Palatine Hill to continue your visit (with the same entrance ticket as the Colosseum).
Legend has it that Romulus and Remus, the founders of the city, once lived on this hill.
Wander freely among the ruins without missing the superb view from the top of the hill. You will also have the opportunity to admire what remains of the residence of Augustus, the first Roman emperor.
C. The Roman Forum
The 3rd archaeological site included in your Colosseum ticket is the Roman Forum.
The Roman forum was the heart of the ancient Rome. There, you will be able to admire ruins of administrative buildings, the ancient market and several temples.
A guided visit is recommended, as it makes the visit a lot more interesting. You need to book your guided visit by clicking here!
D. Piazza del Campidoglio / Capitoline Museums
Let’s continue your day in the historic centre of Rome by visiting the Piazza del Campidoglio, located only a 15 minute walk from the Roman Forum.
This beautiful square, designed by Michelangelo, is surrounded by 3 palaces: the Palazzo dei Senatori, the Palazzo dei Conservatori and the Palazzo Nuovo.
They are commonly called the “Capitoline Museums”. They house famous works, including paintings by Tintoretto and Caravaggio, as well as the famous statue of the She-wolf suckling Romulus and Remus
To visit the Capitoline Museums, you need to buy your tickets by clicking here.
E. Piazza Venezia / The monument to Victor Emmanuel II
End the first day of your 1 week trip to Rome by going to Piazza Venezia, only 5 minutes away from the Piazza del Campidoglio.
You will immediately recognize this square thanks to the huge Victor Emmanuel II Monument, made of white marble. On Piazza Venezia, you can also admire the famous Trajan column, featuring engraved scenes of military exploits.
Day 2 – Discovering the Vatican
Day 2 visits:
A. The Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel
B. St. Peter’s Basilica
C. Castel Sant’Angelo
A. Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel
During your 7-day trip to Rome, you should devote a whole day to visiting the Vatican, the smallest country in the world.
You should start by visiting the Vatican museums, a huge museum regrouping more than 13 museums. You will have to opt for one of the predefined itineraries for your visit (from 1h30 to 5h) depending on the time you wish to spend in the museums.
No matter which itinerary you will choose, they all end with the highlight of the show: the famous Sistine Chapel!
B. St. Peter’s Basilica
After the museums, have lunch in one of the many restaurants around the Vatican and continue your visit with St Peter’s Basilica.
Located on St. Peter’s Square, St. Peter’s Basilica is one of the most visited monuments in the world.
Even if the entrance to the basilica is free of charge, you should really purchase a priority entrance as there is always at least 2 hours of waiting line before being able to get inside.
During your visit, you will for sure be amazed by the interior of the basilica. There, You can admire the baroque decorations, Michelangelo’s huge dome, the papal vaults and the statue of Saint Peter.
You can also go to the top of the dome (for a fee) to enjoy a superb view of the surrounding area.
St. Peter’s Basilica ticket + Audio guide
Guided tour of St. Peter’s Basilica (cut line) + dome + crypt (the most complete!)
C. Castel Sant’Angelo
At the end of your day at the Vatican, walk down Via della Conciliazione, back to Rome.
In about 10 minutes, you will arrive at Castel Sant’Angelo.
This castle was built under the orders of the Emperor Hadrian and was used as a refuge for the popes during attacks.
While visiting the castle, you will discover the former apartments of the popes, ancient tombs, as well as some of the ancient weaponry used to defend the castle. Don’t forget to go for a walk on the ramparts, they offer really beautiful views over the city.
The castle visit will take you 1 to 2h.
When leaving the castle, you will pass by St. Angelo bridge located just in front. It passes over the Tiber and offers a beautiful view of the river and the city at sunset.
You need to book your ticket to visit the castle by clicking on the button below:
Day 3 – Rome’s historic centre
Day 3 visits:
A. Piazza Navona
B. The Pantheon
C. The Trevi Fountain
D. Via del Corso / Via Condotti
E. The Piazza di Spagna
F. Villa Borghese
Your one week trip to Rome continues!
On this third day, you will visit the historic centre.
You can for example start at the superb Piazza Navona. This square, for sure one of the most beautiful squares of the Italian capital seems to be coming straight out of romantic film!
Fountains, cobbled floor, picturesque cafés and street artists, everything is here.
Enjoy a good breakfast on one of the terraces surrounding the square, take a bit of time to walk around and take a few pictures. It will then be time to head to your next stop: The Pantheon.
B. The Pantheon
The Pantheon is located just a few metres away from Piazza Navona.
Built during ancient Rome, it houses the tombs of Emperor Victor Emmanuel II, the painter Rafael and many other historical figures that you can discover inside.
Since July 2023, access to the Pantheon has been subject to a charge and requires an admission ticket (cost: €5). To visit, you should book your ticket on the official website.
C. The Trevi Fountain
The Trevi fountain is an absolute must-see during a 7-day itinerary in Rome!
Considered one of the most beautiful fountains in Europe, it attracts millions of tourists every year and is only a 10 minute walk from the Pantheon.
It’s indeed a highly touristy place, so be prepared to see a rather large crowd gathered around the fountain. Visitors like to take pictures and throw coins, but the Trevi Fountain is above all a beautiful work of art.
The fountain’s basin is dominated by a statue of the God Neptune, enhanced by the baroque monument just behind it.
D. The Via Condotti
A week in Rome will for sure give you time for a bit of shopping in the historic centre.
Starting from the Trevi fountain, take Via del Corso, one of the main shopping street in Rome. It’s the place to go if you’re looking for the big brands like H&M and Zara.
If Italian luxury brands like Prada or Gucci are more your thing (or you want to do some window shopping!), you should rather go to Via Condotti, a little further on.
And if you don’t feel like shopping, simply pass by these streets quickly, as they will lead you to your next stop.
E. The Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps)
Rome’s Piazza di Spagna (not to be confused with the square of the same name in Seville!) is a beautiful and picturesque cobbled square.
Also called “the Spanish Steps” in English, it’s located at the foot of a large staircase that leads to the church of Trinità dei Monti.
In this square you can experience the authentic atmosphere of the Italian ‘dolce vita‘. Simply relax and enjoy a good snack or drink!
F. Villa Borghese Gardens
Located just a few steps away from the Piazza di Spagna, Villa Borghese and its gardens are the perfect place to end this day of visits.
Here, you can:
- Take a stroll and enjoy the greenery of the most beautiful public gardens in Rome.
- Admire the many fountains and statues
- Take a boat ride on the lake
- Visit the botanical garden
- Visit the Biopark, a zoo with more than 1000 animals
- Visit one or more museums:
Day 4 – What to do and see in Rome?
Day 4 visits:
A. Campo di Fiori market
B. Trastevere district
C. The Aventine hill
D. The catacombs of Rome
A. The Campo di Fiori market
For your 4th day in Rome, let’s get off the beaten track a bit.
First, you can head to Campo di Fiori market to immerse yourself in the local culture and do a bit of food shopping.
It’s located in the historical centre and is open every morning (except Sunday). This very authentic market is one of the cheapest in Rome.
B. Trastevere district
Located on the right bank of the Tiber, this small, quiet and popular district is still relatively little known by tourists (that probably won’t last as it’s becoming more and more crowded lately).
Here you will not find imposing historical monuments, but you will be able to enjoy the local life: small cobbled streets, flowery gardens, typical Italian squares, cafés and craft shops. A beautiful walk in perspective.
C. The Aventine Hill
Let’s continue our visit and head to the Aventine hill, about 20 minutes walk from Trastevere (or 10 minutes by bus).
This peaceful district also features many gardens and pretty alleys to take a stroll in the sun. Located on the hillside, it offers a breathtaking view of Rome.
On the Aventine Hill, you can also:
- Visit the Basilica of Santa Sabina
- Unravel the mystery of the Piazza dei Cavalieri di Malta: people queue up to look through the keyhole of this door… Why do they do this? I’ll let you find the answer by going there!
D. The catacombs of Rome
To end your fourth day on an original note, you can visit the catacombs of Rome.
The largest are the catacombs of Saint Calixtus (15 hectares!), that were once used as a cemetery for Jews and Christians. You can see several tombs as well as scenes of life engraved on the walls.
For safety reasons, you can only visit the catacombs with a guide. The guided visit lasts about 30 minutes and needs to be booked by clicking here!
You can also visit other catacombs:
- The catacombs of San Sebastian
- Domitilla’s catacombs
- The catacombs of Priscilla
- The crypt of the Capuchins (the easiest to reach, right next to the Trevi Fountain).
To visit them, you need to buy your tickets directly here.
Day 5 – Day trip to Tivoli
During your 4 full days in Rome, you’ve had the time to get an excellent overview of the city.
So for the 3 remaining days, you should explore the surroundings of Rome. There is a lot to discover!
Your first excursion will take you to Tivoli, about 30 kilometres from Rome.
This town is home to 2 of the most beautiful Italian villas: the Villa d’Este and the Villa of the Emperor Hadrian (the largest architectural complex in Imperial Rome).
To get there, you should opt for a guided day trip. It’s for sure the most convenient way to visit these palaces and gardens!
The tour includes the transport from Rome, the lunch, and the guide. To book it, simply click on the button below:
Day 6 – Visit Pompeii or a day at the beach
For your sixth day in Rome, I offer you 3 options to choose from:
Option 1: Visit Pompeii
Visiting Rome in 1 week will give you the opportunity to visit Pompeii, the famous ancient city located close to Naples.
Pompeii, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the best places to visit around Rome. As you probably know, this ancient Roman city was suddenly engulfed by lava in 79 AD during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. It was then rediscovered only in the 17th century!
Because of the volcanic sediments, the entire city was “frozen” and preserved. Thus, the ruins of Pompeii still bear witness to the ancient Roman civilization and allow you to take an incredible journey back in time.
You can see the streets, almost intact buildings and even well preserved bodies.
To get there, you can book a round trip shuttle bus from Rome. The departure is at 7.15 am and the return at 7 pm. This shuttle will allow you to reach Pompeii easily and then you will visit the site on your own.
A skip the line ticket for Pompeii archaeological site is included in the price.
You need to book your day trip to Pompeii by clicking on the button below:
And if you prefer to opt for an all included day trip to Pompeii (shuttle bus + lunch + guided visit to Pompeii), it’s there:
Option 2. Visit Pompeii and Vesuvius
Your second option is to book a day trip that includes a visit to Mount Vesuvius, in addition to the visit to Pompeii.
After exploring Pompeii, you will be guided to the crater of the volcano and will be able to enjoy a great view over Naples.
This tour also includes the lunch: an authentic Neapolitan pizza!
You need to book your guided tour to Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius here:
Option 3. Day at the beach Lido di Ostia
If you prefer to opt for a relax day at the beach, then your third option is to spend your 6th day in Ostia
This small coastal town is only 15 km south of Rome and offers a few beaches such as the Lido di Ostia.
You can get there by car, taxi or train to avoid the heavy traffic in Rome. A great way to spend a relaxing day away from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Day 7 – Castel Gandolfo
To end your 7-day trip to Rome in style, you can spend a day in Castel Gandolfo.
This small town located on the outskirts of Rome (40 minutes drive) is one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. It has also been the place of retreat of the popes for several centuries!
The village is built on the top of a hill, overlooking Lake Albano, a volcanic crater lake.
Things to see in Castel Gandolfo:
- The Papal Palace and Papal Residences
- The church of St. Thomas of Villanova
- Villa Barberini and its antiquities
- Lake Albano
- The archaeological site of Ninfeo Dorico.
You’re now almost ready for your 1 week itinerary in Rome.
Let’s now see another important point: Where to stay during your trip!
Where to stay in Rome?
To discover the best places to visit in 7 days in Rome, you will need to book a hotel.
In order to help you out, I have prepared a selection of my 7 favorite hotels depending on your budget.
You should really book your hotel as soon as possible, the best deals usually don’t last long!
- Biancaluna: B&B located near Termini Station, 1.5 km from the Colosseum. Modern, comfortable and very clean room from 70€. Strong points: the warm welcome and the advice to visit Rome, the location. An excellent choice for a cheap stay in Rome!
- Hotel Balilla: Located 1.6 km from the Colosseum and close to a metro station. Well-equipped and quiet double room, impeccably clean, from 99€, breakfast at 5€. Strong points: the friendly staff, the comfort of the beds, the location at 10 min walk from the Colosseum. This is our favorite for its excellent value for money!
- Alice Vatican House: Located 450 meters from St. Peter’s Square. Contemporary room with neat decoration from 95 € per night, breakfast included. Strong points: ideal location, terrace overlooking the Vatican, warm welcome. This is the best choice for your stay in Rome under 120 euros!
- MZ Hotel: Located near the Campo di Fiori and not far from the Pantheon. Modern double room from 150€, breakfast at 12€. Strong points: the location near the historical center, the warm welcome, good bedding, new hotel.
- Roma Luxus Hôtel: High end hotel located at only 400 meters from Piazza Venezia. Beautiful double room starting at 200€ per night, breakfast at 20€. Strong points: The room design, the 5 stars service, the superb breakfast, the spa, the amazing staff. It’s the best hotel for a high end stay in Rome!
- NH Collection Roma Fori Imperiali: This 5* hotel located right next to the Roman Forum offers sublime rooms from 580€, breakfast included. Strong points: the exceptional location, the attentive staff, the view, the comfort. This is our recommendation for a luxury stay in Rome!
if you want to save a bit of money, you can find an accommodation around Rome. I recommend you he bungalows of Camping Village Rome, located at only 15 minutes by car from the Vatican city.
The price starts at only 30€ per night! It’s the best “budget” solution if you don’t mind not being in the city center. It’s also a great choice for families, with the swimming pool!
A week in Rome with your family
If you’re going to visit Rome in 7 days with your family, here are a few ideas of activities your kids will for sure enjoy:
- The impressive Colosseum is a must see for adult and children alike. Tell them a bit about the gladiators for instant fascination!
- Villa Borghese gardens are a great place to spend time with your family thanks to the picnic and play areas, the bike paths, the boat rides and the visit to the Biopark (tickets for sale here).
- The gladiator school will offer your kids the opportunity to dress up in traditional gladiatorial clothing and get a sword fighting training! A truly original activity for your 7-day family trip to Rome. Click here to book this activity!
- The Explora Museum is a very well done fun museum with many activities for the youngest. This activity can be included in the third day of this itinerary.
- Pompeii and its unique history are also sure to please the whole family.
If you’re looking for an original and fun activity to do with your family, I also recommend you this Italian cooking class organized near the Trevi Fountain.
Under the guidance of a real Italian chef, you will learn how to prepare an authentic Italian pizza. Of course, you will be able to taste your work at the end of the course!
This pizza making course + dinner must be booked by clicking here.
More things to do during your 7 days inRome
This suggested itinerary allows you to see the best attractions Rome and its surroundings has to offer in a week.
And as it’s perfectly optimized, you won’t waste time going back and forth in the city.
However, if you want to change or add activities, you should read my other article about the 25 best places to visit in Rome. It will for sure help you to finalize your itinerary!
You can read it here: The 25 best things to do in Rome.
Map of your one week itinerary in Rome
To help you visualize your daily itineraries during your 7 days in Rome, I have created this map with all the places to visit day by day. You can view the map’s legend by clicking on the top left button, the one with a little arrow.
You can thus see the suggested itineraries for each day.
7 days in Rome: Flight prices
As always, you should book your plane tickets as early as possible to get the best prices.
To check the rates and schedules for flights to Dubai, you can use our flight comparator, in partnership with Skyscanner:
Now, you know how to visit Rome in a week!
You need help to plan your 7 days itinerary in Rome? Don’t hesitate to ask me your questions in the comments section below!
🚗 Rent a car
🗽 Book entrance tickets and guided visits
🏄 Book your sports activities
🚤 Book your rental boat
🌍 Take a travel insurance
🙎 Book a tour
🚅 Book your train tickets
✈️ Book your flight
Italy travel Guides
- Buy the Lonely Planet Italy guide on Amazon.com or on Amazon.co.uk
- Buy the Rick Steves Italy guide on Amazon.com or on Amazon.co.uk
You’re traveling in Italy? These articles will help you!
Discover all my articles about Italy: All my articles to help you plan your trip to Italy are listed there.
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