Are you thinking about taking a day trip to Orvieto from Rome? This is an easy and rewarding day trip by train and, with a little planning, you can hit the highlights of Orvieto like a travel ninja.
But how do you do this and what are the best things to do in Orvieto in one day?
As I have visited this enchanting hilltop city twice, this is where I can help you. Get the lowdown in my guide to doing a day trip from Rome to Orvieto by train.
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Day Trip from Rome to Orvieto by Train at a Glance
- Orvieto to Rome distance: 60 miles
- Journey time: From 1 hour 16 minutes one-way
- Cost of train ticket: Around €9 one-way
Is One Day in Orvieto Enough?
One day in Orvieto is enough time to visit its show-stopping cathedral, explore its famous underground sights and sip a glass or two of Orvieto Classico. There will even be time left over for a spot of retail therapy.
How to Get from Orvieto to Rome
The easiest way to get from Rome to Orvieto is by train or joining an organised tour. Alternatively, you can drive.
Getting from Rome to Orvieto by train
Direct regional Trenitalia services from Rome to Florence stop in Orvieto. They leave from Rome’s Termini station (Roma Termini), also calling at Roma Tiburtina station.
Services are frequent and the train journey from Rome to Orvieto takes as little as 1 hour 16 minutes.
A one-way ticket costs around €9. As the ticket prices for these regional services are fixed, you do not need to buy your ticket in advance.
Although there are a few (slightly) faster Intercity services from Roma Tiburtina during the day, the regional services are comfortable and cheaper.
As this is a regional train, there is no advantage in booking your train ticket for Orvieto in advance. You can just buy your ticket at the train station.
Ticket machines at Rome’s railway stations are easy to use. Just avoid any “kind” offers of help from strangers. Scam artists have been operating at Termini for as long as I can remember.
Italo trains between Rome and Florence do not stop at Orvieto.
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Getting to Rome Termini Train Station
Roma Termini is the city’s main transport hub. Metro lines A and B intersect at the station and it is also served by many city buses.
Tiburtina station is on Metro line B.
Getting from Orvieto Station to the city centre
Orvieto is made up of two parts.
Orvieto Centro, its historical centre located high up on the rock, is where you want to be. Orvieto Scalo, at the foot of this rock, is where the train stops.
Take the funicular to reach the historic centre. This leaves from opposite the train station every 10 minutes from 7:15 am to 8:30 pm. Buy your ticket from the train station’s Buffet della Stazione (€1.30 in 2023).
You will alight in Piazza Cahen in Orvieto Centro. From here, it’s a short walk to the Duomo.
But if you are feeling weary, your funicular ticket includes a free ride on the shuttle bus to Piazza Duomo.
Getting from Rome to Orvieto by Car
On my first visit, we drove from Rome to Orvieto, straight up the A1 Autostrada (toll road). With a fair wind, this will take you around 90 minutes.
The easiest thing to do is to leave your car in one of the city’s parking lots. There are three main car parks in Orvieto:
- Piazza della Pace in Orvieto Scalo (also known as parcheggio della funicolare) – free. This is the best option in high season.
- Via Roma in the city centre – paid
- Campo della Fiera in the city centre – paid
Much of the historic centre is a limited traffic zone (called locally ZTL) or pedestrian-only.
Visiting Orvieto on an Organised Tour from Rome
Alternatively, why not let someone else take care of the arrangements for you? Day tours are a good option if you are unsure about navigating public transport in Italy, are keen to visit more than one destination in a day or want to benefit from the knowledge of a guide.
This day trip is for you if you want to visit Civita di Bagnoregio. This is one of the most enchanting places in Italy but a little awkward to reach by public transport.
>>> CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE
Assisi is one of my favourite places in Italy and is the perfect partner for Orvieto on this day trip from Rome. This affordable excursion includes lunch.
>>> CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE
Getting Around Orvieto
Orvieto is a dream to explore on foot. Walking from one end of the historic centre to the other only takes around 30 minutes.
The Orvieto City Pass (Orvieto Carta Unica)
If you are planning to visit a number of key attractions, consider buying the city pass.
The Orvieto Carta Unica offers free admission to nine museums and monuments and discounts at partner sites. In 2023, it costs €25 and is valid for one year.
To help you decide if it will be worth it for you, take a look at my Orvieto City Pass review.
READ THIS NEXT: Is the Orvieto Card Worth It
Best Things to Do on an Orvieto Day Trip from Rome
To help you make the most of your day trip to Orvieto, here are my favourite things to do. Think of this as a loose framework on which to hang your day.
If you like to map it out, here’s one that I prepared earlier. For an interactive map, click here or on the image itself.
1. Visit Orvieto Cathedral
Start your day in Orvieto’s most famous landmark. Duomo di Orvieto is one of Italy’s finest cathedrals, famous for its lacy and luminous exterior, frescoes by Luca Signorelli, and a blood-soaked altar cloth.
2. Descend into St. Patrick’s Well
Descend 175 feet to the floor of Pozzo di San Patrizio, Orvieto’s remarkable double-helix well. Then walk all the way back up again.
Patrick’s Well was built in the 16th Century to guarantee a water supply for the city’s residents.
3. Take the Orvieto Underground Tour
Orvieto is famous for its rich history that stretches back to the Etruscans. Vestiges of these ancient times can be found in and around the city and to get a feel for this period in time, join one of the excellent tours of Orvieto’s extensive underground city.
English language tours of Orvieto Underground operate four times a day.
I highly recommend booking your tour at the office on Piazza Duomo as soon as you arrive in Orvieto.
4. Go wine-tasting
This Italian hilltop city is perhaps more famous for its eponymous wine, Orvieto Classico Bianco. It is made from at least 60 per cent local Grechetto and/or Trebbiano grape varieties and has delicate flavours of citrus and ripe pear.
But don’t just take my word for it. Try it for yourself by going wine tasting in Orvieto.
I recommend Enoteca La Loggia on Corso Cavour, which offers wine tastings. Failing that, simply savour a glass of Orvieto Classico in the shadow of the cathedral.
READ THIS NEXT: Wine Tasting in Orvieto, Italy: 8 Fabulous Winery Tours
5. Shop for ceramics
You can’t walk a few yards in Orvieto without stumbling upon a pottery shop.
Although a legacy of the Etruscans, the city’s ceramics trade took off during Orvieto’s glory days in the 13th Century. The ceramics shops that line its streets are a testament to the continuation of this tradition.
Where to Eat in Orvieto
Orvieto is an excellent place to try typical Umbrian dishes such as wild boar (cinghiale), black truffles (tartufo nero), pigeon and umbricelli (a thicker and chewier version of spaghetti). Here are a few places I tried and loved:
Trattoria La Palomba (Via Cipriano Manente, 16, 05018 Orvieto)
My feast of pasta with shaved truffles followed by lamb will remain in my memory for years to come.
Febo (FE3.0) (Via Gualverio Michelangeli, 7, 05018 Orvieto)
If you are more of a beer drinker than a wine guzzler, try this microbrewery. The food was good and the beer was excellent.
Is Orvieto Worth Visiting?
Orvieto is home to a spectacular cathedral, oozes charm and history and serves some of the best wine on the planet. It is worth visiting for all of these reasons.
Spend a day in Orvieto to experience a gorgeous hilltop city; stay overnight to enjoy its uncrowded streets and savour the delicious local cuisine.