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2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
56 posts
3 reviews
2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

We only have two days in Rome prior to our walking tour of the Amalfi Coast. Would it be a sin (pun intended) to miss visiting the Vatican? I know there is much to see and I would hate for our two days to be used up by only seeing the famous sites. I don't want to miss just sitting in a Piazza and watching the world go by or heading off the beaten path in search of "happy accidents".

Any opinions?



Level Contributor
78 posts
1. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

in my opinion the Vatican is a must, you can book the 2 hour tour thru the vatican that way you'll have half of that day to visit other places in rome, believe me you won't regret.



Level Contributor
1,614 posts
16 reviews
2. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

Do not miss the Vatican - it is one of the high tourist attractions to see in Rome. You can do a 3 hr. tour & get a pretty good overview. This is what we did and went in the afternoon when the crowds were less intensive.

Hagerstown, Maryland
Level Contributor
6,157 posts
23 reviews
3. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

To some it may be a sin, but I think whether you should make time for it depends on the kind of tourist you are.

Believe it or not, I'm going to be there just over 5 days in March, and I've crossed the Vatican off of my itinerary. It's not that I'm not interested, but it's a massive place and I would want to linger at my favorite works for a while, rather than scurrying along to keep up with a tour. Which means it could take several hours for me to get through it. And given all the other things in Rome I want to see (not to mention a day trip outside the city to see Hadrian's Villa), I'm just not sure how I can fit it in. And I have no doubt I'll someday return to Rome.

That's my $.02 worth.

Berlin, Germany
Level Contributor
1,366 posts
3 reviews
4. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

I agree that running from one sight to another is nonsense. But the Vatican is very impressive so you shouldn't miss it. Do it without a tour so it's just a short intermezzo and after that you have enough time for sitting and watching the world going by.

By the way my favourite Piazza for sitting around is the Piazza Farnese just next to Campo de' Fiori.

austin, texas
Level Contributor
580 posts
20 reviews
5. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

Every traveler has different priorities and rationales, but I think you would be absolutely crazy to miss the Vatican. You could see the high points (sistine chapel, hall of maps, st. Peters) in a half day if you had to. There's plenty of time in the evening to watch the world go by. And, that still leaves you 1.5 days to see the coloseum, forum, trevi fountain, pantheon, etc. You will get strange looks the rest of your life if when you mention that you've been Rome, you have to tell people that you didn't see the sistine chapel. DO NOT MISS IT.

Jacksonville, FL
Destination Expert
for Jacksonville
Level Contributor
5,577 posts
32 reviews
6. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

Definitely see the Vatican. The Sistine Chapel is worth the whole trip! You'll be right at St. Peter's Basilica, so you can take a quick look around in there as well. You can easily do the colisseum, forum, Pantheon, Trevi fountain in one day and then the Vatican will only take a half day since it closes around 12:30 or so (last entrance) and then you have to be out by 1:20 approximately. The line will look huge, but in our experience it moved extremely quickly, so it's not as bad as it looks. Try to get there early to maximize your time. If you only have 2 days, get up early and just tell yourself you'll catch up on your sleep later. But keep in mind, these are just our opinions. You have to decide for yourself, but if you do the Vatican up until 1:30 or so, you'll have all afternoon to soak up the culture sitting at a table in a piazza!

Level Contributor
277 posts
24 reviews
7. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

I would skip the Vatican Museum, if I only had two days in Rome. The lines are generally long and if you go any time, but in the low season there will be so many people in the Sistine Chapel you won't really appreciate it.

I don't know what time of year you are going, but I would recommend seeing St. Peter's Basilica if the lines are not too long.

I would recommend that you see the things you most want to see and not spend most of your two days in line.

My most enjoyable times in Rome were walking around and absorbing the atmosphere.

Texas, USA
Level Contributor
85 posts
8. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

If the Vatican hasn't been on your must see list -- perhaps it isn't a must see for you. That's okay.

If my time is overbooked, I don't enjoy the experience. When I planned a trip to Paris, I never considered going to the Eiffel tower -- I had other interests.

Gnat, you could always address your sinful ways during confession, but even that doesn't require you to be in Rome.

Have a great trip - whatever that may mean for you.

New York
Level Contributor
43 posts
25 reviews
9. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

I want to see the Vatican too. What do you suggest the best way to see it? Directly through the Vatican or a private tour? Any suggestions on what private tour company?

Jacksonville, FL
Destination Expert
for Jacksonville
Level Contributor
5,577 posts
32 reviews
10. Re: 2 days in rome -- skip the Vatican?

Personally, I like to get a good guide book and walk through it on my own. This way I can spend as much or as little time as I want in each area. Just a personal preference.