Whether you’re journeying to the Eternal City to see the sacred Vatican Museums, explore the Colosseum, or try some incredible cuisine, Rome has tons of attractions for all visitors. But with so much to see, what’s the best way to do it all? In this guide, we cover the best Rome tours we offer so you not only see it all but get the most out of your vacation.
Pro Tip: It’s easier to organize your trip when you have all your resources in one place. Create a browser folder and bookmark this post in your browser. We also have a dedicated guide to all things Rome where you’ll find everything you need to plan your dream vacation.
How Many Tours Should I Take?
Guided tours are one of the best ways to get truly acquainted with the city you’re visiting. We recommend you add at least one guided tour to your schedule per day.
A great tour will run anywhere from 2 to 4 hours and leave you enriched and energized by what you just visited. We hire amazing guides who are passionate about giving you the best possible experience—both learning and fun!
Our Best Vatican Tours
The Vatican Museums is the biggest museum in Rome and can welcome as many as 19,000 visitors on a typical day. That means crowds, lines, and of course, congestion.
Luckily, all our Vatican tours come with skip-the-line tickets that relieve the burden of waiting in queues and entering at crowded times. We even have a special agreement with the Vatican that enables us to offer you entry during off-peak hours.
Additionally, all of our tours include entry into the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica (some tours offer entrance but not a tour of the basilica—see the tour details). We recommend entering as early as possible, but we offer Vatican tours in the afternoon as well if that’s what suits you best. Check out our full guide to the best Vatican tours for more details and maps. Here are our top recommended Vatican tours:
Detailed Itinerary Vatican in a Day Tour (5 hours)
This one is for the art nerds! The tour dives deep into the magnificent artworks housed in the Vatican Museums, Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel, the Pinacoteca, and more. You’ll even get to discover the hidden masterpieces by Raphael, Da Vinci, and Guido Reni that millions of visitors never see.
Super Early Vatican Gold Tour (2 hours)
For early risers or anyone who would like to see the treasures of the Vatican before the general public enters the museums. It truly is a special experience seeing the Sistine Chapel without the crowds.
Privileged Entrance Vatican Tour with Sistine Chapel (3.5 hours)
This tour combines our best-selling classic Vatican experience with the added privilege of early access to the Vatican and includes areas that are off-limits to the general public, thanks to our close relationship with the Holy See.
Skip-The-Line Vatican Tour with Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica (3 hours)
This tour has flexible start times throughout the day (and is the least expensive), so you’ll still be able to skip the line, see all the top attractions, and have the flexibility to visit whenever is best for your schedule.
Our Best Colosseum Tours
Right up there with the Vatican Museums, visiting the Colosseum is without a doubt one of the best things to do in Rome. This grandiose structure stands in the center of Rome, reminding us of the city’s rich history.
The Colosseum is the largest amphitheater in the world and can hold up to 70,000 spectators. When the Colosseum was still used for gladiatorial matches, it was the scene of many fights between gladiators and animals—often to the death.
All of our Colosseum tours enter the monument through a back entrance, making sure you not only skip the lines but also enter through a shorter security line. Check out our full guide to the best Colosseum tours for more details and maps. Here are our top recommended Colosseum tours:
VIP Colosseum at Night Tour with Underground and Arena Floor (2.5 hours)
This one is for the night owls. The tour ends between 10 pm and midnight, depending on the start time. You’ll get the opportunity to experience the Colosseum at night without the crowds.
Colosseum Underground Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill (3.5 hours)
This is our most exclusive Colosseum tour. Few visitors get the chance to explore the Underground area because it’s an active archeological site with extremely limited access, but this is your chance!
Arena Floor Colosseum Tour with Roman Forum (3 hours)
This tour is for the budget traveler that wants exclusive access and great value. You get skip-the-line access and three areas of the Colosseum in one tour.
Colosseum Highlights Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill (3 hours)
For no-frills travelers that want a great guide and great value, this is a great option. This complete Colosseum tour provides a concise and engaging overview of ancient Rome.
Our Best Rome Tours
Part of the reason we love Rome so much is that its robust history is crammed into the center of the city. It’s all relatively close together and walkable (within reason).
Once you’ve visited the Colosseum and Vatican, you’ll still have a lot left to see and taste! Could you really come all the way to Italy and not take a guided tour through some of the most celebrated cuisines in the world?
Our most popular food tour is a walk through Trastevere and other parts of the city center (see number one). And for the more hands-on among you, we also offer a pasta-making class that has incredible reviews (see number four).
Another great way to experience Rome is on our electric bike tour through the city. See the center in a few hours and learn your way around—you’ll definitely find some local treasures to revisit (see number two).
Another must-see attraction is the Roman Catacombs. They’re located outside the city near the Appian way, which gives you the perfect opportunity to explore beyond the city center (see number three).
1. Local Foodie Tour in Trastevere with Wine and Dinner
This is our classic Rome food tour that we recommend to anyone who wants a true foodie experience in the Italian capital.
Expect to try some mouth-watering Roman pizza, classic street food such as filetto di baccala, and a sit-down Italian pasta dinner with refreshing gelato for dessert.
It’s a great way to learn the local way of doing things and find out why you’ll rarely find salt and pepper on the table will dining in Rome.
2. Electric E-Bike Tour of Rome
What better way to cruise around the city? A battery-powered bike to get you over the seven hills of Rome and a pedal bike that allows you to take all the back streets and pedestrian routes.
This is a really cool way to get a ton of great photos and fully immerse yourself in the city. Your English-speaking guide will identify lots of great places to eat and drink along the way.
3. Rome Catacombs Tour with Bone Crypt
The Roman Catacombs were used for hundreds of years to bury the dead. They were primarily used by Christians and in large numbers—some catacombs are home to half a million tombs and burial plots!
Your English-speaking guide and small group will explore the Catacomb of Domitilla, which boasts frescoes over 1500 years old and an ancient chapel. You’ll go deep below ground and probably wonder why the graves were so small?
This experience also brings you to the Appian way where you’ll walk upon the very same stones as many Romans like Julius Caesar!
You’ll finish your journey through the dark history of the Roman dead with a visit to the Capuchin Crypts. This is a famous crypt where the Capuchin Monks buried thousands of their dead—although a better word may be arranged.
4. Rome Walking Tour with Pasta Making and Lunch
If you’re looking to explore the city of Rome and its cuisine, look no further. On this walking tour through downtown Rome, you’ll visit some of Rome’s main sites like the Spanish Steps, Pantheon, Piazza Navona, and Trevi Fountain.
You’ll also join a local chef and learn how to make traditional Italian pasta and the art of crafting the perfect tiramisu. And, not to worry, wine is included.