Some of the best reasons to visit Rome are located outside the city. Once you’ve soaked in the sights there are to see in the city, it’s an easy day out of the city to visit some picturesque villages, stunning landscapes and historical monuments in the Italian countryside. If you plan on doing many such trips, consider searching for places to stay located near the train station or your preferred mode of transport, making it easier for you to reach your destinations. Read on for 10 quick and easy trips out of Rome.
Vatican City. While it might not seem like leaving Rome, visiting Vatican City is a departure from the Italian capital. When coming to the Vatican, if you wish to see the world-famous Sistine Chapel with its legendary paintings, know that lines are often quite long.
Via Appia Antica. All roads lead to Rome, right? Well, this one did. A major road from Roman times, this park features catacombs as well as churches and tombs. It can be reached from Rome by bus, and many people choose to turn this excursion into a picnic.
Ostia Antica. This archeological park is the well-preserved port city of ancient Rome. If visitors haven’t got time to head all the way to Pompeii, this might be a close second choice. The city has a forum, bars, restaurants and a brothel to explore.
Tivoli. Easily reached by train, the main reason to visit Tivoli is the gardens and Renaissance-era villa at the Villa d’Este, built by a pope’s grandson in the 16th century. Hadrian’s Villa is also worth a look. This well-preserved ancient site is where Emperor Hadrian used to escape from his political life.
Ostia Lido. Visiting Rome in the hotter months can cause short tempers and tired sightseers. Taking a day to visit the beach is a sure way to cool off and see another part of the country while you’re at it. You can reach the beach at Ostia Lido, or some other towns along the coast, by public transportation. The beaches are not as well-kept up as they might be at a resort in another part of the country, but they’re great for a day-trip.
Florence. Assuming you catch the fastest train, you can bolt back and forth from Florence in a few hours. Florence has many marvels to see, starting with the city’s center.
Pompeii. Another trip that involves careful scheduling of your train travel, Pompeii can be a single-day excursion. Prepare to spend hours on the train, so plan your day bag accordingly. See the ruins of the city hit by a volcanic eruption in 79 A.D. It’s easiest to get to Pompeii via Naples. If you’re running short on time, you may elect to see Herculaneum instead, which is closer to Naples than Pompeii.
Naples. Fast trains take you south as well as north, bringing you to Naples for an excursion bound to please foodies and archeology buffs alike. Naples’ cuisine is world-recognized and the archeological museums in this city are second to none. This is where you can find many artifacts from Pompeii, for example.
Orvieto. If you’re wondering if you should visit Tuscany or not, Orvieto might be a nice compromise. Only an hour by train from Rome, Orvieto has Etruscan tunnels and caverns to explore. Nestled on top of a hill, visitors take a funicular up to town from the train station, ensuring tourists’ first views of the city are unique to what they experience in other towns.
Frascati. What is Italy without wine? Take a train to Frascati, and explore the hills and lakes of the nearby countryside on foot. Many well-to-do Romans have their second homes in this area. Don’t leave without trying the local vintage.
About the Author: Lorena Morelli grew up with a German mother and an Italian father in Chicago. When she returns to Italy to visit family, she looks for Rome vacation rentals on Venere.com.