Colosseum Underground Tour with Arena Floor and Ancient Rome: VIP Experience

Duration
5hours
Inclusions
Small Group
Tour Guide
Entrance Fees
Headsets
Language
English
Max Group Size
24 people
Transportation
Transportation from your hotel or lodging to the activity check in.
No
$
113
41
/ Adult
Available:
Daily
Time:
10:30 AM
Through E
Response rate: 
80%
Response time:
several hours
Highlights
  • Entrance to the Arena Floor
  • Colosseum Underground (also called Hypogeum from the Latin language)
  • Via Sacra
  • Roman Forum
  • Arch of Constantine
  • Palatine Hill
Preview Description
Exclusive Access to the Underground tunnels of the Colosseum & the Arena. Explore the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill with experts.
 
Description
Experience the gladiator games to the fullest visiting the underground levels of the Colosseum with its trapdoor and mechanical elevators. Then our tour takes you to walk on the arena (Latin for sand, which originally covered the stage), discovering how the gladiators fought and who they were in the place were the drama unfolded. Learn about their role in Ancient Rome as you explore the seats of power in the Roman Forum and the palaces of the elite on the Palatine Hill. 

Relive the cheers of the crowd and see the imperial box where emperors attended the games. Witness the exotic landscapes and never-before-seen animals that recreated the recently conquered provinces of the Empire for the audience, understanding why the combats were so popular.

Wander through the spellbinding architecture of the Colosseum (at the time called Flavian Amphitheater) which was amazingly built in just 10 years. Learn about the ancient Roman culture and the plot against Julius Caesar in front of the temple dedicated to his divine cult, opposite to the where Mark Antony gave his speech against his murderers. Walk deep into the Roman Forum, the political heart of Ancient Rome, exploring the Senate and other majestic temples. Learn about the lives of famous emperors, as your guide will take you to the Palatine Hill, where you will explore the imposing buildings of the Emperors. Your tour also includes the awesome Renaissance Farnese Gardens and its Aviaries reopened in March 2018.

When in Rome don't miss our tour of the Colosseum's underground tunnels and the arena floor!
Marvel at ancient stage machinery capable of amazing special effects, mechanical elevators centuries ahead of their time, trapdoors, and an incredibly complex system of underground tunnels below the arena that made the Colosseum's spectacles possible. These were amongst the ingenious inventions that we will see on our walking tour which helped ensure the incredible popularity of the games. Along with our expert guides, learn how the gladiator games unfolded and how their rituals of violence were conceived as Imperial propaganda to unify the incredibly diverse populations, languages, and cultures of the Roman Empire.

Interact directly with your guide, for this tour mostly archaeologists, ready to answer all of your questions about the amazing ancient ruins you will visit and taking you to most spectacular viewpoints for best photos.

Re-live an entire day's entertainment on our Colosseum tour
Learn about the stages of the games, the processions and the salutes, and the battles between ferocious beasts and gladiators made spectacular by the surprise entrance of animals into the arena through secret trap-doors. You’ll be amazed by stories of the fight to the death between gladiators amidst the cheers of a delirious crowd, and the capricious decisions of the audience or of the emperor to save or condemn a defeated gladiator according to their whim. Walk on the arena floor, not usually open to the public and reserved specially for you on this tour. Gaze up from the viewpoint of the gladiators as they breathed their last.

Enter into the private life of the gladiators
Our tour of Ancient Rome will take you into the daily lives of the gladiators, showcasing the manner of their combats, their weapons, and the origins of these men who often came from the remote provinces of the empire. The success of the games was ensured by the multi-ethnic society of the time. On our Colosseum Tour you will also learn about their daily training, which took place in the barracks where the gladiators lived, equipped with a small arena as you will see at the Ludus Magnus, one of their living quarters near the Colosseum.

Admire the perfection of the Colosseum from its Upper Ring
It is only from above that we can fully appreciate the imposing magnitude of this remarkable edifice. From here, all its arcades and marbles are laid out before us; its dramatic spaces reveal a colossal feat of engineering. The Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheater) was built over ten years on a site which was previously part of Nero's Golden House, the Domus Aurea - which you can now also explore on our special Domus Aurea tour! Visiting the Coliseum from an upper level you will enjoy panoramic views of its spectacular architecture.

Uncover the daily life and the political struggles of ancient Rome on our Roman Forum tour
This great valley was the political heart of ancient Rome. Here we will retrace the daily life and politics of the ancient Romans, beginning at the Senate, where the most memorable debates of the Roman Republic took place. You will enter the rooms and the stunningly beautiful garden of the House of the Vestal Virgins. On our group tour of the Roman Forum you will discover who they were, gaze upon their marble portraits that still survive today, and learn of the cruel destiny that sometimes awaited them. In the Basilicas of Julia and Maxentius, seats of the courthouses, our guide will bring you into the spaces of the great public trials during the time of Cicero and Caesar. At the temples of Saturn, Castor and Pollux, and Antoninus and Faustina, we will meet the Roman gods and explore the enigma of a Christian church built into the structure of a pagan temple. The innovations of Roman engineers will amaze you on the Via Sacra, still marked today with the wheel-ruts of carriages that passed over it for centuries. Meanwhile, the film-strips of antiquity carved into the marble of the Arch of Titus and Arch of Septimius Severus, tell of the great conquests of Imperial Rome. At the site where it happened, we will re-live timeless events such as the funeral of Julius Caesar near the Temple of Caesar and the decapitation of Cicero in the central square. Finally, we will explain the political rise of Augustus, who ended the Roman Republic and founded an empire.

Explore the luxurious villas of the emperors on our Palatine Hill
The Palatine Hill is still for the most part excluded from the itineraries of other tour companies. Wonderfully preserved even today, it's a shame to neglect this beautiful part of the ancient city, a place that for centuries hosted the exclusive residences of the Roman aristocracy, until the emperors appropriated it to construct their colossal villas. Why was it such a desirable spot? Simple. The views from here down into the Forum, the Colosseum, the Circus Maximus, and indeed the entire city are unmatched. Our group tour will start with the origins of Rome, near the Huts of Romulus from the 8th century BC, which were later moved to the House of Augustus for obvious political reasons. We will take you to see the majestic architectures of the Imperial residences, with their gigantic colonnades. Amongst them the House of Augustus, the Flavian Palace, the Severian baths and the great Stadium. You will uncover original furnishings fashioned from precious marbles and statues in the Palatine Museum, and retrace the lives of the most famous and extravagant emperors who ruled here, men such as Nero and Domitian.

Our guided visit includes also the Aviaries and the Farnese Gardens (Orti Farnesiani), reopened in March 2018. The main Farnese Palace, a hidden gem in itself, was constructed on top of the ancient imperial palaces in one of the most spectacular corners of the Palatine Hill, with a series of stepped terraces going down to the Roman Forum.

The Underground Colosseum is reserved exclusively for us.

During your hour-long Colosseum Underground Tour you will be in a group of a maximum of 24 visitors.
 
Activity Level
This is a walking tour, taking you inside the Colosseum and through the archaeological sites of Ancient Rome. There are a lot of steps and uneven surfaces. Wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water. Being a group tour everybody will move in a certain pace together, if you have limited mobility, please contact us before booking.
 
Places Visited
The Via Sacra (Latin: Via Sacra) (Sacred Road) was the main street of ancient Rome, leading from the top of the Capitoline Hill, through some of the most important religious sites ... moreof the Forum (where it is the widest street), to the Colosseum.

The road was part of the traditional route of the Roman Triumph that began on the outskirts of the city and proceeded through the Roman Forum. In the 5th century BC, the road was supported by a super-structure to protect it from the rain.[citation needed] Later it was paved and during the reign of Nero it was lined with colonnades.

The road provided the setting for many deeds and misdeeds of Rome's history, the solemn religious festivals, the magnificent triumphs of victorious generals, and the daily throng assembling in the Basilicas to chat, throw dice, engage in business, or secure justice. Many prostitutes lined the street as well, looking for potential customers.
Type:
Attraction, Cultural, Historic
The Arch of Constantine (Italian: Arco di Costantino) is a triumphal arch in Rome, situated between the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill. It was erected by the Roman Senate to commemorate ... moreConstantine I's victory over Maxentius at the Battle of Milvian Bridge in 312. Dedicated in 315, it is the largest Roman triumphal arch. The arch spans the Via triumphalis, the way taken by the emperors when they entered the city in triumph.

Though dedicated to Constantine, much of the decorative material incorporated earlier work from the time of the emperors Trajan (98–117), Hadrian (117–138) and Marcus Aurelius (161–180), and is thus a collage. The last of the existing triumphal arches in Rome, it is also the only one to make extensive use of spolia, reusing several major reliefs from 2nd century imperial monuments, which give a striking and famous stylistic contrast to the sculpture newly created for the arch. This earned it the derisive nickname of Cornacchia di Esopo Aesop's Crow.

The arch is 21 m high, 25.9 m wide and 7.4 m deep. It has three archways, the central one being 11.5 m high and 6.5 m wide and the lateral archways 7.4 m by 3.4 m each. Above the archways is placed the attic, composed of brickwork reveted (faced) with marble. A staircase within the arch is entered from a door at some height from the ground, on the west side, facing the Palatine Hill. The general design with a main part structured by detached columns and an attic with the main inscription above is modelled after the example of the Arch of Septimius Severus on the Roman Forum.
Type:
Attraction, Cultural, Historic
Roman Forum Here we have a great valley, the political heart of ancient Rome, where the daily life of the ancient Romans unfolded. The Republic revolved around the Senate, where giant, ... morerichly decorated spaces still resound with the voices of the great senators that unleashed war and brokered peace in the Mediterranean. While the House of the Vestals introduces us to the only female religious order in Rome, the via Sacra, still marked by the wheels of carts that traversed it for centuries, helps us understand the Romans’ amazing engineering capabilities. In front of the Temple of Julius Caesar we will be catapulted into the story of one of the greatest political murders of all time. Nearby, the temple of Antoninus and Faustina tells us of the extent of the Roman empire, with its rare marbles and its inscriptions. The images carved into the Arch of Titus tell of the conquest of Jerusalem and the transfer of its ancient treasures to Rome, fascinating histories that your expert guide will explain.

The Roman Forum, also known by its Latin name Forum Romanum (Italian: Foro Romano), is a rectangular forum (plaza) surrounded by the ruins of several important ancient government buildings at the center of the city of Rome. Citizens of the ancient city referred to this space, originally a marketplace, as the Forum Magnum, or simply the Forum.

For centuries the Forum was the center of day-to-day life in Rome: the site of triumphal processions and elections; the venue for public speeches, criminal trials, and gladiatorial matches; and the nucleus of commercial affairs. Here statues and monuments commemorated the city's great men. The teeming heart of ancient Rome, it has been called the most celebrated meeting place in the world, and in all history. Located in the small valley between the Palatine and Capitoline Hills, the Forum today is a sprawling ruin of architectural fragments and intermittent archaeological excavations attracting 4.5 million or more sightseers yearly.
Type:
Attraction, Cultural, Historic
The Palatine Hill is the centremost of the Seven Hills of Rome and is one of the most ancient parts of the city. It stands 40 metres above the Roman Forum, looking down upon it on ... moreone side, and upon the Circus Maximus on the other. From the time of Augustus Imperial palaces were built here.

Rome has its origins on the Palatine. Excavations show that people have lived in the area since the 10th century BC. Excavations performed on the hill in 1907 and again in 1948 unearthed a collection of huts believed to have been used for funerary purposes between the 9th and 7th century BC approximating the time period when the city of Rome was founded.

The hill has a strong link to Roman mythology. It is believed that on Palatine Hill, the twins Romulus and Remus were found in the Lupercal Cave by their four-legged shepherd mother, who raised them. Ultimately, this is where Romulus decided to build the city. Palatine Hill, Rome
The Palatine Hill today. Therefore, it was on this hill that the Roman Empire began.

From the start of the Empire (27 BC) Augustus built his palace there and the hill gradually became the exclusive domain of emperors; the ruins of the palaces of at least Augustus (27 BC – 14 AD), Tiberius (14 – 37 AD) and Domitian (81 – 96 AD) can still be seen.
Type:
Attraction, Cultural, Historic
  • The construction of the Colosseum was started in 72 AD by Emperor Vespasian and it was completed in 80 AD, a year after the death of Vespasian.
The Colosseum is one of Rome's most famous land marks. The structure is an elliptical amphitheatre located in the center of Rome. The colosseum was built from concrete and stone .It ... moreis considered to be the largest amphitheatre in the world. The construction of the Colosseum started in 72 AD by the Roman Emperor Vespasian. The building was completed in 80 AD, a year after the death of Emperor Vespasian.

The colloseum was used for gladiatorial contests and public shows and games such as animal hunts, mock sea battles, gladiator battles and executions. It seated 50,000 people. The Roman emperors used the Colosseum for the entertainment of the public with free games. The games symbolized power and they were used by the ruling emperor in order to increase his popularity. These games were held for an entire day or several days continuously. The shows usually started with comical acts and displays of exotic animals such as lions and bears and concluded with fights to the death between the animals and gladiators. The fighters were prisoners of war, slaves, or convicted criminals. The gladiatorial games continued until Christianity gradually put an end to the gory and deadly games.

The Colosseum was built on the area of an artificial lake. At the late 6th century a small church was built into the structure of the amphitheatre. In 1934, the Colosseum was damaged by an earthquake which resulted in the collapse of the outer south. The stones from the Colleseum were then reused to build palaces, churches,hospitals and other structures in Rome. Some of the famous structures which were built using the stones are Palazzo Farnese and St. Peter’s Basilica.

Church officials in Rome sought a productive use for the Colosseum during the 16thand 17th century. Pope Sixtus V had planned to turn The Colosseum into a wool factory in order to offer employment opportunities to prostitutes in Rome but the plans did not come to fruition due to his premature death. In 1671, Cardinal Altieri authorized the Colosseum to be used for bullfights but the public opposed this idea.

The Colosseum continued to be subject to different uses and renovations as nearly every leader of Rome had his own ideas concerning the use of the compound. The Roman emperors used the Colosseum to entertain the public with free games. The games symbolized prestige and power and they were used by the ruling emperor as a way of increasing his popularity. These games were held for a whole day or even several days continuously. In most cases, the shows started with comical acts and displays of exotic animals which ended with fights to death between the animals and gladiators. The fighters were normally slaves, prisoners of war or condemned criminals. The gladiatorial games continued until Christianity gradually put an end to the parts of the games which led to the death of people.

The modern Colosseum has been renovated, redecorated and painted. The Colosseum is used to host large events although the space inside is limited. During events with great attendance, the audience sits outside the Colosseum. The Colosseum is also a major tourist attraction in Rome with thousands of tourists visiting it every year to view the interior of the arena. Entrance for citizens of the European Union is partially subsidized, and the entrance is free for European Union citizens below the age of 18 or over 65. The upper floor of the outer wall of The Colosseum has a museum that is dedicated to Eros. Part of the arena floor had been re-floored and looks fabulous.

The Colosseum is also the site of Roman Catholic ceremonies in the 20th and 21stcenturies. For instance, Pope Benedict XVI led the Stations of the Cross ceremony called the Scriptural Way of the Cross at The Colosseum on Good Fridays. There was an agreement between the local official and Diego Della Valle, in 2011, to sponsor €25 million restoration of The Colosseum. 

Today it is one of the most popular tourist sites in Rome. Be sure to come and visit the Colleseum!
Type:
Attraction, Cultural, Historic
Features:
Bathroom
Rates
Per
Type
Price
Info
AdultGroup Tour
$
113
41
Over 18 years old
Student
$
96
23
Under 24 years old
Child
$
96
23
Under 18 years old
Infant
$
0
Under 5 years old
Schedule
Dates
Time
Daily10:30 AM
Payment & Cancellation
Cancellation Policy
Custom policy
  • Cancellations made 15 days before will be fully refunded except for a service fee of 3%.
  • Cancellations made 8 days before will be refunded 50% of the amount paid.
  • Cancellations made at a later date will not be refunded.
11 reviews   0 comments
Rating
Was the tour accurately described on the webiste? In other words did it meet your expectations?
(5.0 of 5)
This was a fantastic Tour. The Guide was excellent! We were glad of the lunch break as it was really hot. My husband had not flown for 30 years and seeing this tour made him determined to get here. The Tour did not disappoint!
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The underground portion of the tour and the end portion where we walked around the forum was fabulous! It was a one of a kind experience, one we will remember all our lives, walking in the paths of past emperors, warriors and gladiators. The middle part was a bit long, especially in the hot sun, and with teenagers.
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What a great experience we had with Guia! She was full of knowledge, answered everyone's questions, was very friendly, and everything was on time and went smoothly. The entire tour was phenomenal. The underground portion of the tour was very interesting and informative, and would recommend for anyone coming to Rome to definitely take this tour.
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We had the pleasure of being on a tour of the Colosseum and Forum in Rome with John Tinto. John's knowledge of the history of the area and enthusiasm to share it with his guests was top notch. Besides being informative, his presentation was engaging and he was very responsive to all questions and comments. We are so glad to have had the opportunity to walk around with John and learn from him! Thanks ... more John!!!
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GREAT TOUR! There was little that could have been better. Our guide Federico was very knowledgeable and very aware of the group. We went in the middle of August and he was constantly making sure that when we needed to stop and discuss anything, that we were in the shade and could fill up our water bottles. Thank you for the wonderful experience!
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What a great tour of Ancient Rome! Our guide was very knowledgeable and patient. The tour started at 10:30. There was a 45 minute break at 1:30 to get some lunch. We finished around 4 / 4:30. A long tour, but engaging all along the way. I would recommend this tour to anyone. You skip the long lines for tickets and you also get a special view of the colosseum from the underground. I was pleased with ... more it all. Thanks to Guia. Harold.
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Our tour guide, John Tinto, was an excellent, well informed guide who answered all questions in a professional polite manner. The trip was made all the better because of John and the facts he told about various parts of the tour, made the whole trip that bit more exciting. Brilliant
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Our guide, Federico, on the tour of the Colosseum Underground and Palatine Hill was fantastic right from the start by taking time to meet all of us at the meet-up location prior to the start. He went at a comfortable pace, spoke clearly into his microphone enabling us all to hear clearly. Federico demonstrated a wealth of knowledge about Rome's archeology. He was very kind making sure older guests ... more kept up with the group without slowing down its pace. My twelve year old was pleasantly surprised about all he learned about the Colosseum, gladiators, what it might have been like to work under the area floor, and the function and history of the Palatine Hill. This was our favorite tour. Thanks Federico!
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Vanessa was a lovely tour guide - an archaeologist with a wealth of knowledge that we greatly appreciated. We could have spend more time on Palatine Hill and the Forum - so many nooks and crannies left unexplored - but we do understand the time constraints for a tour. It felt slightly rushed but we did not feel cheated that we missed out on a lot. We enjoyed having Vanessa as our guide, seeing the ... more amazing sites, and learning some of the history of the area. Getting to go to the Colosseum underground was definitely special! I have to look up the Nat Geo documentary she told us about. Thank you, Vanessa!
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We were so excited about this tour and Catarina our guide made it all worth it. She was so thorough and knowledgeable. She had answers for every question and was patient when others would fall a bit bit behind. We will never forget this day!
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Our guide was incredibly knowledgeable and gave an excellent tour. Visiting the underground was extra special, and the variety of sights at the Forum and Hill were amazing. The lunch break between sections of the tour was refreshing. We almost missed the meeting point because of a wrong turn from construction confusion, but the Through Eternity office called us to give step by step instructions and ... more get us on the correct path....Thank you!!
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