I was obsessed with Rome before I ever visited. I loved history and languages and, when my high school Latin club planned a trip to Italy, I signed up. We only spent about 24 hours in Rome but I was immediately hooked and wanted to know every square inch. I moved to Rome in 2003 and realized it was the city's complexities and peripheral neighborhoods—rather than the superficial beauty of the historic center—that would hold my attention for a lifetime.
For me, Rome is a series of realities bound to the dozens of districts that populate the map. Each neighborhood and its markets and squares are the result of unique and constant evolution. There is no single Rome and the city experience changes-—often profoundly—from one district to the next.
Here's what I'd do on my One Perfect Day in Rome: