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As much as Rome's city center has to offer, there are still a multitude of sights to see at various locations surrounding the city. Within the span of approximately two hours, you could be walking through the hallowed halls of a sacred monastery or getting closer to piece of history. There are many day trips organized from Rome that are worth experiencing.
Take a trip to Ostia Antica. Once a port city of ancient Rome, it is now an archeological park covering approximately 10,000 acres of land. The same ancient streets that were traveled by the Romans of a bygone era are preserved here, as evidenced by the telltale grooves from their familiar carts and carriages. Mosaics, ancient baths, shops, and temples are all well preserved for a glimpse into Roman life.
If historical sites interest you, take a look at Hadrian's Villa, where the ancient emperor spent his vacations and ultimately the last few years of his life. Based in Tivoli, the villa is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, beautifully appointed with statues and pools. Also in Tivoli is the Villa d'Este, renowned for its Baroque gardens and architecture. Both of these are sites that shouldn't be missed.
In Subiaco, the Benedictine monasteries (San Benedetto and Santa Scolastica) open their doors to visitors and show them the remains of the cave where Saint Benedict had lived as a hermit. Frescoes carved in the 13th century detail the life and times of the saint and his twin sister Santa Scolastica and the miracles they performed. The monks sell medicinal teas, honeys, and digestives to visitors of the monastery.
Ghost hunters can take a tour of the Castello di Fumone (Fumone's castle), which comes complete with legends and ghost stories. Visitors (with nerves of steel) are welcome to stay the night as the castle has accommodations for a bed and breakfast. The family that owns the castle is still resident in a separate wing of the building.
Another must-see city is Florence, which is about an hour and a half outside of Rome. Recognized as the home of the Italian Renaissance, visitors are treated to a world of art culture in the form of museums and art galleries.
Naples is also a good city to visit if you don't mind the hustle and bustle of city life. This is the home of the best Italian pizza. You've never had pizza until you've had it in Naples. In the same area is Pompeii, the once great city that was destroyed by a volcanic eruption. The ruins of the site remain preserved and aesthetically beautiful despite the ancient tragedy. This day trip remains one of the most popular from Rome.