Rome Culture & history

Our most recommended Rome Culture & history

Vatican: Museums & Sistine Chapel Entrance Ticket

1. Vatican: Museums & Sistine Chapel Entrance Ticket

Take a stirring journey through art and religious history with skip-the-ticket-line entry to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel. Avoid the long ticket lines and then enjoy your visit at your own pace.  Wander through the Greek Cross Gallery to see elaborately-carved sarcophagi that might just contain the earthly remains of some of antiquity's famous kings and queens. Peek at the Cabinet of the Masks, or tour the Sala degli Animali to see a virtual menagerie of fantastic beasts, real and imagined. Walk the Upper Galleries, including the Gallery of Maps, to see how cartographers depicted the world through the ages. See masterpieces by Renaissance masters in the Raphael Rooms, and rest for a while in the Borgia Apartments. Then, it’s time to marvel at Michelangelo’s exquisite Sistine Chapel, the crown jewel of the Vatican, and perhaps even of all the world’s art treasures.

Rome: Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill Entry Tickets

2. Rome: Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill Entry Tickets

Marvel at the remains of some of the greatest monuments of the Roman Republic with an entry ticket to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill. Skip the long ticket line at the Colosseum and go straight to the fast track entrance for security checks. After entering the Colosseum at your allotted time, relive the stories of emperors and gladiators. Begun under the emperor Vespasian in 72 AD, and completed by his son Titus in 80 AD, the Colosseum was the largest amphitheater ever built. Imagine the ferocious fights between man and beast, as you stand in the elliptical arena, comprised of 4 levels, and once able to seat up to 73,000 spectators. Your ticket also includes one entry to the Palatine Hill and Roman Forum, must-see sights for all those visiting the “Eternal City.” According to ancient tradition, this is the spot where Rome was born. Look down at the ruins of temples in the Imperial Forum, the center of all political, social, and economic life in the city during the Roman Republic. Experience the most ancient parts of Rome from the most significant of its “Seven Hills.”

Rome: Colosseum Guided Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

3. Rome: Colosseum Guided Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Explore the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill with a guided tour of all 3 attractions. Learn all about the biggest amphitheater in the Roman Empire, everyday Roman life, and the founding site of the city. After skipping the ticket line, explore the Colosseum as your guide shares its history with your group. Imagine the battle scenes with gladiators and wild animals that took place here. Next, visit the Roman Forum to see where the center of Roman social, political, and religious life took place. Home to the old marketplace and Temple of Julius Caesar, it was a grand site at the heart of Roman life. Head up Palatine Hill next, the rumored birthplace of Rome and the middle of the 7 hills. Enjoy panoramic views over the city from here, including unforgettable views of the Colosseum and Roman Forum themselves. Travel along the Via Sacra, the road connecting all 3 sites, as your guide paints a picture of Roman life for your group.

Rome: Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Tour

4. Rome: Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Tour

Discover some of the most popular attractions in Rome on a guided walking tour of Vatican City. Visit the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter's Basilica with your guide, and admire the ornate interiors and the famed artworks housed here. Meet your guide close to the entrance to the Vatican Museums and follow them as you set out to explore the most interesting galleries within the museum. See the Rotunda, the Gallery of Tapestries, and the Gallery of Maps. Take in the ornate ceilings in each room and see the ancient statues, frescoes, and tapestries that adorn the walls. Then, enter the Sistine Chapel and marvel at the intricate fresco that covers the entire ceiling and walls. Painted by Michaelangelo between 1508 and 1512, the Sistine Chapel represents a cornerstone work of High Renaissance art. From the Creation of Adam to the Last Judgement, Michelangelo dedicated some of his greatest years to the Sistine Chapel, working day and night – even sleeping in the chapel – to satisfy the popes of Rome. The artist also expressed his frustration through hidden meanings in his work, which have since been uncovered and deciphered. Listen as your guide lets you in on Michelangelo's private jokes. Finally, head to St. Peter's Basilica for the final leg of your guided walking tour. The cathedral is one of the most renowned works of Renaissance architecture and holds the title of the biggest church in the world. Explore the interior of this magnificent structure with your guide and discover the many masterpieces of Renaissance and Baroque art that fill the cathedral. Admire the famous Pietà by Michelangelo and the elaborate St. Peter's Baldachin by Bernini. Your tour comes to an end outside the cathedral. From here, feel free to wander around Saint Peter's Square or visit the nearby Castel Sant'Angelo on your own. 

Colosseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill Priority Access Guide

5. Colosseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill Priority Access Guide

Start your tour right outside the monumental Colosseum where you will meet your guide. Here, your expert in Roman history will give you an introduction to the finest arena of the Roman Empire. Explore the magnificent Colosseum, which had 80 entrances and could accommodate around 65,000 spectators. Hear about the spectacular festivals the Romans held here, which could last up to 100 days. Enjoy time at your leisure after your visit to take some pictures, refresh yourself, and wander around. Then, being the second part of your tour to the Palatine Hill and Roman Forum. Explore the social, political, and religious center of the Roman Empire, where the different strata of Roman society would rub shoulders. Take in the incredible ruins at Palatine Hill on a guided tour of the grounds, and enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the Colosseum. For the second part of your tour, you will have the opportunity to meet your second guide, who is passionate about Ancient Rome. Make the most out of your experience by having two of the highest-rated guides lead you through the areas of expertise they know best.

Rome: Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel Tour with St. Peter's

6. Rome: Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel Tour with St. Peter's

Discover the art collection inside the Vatican Museums on a tour with an art historian guide, with an optional entry to Castle Gandolfo and skip-the-line access to St Peter's Basilica for visits before lunchtime. Walk through the galleries and admire masterpieces by Michelangelo inside the Sistine Chapel.  Meet your guide, an art historian who will tell you all about the masterpieces you will be encountering. Hear fascinating facts and stories as you visit the Gallery of the Maps, the Gallery of the Tapestries, and the Gallery of the Candelabra. Round off the tour with by encountering the marvels of the Sistine Chapel, complete with frescoes by Michelangelo. Be awed by coming face-to-face with Michelangelo’s most famous artwork: The Last Judgement. On tours before 2:30 PM, take advantage of skip-the-line access to St. Peter's Basilica. You can also make the most of your experience by taking advantage of additional entry to Castle Gandolfo (if option selected).

Rome: Colosseum Tour with Access to the Gladiator Arena

7. Rome: Colosseum Tour with Access to the Gladiator Arena

Visit one of Rome's most iconic attractions on a guided tour of the Colosseum. Learn about the rich history of this place, hear tales about the games that took place here, and enter through the gladiator gate to access the arena floor. Walk through the back door of the Colosseum and pass straight onto the arena floor through the gate named after Libitina, the goddess of funerals. Tread where dead gladiators and animals were once carried away. Feel the majesty of ancient Rome beneath your feed as you stroll over the steps of those who fought in gladiatorial combat. Enjoy astonishing 360-degree views of the Colosseum. Look up at ruins that were once filled with thousands of spectators. Snap excellent pictures, as a limited amount of visitors can be there for a given amount of time. Explore the general access area which includes the ground floor, the second tier, and a balcony with astonishing views over the Roman Forum and Arch of Constantine. Step onto the podium reserved for the most important Romans over the main entrance to the Arena and feel the thrill of the amphitheater. Let your guide paint you a picture of the past with engaging stories and legends.

Rome: Colosseum Tour with Arena Floor, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill

8. Rome: Colosseum Tour with Arena Floor, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill

See the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill on a guided tour of all 3 attractions. Learn all about everyday Roman life, the Colosseum’s gory history, and the city’s rumored founding hill. After entering the Colosseum, tour the amphitheater as your guide brings history to life. Visit the normally off-limits arena floor and imagine the roaring crowds from the gladiators’ perspective. Next up, visit the Roman Forum, the epicenter of Roman political, religious, and social life. Home to the Temple of Julius Caesar and Roman Senate, it was full of grand, classical architecture and a marketplace. Walk up to Palatine Hill, the reputed birthplace of Rome and the centermost of the Seven Hills of Rome. Enjoy panoramic views of Rome from here, including exceptional views over the Roman Forum and Colosseum.

Rome: Castel Sant’Angelo Skip-the-Line Ticket

9. Rome: Castel Sant’Angelo Skip-the-Line Ticket

Uncover the secrets within the walls of the Castel Sant'Angelo, a historic mausoleum that's now a museum on the Tiber River's right bank. Explore one of the lesser-known gems of Rome with fast-track entry tickets and enjoy views of the city from above. Upgrade your visit to include an audio guide.  Skip the lines and walk inside to browse through the artifacts that narrate the building's many transformations. First erected to be a monumental tomb, then a fortress during the medieval ages, and a defensive post for barbarian invasions, the castle will offer you new insights into Roman history. Explore the 5 floors of the museum heading towards a spiral ramp, then see the cells and the rooms that served as a Papal residence, as well as a chamber of ashes where you can marvel at the remains of iconic Roman characters and frescoes preserved perfectly. End this informative trip on the Castle’s astonishing roof terrace and have a picturesque view of the whole city. Be prepared to spot Vatican City, the Tiber River, and the famous Bridge of Angels.

Vatican City: Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel Guided Tour

10. Vatican City: Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel Guided Tour

Discover one of the greatest art collections in the world on a guided tour of the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel. Learn the fascinating history and facts about these sites from your licensed guide, marvel at the frescoes, and leave the tour with a wealth of information. First, your local guide will show you around the Rotunda, the Gallery of Tapestries, and the Gallery of Maps. Marvel at the ornate ceilings, ancient statues, and intricate tapestries found throughout the Vatican Museums including an entire ceiling and wall completely frescoed by Michelangelo. Visit the world-famous Sistine Chapel, and see the Creation of Adam in real life. Listen as your guide tells you about Michelangelo’s private jokes and secret messages that were hidden amongst the painted frescoes on the ceiling of the chapel

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Frequently asked questions about Rome

What top attractions are a must-see in Rome?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Rome?

The best day trips and excursions from Rome are:

Pompeii

Other Sightseeing Options in Rome

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What people are saying about Rome

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 119,597 reviews

Vatican is a fascinating place of history, religion and art. Firstly, we thoroughly enjoyed an informative and relaxing bus tour through beautiful Vatican gardens. The Vatican Museum was big and busy. I wish we had a guided Museum tour rather than audio guides which we had to additionally hire in order to get some guidance. Audio guides were not very helpful, because we had to decide what to focus on and the information provided was not always engaging. Therefore, we stopped using audio guides and enjoyed the experience. For such a large museum I would prefer to have a guide who could select stops and give more relevant information. The Sistine Chapel was breathtaking. Vatican City is not to be missed.

My teenage daughter and I had a great day! Our guide Peter, organised this trip very well. All stops were well timed so that we got the most out of this exciting day. We had sufficient time to wander around Positano and its beach, and enjoy amazing colours and views there. We were lucky with weather and traffic. In Pompeii we had an excellent local guide. She used our precious time very efficiently to show us around and tell many facts. Time on the bus passed quickly too. Thanks to our kind and professional coach driver, we had a very comfortable travel. I would highly recommend this trip.

Our tour guide Peter was great, really, he was very knowledgeable about the areas we were going through and seeing, he was very informative about subjects pertaining to the tour, he knows his history. Peter was good about prepping us to know when we would break for food, restrooms etc.. The drive was cumfy in a clean bus and didn’t seem as lengthy as it would seem on paper at all, so don’t shy away from the hours this tour runs, it was fun, didn’t seem heavy at all and there was a really good restaurant at the end of the day drop off point at 2 min walking distance.

JB and Luigi were excellent at getting us to all the places we needed to be at and for being really friendly and helpful. Hector was a very informative guide for Pompeii ruins. Overall would recommend!

A must do while in Rome, but having a guide made it all even better. Both of our guides make the visit much more interesting and rich. Very knowledgeable and great story tellers