Sightseeing Tours of the Colosseum Roman Forum

tour duration

4 Hours

start time

09:00 AM & 02:00 PM
Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat

meeting point

Colosseum, more details at booking

Excursions of the Colosseum Roman Forum Tour

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Rome - Colosseum - front view
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The Colosseum is the most famous building of Antique Rome. Located in the Eternal City, capital of Italy, its construction began in 72 A.D under the reign of the Emperor Vespasian and was finished around 82 A.D. In the beginning, the Colosseum was named “Flavian Amphitheatre” since Vespasian founded the Flavian dynasty. It is composed of three different levels of arches and it is about 48 meters high. This Amphitheatre was able to welcome about 70 000 people for the different shows and games it held. There were 80 entrances; one was personally dedicated to the emperor and his family while three entrances were dedicated to the Roman Elite. Inside, the different terraces were organized in a way that the different social classes were separated from one another while watching the various games. The name “Colosseum” first appeared in the Middle Ages because people were fascinated by the huge statue of Nero (known as the “Colossus of Nero”) that once stood next to the amphitheater.

Things to see

The Colosseum offered different kinds of entertainment to the Roman people such as animal fights, hunts of wild animals such as lions and tigers, gladiator fights, and reconstructions of different battles, including naval battles. Said naval battles were permitted due to the ingenious machinery which brought water inside the Colosseum.

The Colosseum is listed as one of the new Seven Wonders of the World. Unfortunately, its structure suffers from bad weather, pollution and time. The parts of its walls that are missing and which give it its famous silhouette were taken away during the Middle Age to build other buildings, such as Saint Peter’s Basilica. In other words, Saint Peter’s Basilica was built with stones originating from the Colosseum!

Piazza Venezia

Rome - Piazza Venezia  - Vittoriano view
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Located at the foot of Capitoline Hill, Piazza Venezia is one of the main squares of Rome, its traffic flowing from five different main streets. Of these big avenues that arrive in Piazza Venezia are Via dei Fori imperiali, Via del Corso and Via del Teatro di Marcello. Directly in front of the piazza is the Altar della Patria, also known as the “Vittoriano”, a huge monument dedicated to the Italian Unification. There is also the National Monument dedicated to Victor Emmanuel II in honor of his crowning as the first king of a unified Italy. This huge monument, built between 1885 and 1911, is 135 meters wide and 75 meters high and is made of white marble from Botticino in Brescia. On the facade we can see many Corinthian columns which represent each Italian region while on each side of the monument can be found a fountain representing the seas bordering Italy: the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Adriatic Sea.

Things to see

In terms of aesthetic, the piazza blends several types of Italian architecture from the 19th century and Mussolini’s time. In fact, Mussolini held many of his speeches in this square. The construction of the whole Piazza Venezia required the demolition of ancient Roman ruins as well as several Medieval buildings, causing great controversy from start to finish. Many Roman citizens nowadays have given the piazza and monument amusing but rather unflattering nicknames.

Capitoline Hill

Rome - Capitoline Hill - statue
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Capitoline Hill is the most famous of the seven hills of Rome; another name often associated to it is the “Hill of Gods”. Capitoline Hill is composed of two summits separated by a gap. During the Roman Empire, Nero built his arch in the gap between the two summits.

On one of the summits once stood the Temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus, the most important temple on the hill. It was not only a place of worship but also the place were Romans used to keep their treasure and precious items. The Temple of Jupiter was destroyed and rebuilt several time until it eventually declined into disuse and ruin during the 5th and 6th centuries. Some say that when Emperor Vespasian rebuilt the Temple of Jupiter, he helped the masons himself. To reach Jupiter’s temple, people had to take the Gemonian Stairs. These stairs were also a place where people were condemned to death sentence and then thrown down the steps toward the Tiber River.

Things to see

On the other summit, where now stands the Basilica of St. Mary of the Altar of Heaven, there was the Temple of Juno, the protector and special counselor of the state. Romans used to make coins for their currency here; in fact, the practice started in this temple. Another interesting thing about this temple is that according to legend, the Gauls arrived and climbed the Hill to try to steal Roman treasure but Juno’s sacred geese cried out so loudly that the Romans were alerted of the Gauls’ attempt.

Nowadays we can reach the Capitol Square from a huge staircase named Cordonata. On the summit now stands Rome’s City Hall along with the Roman Museum of the Capitoline Hill. The equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius is situated in the middle of the Piazza del Campidoglio, where these buildings are situated, and cannot be missed!

Circus Maximus

Rome - Circus Maximus

Circus Maximus is the biggest Roman arena and the oldest circus from Ancient Rome. It is located between the Palatine Hill and the Aventine Hill in the Murcia Valley. Circus Maximus was famous for its chariot races; even if today many see it as some mere ruins, we can still appreciate how big it was for its time with its 600 meters in length and 80 meters in width.

Circus Maximus was able to welcome up to 250 000 people when it was originally built, and even more after some renovations were made. It was first used during the Etruscans era in the 6th century B.C. Julius Caesar later extended the Circus and added a gap between the arena and the bleachers in order to protect people watching the race.

Things to see

After the big fire of Rome in 64 A.D., the seats were rebuilt out of stone and marble while the arena itself was enlarged to be able to welcome up to 300 000 people. In the middle of the arena was the “Spina”, which divided the arena into two different parts. The Spina was a small wall covered by statues, fountains, columns and other embellishments, along with Augustus’ Obelisk.  This obelisk, the first ever brought over from Egypt, still exists and can be seen today on Piazza del Popolo. The chariots racers would ride around this obelisk in the middle of the Spina.

It is actually still possible to see vestiges of the starting point of the chariots if you go on the side of Viale Aventino. The last race happened in 549 A.D. but after that the Circus Maximus slowly fell into disuse and decay. Nowadays, it has become a large green space where people go to jog or exercise; concerts and other events are sometimes held there.

Palatine Hill

Rome - Palatine Hill

The Palatine Hill is the most centrally located among the seven famous hills of Rome. It is positioned near the Colosseum, the Circus Maximus and the Roman Forum, and was the home of several emperors. Indeed, Augustus, Cicero and Marcus Antonius all built their palaces on this hill. From the top, it offers visitors a very nice view of the Eternal City.

According to legend, it is on this hill that the twins Romulus and Remus were discovered by their mythical she-wolf mother. It is also on this hill that Romulus decided to found Rome, so Palatine Hill is generally considered as the birthplace of the Roman Empire.

Things to see

During the Roman Republic, Palatine Hill became the most popular place to live. In fact, the name “Palatine” is derived from the word “palace” since so many were built. Many chose to live here firstly because it offers a wonderful view of the city and secondly because at the time, people believed there was more pure air here than lower on the hill where laborers worked. They believed that they would get less sick thanks to this pure air.

During the Middle Ages, several churches and convents were also built on the hill. Later, the hill became the property of the cardinal Alessandro Farnese, who had a nice botanical garden constructed upon the ruins.