Ancient Rome Tour with Colosseum Arena Floor & Catacombs Tours

Explore the history of Rome and save money with our combined Colosseum, Forum, and Catacombs tour

Travel Flexibly 4.9 / 5 See All 11 Reviews · 8.00h 15 max · Rome, Italy

Fascinated by all things ancient Rome? Want to see several of the most iconic sights in just a day? This small group day tour was made for you! With a super knowledgeable Roman guide, you’ll step back in time and skip the line at the eerie Catacombs, the Roman Forum, and the mighty Colosseum. That's where you'll get special access to walk onto the Arena Floor like the gladiators once did. There’s no better way to immerse yourself in the history of Rome than on this combination tour!

Tour Details
  • Explore the history of Ancient Rome
  • Private, air-conditioned transport
  • Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini
  • Catacombs of St. Callixtus
  • Ancient Appian Way
  • Privileged entry to the Colosseum
  • Arena Floor access
  • The Colosseum's upper tiers
  • The Roman Forum
  • Arch of Titus
  • Temple of Julius Caesar
  • Basilica of Maxentius and Constantine

After meeting your friendly local guide in Piazza Barberini, you’ll set off to explore the ancient history of Rome! First, you’ll take a private transfer along the historic Appian Way—where you'll stop for a stroll and some photos—to the eerie underground burial sites known as the Roman Catacombs. You’ll also visit the incredible bone displays of the Capuchin Crypts.

Next up, you’ll visit the awe-inspiring Colosseum with VIP access to the reconstructed Arena Floor itself, and the chance to walk through the infamous Gladiator's Gate. Finally, you’ll see the true seat of power in Ancient Rome, as you visit the Roman Forum. You’ll be able to skip the line at each attraction, and your guide will share fascinating stories of the people who once dominated the Empire.

Full-day History of Rome Tour Description

  • Skip-the-line Catacombs and Capuchin Crypts tour

  • Skip-the-line Colosseum tour with Arena Floor access and Gladiator's Gate

  • Skip-the-line Roman Forum tour

  • Guided visit to Palatine Hill

  • Private, air-conditioned transportation

  • A fun, knowledgeable, local guide

  • Maximum group size of 15

The Catacombs and Capuchin Crypts are sites of religious significance, so knees and shoulders must be covered for both men and women at all times. This dress code is strictly enforced and if you don't comply then you run the risk of missing this part of the tour. We know that Rome gets quite hot during the summertime, so consider bringing a shawl/scarf/sweater with you to cover your knees and shoulders when necessary.

Capuchin Crypts

These underground crypts are truly unique and strangely beautiful, containing the skeletal remains of 3,700 bodies believed to be Capuchin friars who were buried by their order between 1500 and 1870. Their bones weren't just laid to rest here, but arranged into elaborate displays that have been preserved to this day.

The underground crypt is divided into six chapels: Crypt of the Resurrection, Crypt of the Skulls, Crypt of the Pelvises, Crypt of the Leg Bones and Thigh Bones, and Crypt of the Three Skeletons. Lit only by dim natural light seeping in through cracks and small fluorescent lamps, it's all pretty creepy but provides an experience you'll remember long after your vacation is over.

The Catacombs of St. Callixtus

First up on your tour, you'll take an air-conditioned private vehicle to the Roman Catacombs—perhaps Rome's eeriest attraction. It’s here that you’ll stop to see the above-ground cemeteries of the Catacombs of St. Callixtus. Then it’s time to head underground to see extensive network of burial sites at one of the most popular catacombs in Rome.

Over time, these catacombs became the coveted burial place as prominent martyrs and pontiffs were laid to rest here. Your guide will lead you to the crypts filled with popes from the third century as well as an area with impeccably preserved paintings.

The Catacombs of St. Callixtus are typically closed on Wednesdays and sometimes close on other days too. Not to worry though, your guide will take you to another incredible catacombs site if your tour lands on one of these days.

The Appian Way and Aurelian Walls

Emperor Aurelian built a defensive wall around Rome during the third century to defend the city against invading barbarians. You’ll pass the Aurelian Walls in your climate-controlled vehicle and see them up close. In addition, you’ll walk a small stretch of the ancient Appian Way. Leading all the way to Puglia in Southern Italy, the Appian Way is one of the most important ancient Roman roads.

This road was also the location of the crucifixion of 10,000 slaves during the revolt of Spartacus. Thankfully, you won't see any crucifixions today, but your guide will retell the story for you and make it come alive.

Colosseum Tour with Arena Floor Access

Next, you'll travel back to central Rome to see inside the most famous site of all. Taking a Colosseum tour while in Rome is obviously a must, but this one is even more special. Your guide will share fascinating stories as you explore the first and second tiers of the Colosseum, where Rome’s most noble citizens mingled and watched the gruesome gladiator matches.

But what most visitors won't experience is stepping out onto the Arena Floor, where you'll get to follow in the footsteps of gladiators! This is the part of the Colosseum where bloody battles took place over a thousand years ago, and you'll have the chance to walk through the infamous Gladiator's Gate where warriors would enter and (if they were lucky) leave the arena. As you look up at the huge arena around you, you can imagine the sheer exhilaration and terror they must have felt as they prepared to fight for their lives.

Roman Colosseum History

After the Arena Floor, go on a journey to the Colosseum's first and second levels. See where emperors sat and learn the rules of the gladiatorial games for both competitors and spectators. Learn why the ancient amphitheater was named the Colosseum, plus many more interesting facts. You'll spend an amazing 1.5 hours exploring the top attraction in Rome with your super-knowledgeable guide.

Ancient Roman Forum

Want to trace the steps of Julius Caesar? Here’s your chance. Finally, you'll visit the ancient Roman Forum, just a short walk from the Colosseum. This is the area that used to serve as ancient Rome’s political hub. Your guide will show you the Forum’s main archaeological highlights, such as the Arch of Titus and the Roman Senate House, while bringing this fascinating site to life with stories of the Emperors and politicians who once shaped history here.

Climb Palatine Hill

From the ancient downtown, your guide will lead you to a place we like to think of as the Beverly Hills of Ancient Rome. Climb the Palatine Hill and take in the views over Circus Maximus. You'll explore the 2,000 year old palaces and learn stories of Rome's rich and famous.

By the end of the tour, you'll leave the Colosseum and Forum with a camera full of incredible pictures and a mind full of knowledge about life in ancient Rome.

What you get with this tour
Skip-the-line Catacombs and Capuchin Crypts tour
Skip-the-line Colosseum tour with Arena Floor access and Gladiator's Gate
Skip-the-line Roman Forum tour
Guided visit to Palatine Hill
Private, air-conditioned transportation
A fun, knowledgeable, local guide
Maximum group size of 15
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11 total reviews

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4.9/5 (based on 11 reviews)
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Great Tours with Great Guides
21 September 2022
R
Reviewed by
Robert Dullnig

Both Arturo and Ilenora (?) were great and personable guides with a great command of English. My only complaint was there was some confusion on when the afternoon tour started.

What wonderful way to see Rome!
17 September 2022
D
Reviewed by
Dana Matte

Fiona led this interesting tour and did a fabulous job. We started on time and she was very knowledgeable and friendly. Would recommend without hesitation.

29 August 2022
K
Reviewed by
Karen Unruh

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Frequently Asked Questions

Where to meet?

Meet your friendly guide in front of the Fontana del Tritone at Piazza Barberini. A representative will be there holding a sign with our company name on it.

What to bring?

Wear comfortable shoes, bring water, and apply plenty of sunscreen in the summer. In spring and autumn, you might prefer a light jacket. Please also ensure that you can cover your knees and shoulders at religious sites.

Will we see bones?

Yes! This tour visits the Church of Santa Maria della Concezione which houses a 17th-century ossuary under it. There you will see the bones of nearly 4,000 Capuchin friars!

Why doesn't this tour run on Sundays?

Via Appia Antica (the road we travel on to access the catacombs) is closed on Sundays.

Why do I have to pay for my 6-and-under child?

Sorry about this. We're parents too and we understand! Unfortunately, they must be seated due to traffic regulations, which means they occupy their own seat in the vehicle. For added safety, we even bring a car seat for children who require one.

Is there a dress code to enter the religious sites on this tour?

We ask both men and women to cover knees and shoulders, otherwise you may be refused entry to religious sites and miss out on a portion of your tour. We understand the summers in Rome can be hot, so a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you. That way, you can cover your knees and shoulders when necessary.

What if the Arena Floor is closed?

Sometimes the Colosseum closes down access to restricted areas with very little notice due to rain or some sort of repair going on. In this case, we will visit other areas and the tour will run with the same duration. Sorry, but we do not offer a refund if the Arena Floor is closed.

What if I have doubts about my mobility on this tour?

Although there will be breaks, this tour does require you to walk with your guide and group. There will also be some old stairways and uneven floors along the way. If you have any doubts about your mobility, we strongly suggest you take a comfortable Private Colosseum Tour.

Will my tour be canceled if it rains?

We run guided tours rain or shine. In cases of heavy rainfall, the Colosseum management may close the Arena Floor at the last minute for safety. We do our best to make alternate Arena Floor arrangements, but we cannot guarantee a substitute date. If your group is subject to closures by the Colosseum and does not get access to the Arena Floor, we still continue on a 2.5-hour tour of the Colosseum and Roman Forum. There is no refund given if the Arena Floor is closed for this tour.

What to bring?

Wear comfortable shoes, bring water, and apply plenty of sunscreen in the summer. In spring and autumn, you might prefer a light jacket. Please also ensure that you can cover your knees and shoulders at religious sites.

Where to meet?

Meet your friendly guide in front of the Fontana del Tritone at Piazza Barberini. A representative will be there holding a sign with our company name on it.

What catacomb does this tour visit?

Usually the Catacombs of St. Callixtus, although if there is any closure we will substitute with another catacomb site nearby. Please note that the Catacombs of St. Callixtus are typically closed on Wednesdays.

Can I visit the catacombs at night?

Absolutely! Check out our VIP Rome Catacombs Night Tour with Capuchin Crypts.

Total: $122.95

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24-hr cancellation on group tours! Learn more about our cancellation policy

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$102.95 / per person
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