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Navigating Rome in a Day

Hi! We will be in Rome with virtually half a day of free time. We would like to see the Colosseum, Sistine Chapel, Piazza Navona, and Trevi Fountain for certain! We will not have a car. What is the best and safest mode (and ,hopefully, not too expensive) of travel for two young female adults? Thank you!

Posted by
22982 posts

Walk -- not that far apart. Navona and the fountain are close but the Colosseum and Chapel could present time problems simply because the lines could be long.

Posted by
1020 posts

Given your short free time, I advise you to use taxis to the Colosseum and to the Vatican Museum entrance from which you go to the Sistine Chapel. Walk the route from Piazza Navona through Piazza della Rotunda to Trevi Fountain. Taxis aren't that expensive in Rome and literally buy time for sightseeing. Even then, you'll be hard pressed for time.

Posted by
31528 posts

It seems to me that (assuming half a day is 4 hours and virtually half a day is less than that) you are looking at an impossibility. You have to get from wherever you are to the start of the day. Unless you just want to drive past the Colosseum its got to take at least an hour, could be longer, plus lines. Half an hour to the Vatican if traffic is good. Then lines to get in. Its a long walk to the Sistine Chapel. You have put all that effort in so surely you will spend some time looking around, and to get there you have to walk past all the nifty stuff in the Vatican museums. Then back across town to Piazza Navona and around to the Trevi, both of which can be done reasonably quickly, then back to your starting point. You're not planning to eat, drink, or go the bathroom on this day are you? Well, none of the above answers your direct question. The answer to that has to be a private driver who will be ready as soon as you are at each place. Not to expensive? - Sorry. Or get taxis each time.

Posted by
22 posts

Agree with Nigel and Tex. We walked everywhere; it was nice; it took time. Best advise is to spend the money for a guide/taxi and just do it. Rome Pass let us in quickly to the Colosseum and we waited maybe 30 minutes for the Vatican/Sistine Chapel area; Piazza Navona and Trevi were just very congested with foot traffic. We could not have done it in a day walking around. Have fun!

Posted by
6 posts

Thank you for all of the great suggestions! I know it's a ridiculous time frame, but hopefully we'll be able to see some of the fabulous sites.

Posted by
1068 posts

I dissent and suggest doing just one half or the other of your plan. Since I am a mad history and art buff, I'd choose the Colosseum and the Sistine Chapel. I could have spent 4 hours (minimum) in either of those places. The Piazza Navona and Trevi Fountain would also make a nice half day, if combined with some strolling, window shopping, and cafe sitting. (Or you could do that and then zoom by the Colosseum in the cab, just to say you'd seen it. It's worth a squint from the outside even if you can't go in.) I think that trying to do all four will involve too much running around like maniacs and battling lines and checking your watches - all in the HEAT, if you're going this summer - and it doesn't sound like a plan at all. It sounds more like a pain.

Posted by
32 posts

You can make a reservation at the Vatican Museum (which is where the Sistene Chapel is) and go straight to the Sistene Chapel. I would then take a taxi to Piazza Navona and walk to the Trevi Fountain (which will take you past the Pantheon if you have interest in that). Then take a taxi to the Colosseum. The Roma Pass would be expensive for just that one sight, but it will also get you in quickly. We were there at the end of May in the middle of the day and waited around 5 minutes because we had the Roma Pass (there was a long line for everyone else). You can see the outside of the colosseum for free :-).

Posted by
16 posts

It depends on when this 1/2 day is-morning or afternoon? Hopefully the morning. And what day of the week? and where will you be at the beginning?What part of Rome? How about signing up for a highlight tour? I don't think it would include the Sistine Chapel though. You could go to the Sistine -hopefully in the am. The best thing about not being in a group is that solo travelers are unwanted by group tour guides in the long line at the Sistine!
There were 2 of us and the tour groups kept pushing up in the line and we ended up near the front after being towards the back!!

Posted by
643 posts

The Roma Pass will not get you into the Vatican Museum. It's also not worth it for half day. You can purchase tickets to the Vatican Museum where you skip the line. However, it is a long walk to the Sistine Chapel. It would probably take at least 20 minutes to get to the Chapel. Once you are in, however, you will not want to rush through.
You'll need at least an hour to see the Colosseum.