We spent a total of 3 days in Rome which was quite perfect. Most mornings were pretty busy and then we would eat lunch and just wander around.
On our second day we got up early and headed to Vatican City to go to the museum. We didn’t pre-book tickets so we arrived about an hour before it opened to stand in line. The line is annoying, it’s long, slow moving, and there are people constantly harassing you to take guided tours and try to sell you hats and scarves. At least we got to stand in the shade and lean against a wall.
The Vatican museum was beautiful, but so crowded. We tried to enjoy it as much as possible but eventually we took the shortcut to the Sistine Chapel. No photos allowed inside, but it really was as beautiful as you would think, although smaller than I imagined. it’s not a large chapel by any means.
And pro tip…when leaving the Sistine Chapel exit to the right, through the group tour exit, this allows you to go directly to St. Peter’s Square. The other exit makes you loop back around the walls of Vatican City.
The pope was actually going to be around later that evening, but we weren’t able to make it back.
The museum excursion took most of the morning, so when we were finished we hopped on the metro and headed to Il Margutta for lunch, a vegetarian restaurant! They do a buffet style lunch and then a seated dinner (we returned for dinner the next night, but I preferred the buffet lunch).
The restaurant isn’t too far from The Spanish Steps, so we walked over there and explored that part of town.
On our last day in Rome I had one thing I really wanted to do…go check out the cat sanctuary!!! I had read about this place years ago, but really wasn’t sure if it was still open. It’s so cool though, it’s a cat sanctuary in the middle of Rome, in the ruins. These cats live the life.
It was a game of spot the cats!
Post cats we walked over to the Pantheon. I liked the Pantheon because it was free and because of the giant hole in the top, I was really hoping it would start raining so we could see the rain fall inside of the church.