Planning a vacation in Rome? Here are our 12 favorite Roman day trips.

1. From Piazza Della Repubblica to the Spanish Steps

Spanish Steps, Rome, Italy

From Piazza della Repubblica, visit the the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli to see its beautiful paintings and statues. Continue along via Nazionale all the way to Piazza Venezia, where you can see the monument Altare della Patria (Victor Emmanuel Monument). From Piazza Venezia, continue to Largo Argentina and the Pantheon. After you see the Pantheon, you can take a break to enjoy a coffee water ice with whipped cream at the Bar La Tazza D'Oro. Continue along Via del Corso, and you will find Via dei Condotti (for designer shopping), which will take you to the Spanish Steps. Don't forget that in via Dei Condotti, there is the Antico Caffe' Greco, the first café in Italy.

2. Piazza Venezia to Domus Aurea

Begin at Piazza Venezia and go to Piazza del Compidoglio, designed by Michelangelo and housing the Capitoline Museums. Continue to Via dei Fori Imperiali (the Roman Forums). This is a fascinating walk. Visit the Colosseum and the Arch of Constantine. End your day at the Domus Aurea (reserve in advance).

3. Walking the Via Sacra

Walk along the Via Sacra, the oldest street in Rome. Visit the Bocca della Veritá (Mouth of the Truth), the Circus Maximus, the Thermal baths of Caracalla, and the Piramide Cestia.

4. Spend the Day at the Vatican

Castel Sant' Angelo, Rome, Italy

Spend the day at the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, and Saint Peter's Cathedral. Visit Castel Sant'Angelo, with the Ara Pacis. Return to Saint Peter's for the public audience of the Pope, held every Wednesday afternoon at 10:30 am (tickets required). Near the Metro stop Ottaviano, there is a very informal but good restaurant, Dino's.

5. Toss a Coin in a Fountain

Walk from Piazza della Repubblica to Via 4 Fontane, to the Quirinale, residence of the President of the Republic. Visit Piazza Barberini to see Palazzo Barberini and its beautiful fountains. More fountains at via del Tritone, to end at the Fontana di Trevi. If you want to go back to Rome, don't forget to toss a coin in the fountain!

6. Live La Dolce Vita

Piazza del Popolo, Rome, italy

From Via del Corso, go to Piazza del Popolo, to see an Egyptian Obelisk. Continue along Trinita' dei Monti, to the Pincio, to Villa Borghese, that is open to the public. Go also to Via Veneto, symbol of La Dolce Vita, depicted by Federico Fellini, for an aperitivo.

7. Visit Ancient Ostia Antica

A day in Ostia Antica, the ancient part of Rome, and Ostia, at the beach.

8. Live Like a Local

Spend the morning at Porta Portese, the most famous flea market in Italy, open every Sunday from dawn until 1:30pm. Stay in the Trastevere area to visit the churches of Santa Cecilia and Santa Maria, and for dinner at Meo Patacca, a typical restaurant where you will be entertained with songs in the Romanesque dialect. Don't forget to make reservations!

9. Start With Coffee at the Piazza Navona

Fountain of Neptune, Piazza Navona, Rome, Italy

Coffee at an outdoor café in the Piazza Navona (with the beautiful fountain), then to the the Campo dei Fiori open air market, and to Piazza Farnese, and the Gianicolo hill, for a "passeggiata del Gianicolo". A restaurant near Piazza Navona is Antica Taverna, while one near Campo dei Fiori is Da Sergio.

10. Visit the Jewish Ghetto

Visit the Jewish Ghetto and the Synagogue, then spend some time at the Isola Tiberina, and eat at another famous restaurant in Rome, Vecchia Roma.

11. Walk Along the Vatican Walls to Villa Pamphili

Walk along the Vatican walls to reach Villa Pamphili.

12. Go Underground in the Catacombs

Dedicate this day to visit the Catacombs: San Callisto and San Sebastiano (in Via Appia Antica), Priscilla's catacombs (in Via Salaria), Domitilla's (in Via delle Sette Chiese) and Sant'Agnese (in Via Nomentana).

Before you leave

Revisit the places you loved the most or to see something you missed. Reflect on all you've done and save the rest for next time. Arrivederci!