All-Season, Weekend Getaway Guide to Rome, Italy for Food, Art and Culture

Advisor - Michelle Zelena
Curated By

Michelle Zelena

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  • Luxury Travel

  • City Travel

  • Food & Wine

  • Arts & Culture

  • Adventure Travel

  • Couples Travel

  • Active Travel

  • Rome

  • Italy

  • Food & Wine

  • Art

  • Culture

A shot of the Colosseum at night in Rome, Italy.
Curator’s statement

I had my babymoon in Rome, the perfect spot for food, art, culture and getting your steps in. In four days, you can cover almost every major neighborhood in Rome – if you are an active traveler. Enjoy beautiful streets, plazas, the most historical art you've ever laid your eyes on and, most importantly, pizza, pasta and gelato. One can simply never get enough! It's amazing to go in the off-season as it is less crowded and just as beautiful.

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Where to stay

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The First Musica

Luxe property along the banks of the Tiber River with elegant rooms and suites.


All-suite hotel with a baroque-meets-glamour design located just a short walk from Piazza Navona.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Hotel Manfredi

Grand property in a converted theatre from 1718 with polished rooms and suites.

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Advisor - Michelle Zelena

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Day 1: Vatican first, gelato second

White statues and columns against a blue sky at the Vatican City in Italy.

Start your trip with a bang and go to the Vatican! It's hectic but honestly the most incredible experience regardless of how many people are there. It's crowded for a reason, the art is just too good to explain.

After you've been delighted visually, head to 200 Gradi for some casual crispy amazing paninis right nearby.

Go shopping in the Prati neighborhood, that's where all the local Italians shop and hang out – it's definitely a bit quieter than across the river where all the main tourist attractions are. Highly recommend hitting MaxMara and the shops near it, hopefully you're there in January like we were when there are 'Soldi's' everywhere.

Grab gelato at Gelateria dei Gracchi, you won't be disappointed. After that head home for a well deserved nap, for dinner my favorite casual meal was at Osteria delle Coppelle, where you can order anything and it will be delicious. If you're ready for another gelato, head to Giolitti nearby. Make sure you get the whipped cream too – did I mention I did this trip while pregnant??

Day 2: Explore the city of Rome

Roman architecture in Rome, Italy with cloudy skies in the background.

Start your day with an amazing continental breakfast at your hotel if they offer it (The First Musica had a dream spread).

Then, walk over to the Trevi Fountain. While touristy, it's still beautiful and tear-jerking, especially when it's not crowded.

Next, stroll on over to the Monti neighborhood for some great vintage shopping – I particularly liked Pifebo Vintage Shop. This will lead you right by the Colosseum, which I personally found a little boring, you can just stroll around the outside for some views unless you want a tour of the inside then go for it.

Afterwards, make sure you secured a reservation at Aroma, a gorgeous rooftop bar at the Manfredi hotel for lunch overlooking the Colosseum.

It's now time for a good nap.

For dinner, stroll through Piazza Novana - gorgeous architecture, fountains and vibes. Grab a drink in the lobby of G-Rough, drinks always come with little snacks and it's amazing.

Right nearby you'll find the most recommended restaurant in Roma, Roscioli Salumeria con Cucina, secure a reservation in advance, if possible. It gets busy but the burrata and carbonara are worth it.

Day 3: More of Rome on foot

The Pantheon in Rome, Italy at night lit up with white lights reflecting on the stone.

Wake up and hit Coromandel for breakfast, a really cute brunch spot with great American options, such as pancakes with an Italian twist.

Spend the day wandering to see all the things you haven't yet, starting with Campo Di Fiori square where they have nice farmers market.

Next head on over to the Pantheon, which has free admission. It is also breathtaking and a nice easy pit stop. After that, head up Via del Corso or any adjacent streets, shop along the way until you hit the Spanish Steps. Some major shopping is available right outside of the Spanish Steps including Gucci and Prada – majorly discounted when you buy in Italy and get the VAT tax refunds. Stop at the Hotel Hassler Roma for a well deserved cocktail by the Spanish Steps.

It's about nap time now.

For dinner tonight, I highly recommend Sora Margherita, a Jewish-Italian staple that makes a new menu daily. If they have the artichokes, get them! Right nearby is the best tiramisu at a place called Two Sizes.

Day 4: Soho House and Italian eats

A host standing at a restaurant with a stand with pasta and vegetables, as well as tables that have checkered table clothes in Rome, Italy.

If you happen to be a Soho House member, the new Rome location is a must. It's a 15 minute ride outside of the city but the views and food are worth it. The rooftop pool is a great place to lounge, even in January it can be 60°F and sunny – you can get a tan! The Cecconi's here is insanely delicious and can't even be compared to the US location.

Afterwards, stroll around the Villa Borghese Gardens and look at the view of Piazza del Popolo – it's stunning. Right outside the Borghese gardens, you can hit the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art for some modern art for a change.

Lastly, you must hit the Trastevere neighborhood for a stroll before you head home, the streets are super quaint and the restaurant Otello is amazing. As is the gelato at Otaleg! One other can't be missed restaurant is Emma Pizzeria – they have the most classic Roman pizzas and, not to mention, many types of truffle.

Need to Know

Looking to extend your European vacay? Check out my Good-For-All Romantic Guide to Barcelona.

Advisor - Michelle Zelena

Travel Advisor

Michelle Zelena

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