Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano
History & Heritage

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Our most recommended Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano History & Heritage

  • Vatican & Rome City Pass with Free Transportation

    1. Vatican & Rome City Pass with Free Transportation

    Make your stay in Rome an unforgettable and unique experience with the 3-day OMNIA Vatican Card and Roma Pass. It’s actually 2 passes rolled into one! Roma Pass grants you free entry to 2 out of 5 top attractions plus discounts at a further 30 top sights and a travel card. The OMNIA Vatican Card allows entry to all top sights in Vatican City plus a 3-day hop-on hop-off bus tour. You will also receive a free guidebook and map to help you plan your itinerary as well as dedicated itineraries that allow you to explore the city at your own pace.

    The OMNIA Card includes: 

    • Fast track entrance to Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel - fast track entrance needs to be booked when collecting the pass, not before.  • Entrance to the Basilica of St. John in the Lateran and cloister with multimedia audio guide  • Entrance to St. Peter’s Basilica - including a free...

    Perfect for us, very helpfull. Still, I would find very useful a meeting point at Termini Station, where are all the connections for the city. Nevertheless, I think it was a good idea to take the offers.

  • Rome: The Archbasilica of St. John in Lateran

    2. Rome: The Archbasilica of St. John in Lateran

    The Lateran complex consists of several high interest sites: the Basilica, the Cloister and the Treasure Museum, the Baptistery and the Holy Stairs, which contain the casket of the Chapel of the Sancta Sanctorum. This special ticket allows you to easily access the complex and visit all the points of interest in around 2 hours with a multilingual audio-guide system. You will begin your visit by visiting the basilica with the cloister and the Treasure Museum, before then proceeding outside the church to the baptistery which is located in the square behind. During the second half of your tour, you will visit the building of the Holy Stairs, which is located on the right of the basilica, and admire the Chapel of the Sancta Sanctorum. If you only have one hour, you can visit the basilica and its cloister first, followed by the Holy Stairs and Sancta Sanctorum.

    The Basilica is beautiful and the headsets provided great detail, however it was a bit confusing of what was included in the ticket, this was in a good way as got more than realised but had to be told re. The holy stairs etc. Very well worth doing though and it is for the 3 buildings as well as extra restricted area in the basilica. I didnt appreciate the meaning of this church before i went.

  • Catacombs & St John in Lateran Combo Tour

    3. Catacombs & St John in Lateran Combo Tour

    Take a 20-minute ride on a public bus to reach the Catacombs, near beautiful historic Appian Way. Once there, enjoy a guided tour with an expert local guide. Hear about how the oldest nuclei of the Roman Catacombs date back to the end of the second century and how the catacombs were built underground with tunnels on various levels to solve the spacial problems. Visit St. John in Lateran Basilica and explore all its points of interest in around 2 hours with a multilingual audio guide system. Begin by visiting the Basilica with the cloister and the Treasure Museum, then proceed outside the church to the Baptistery. You can then complete your tour by visiting the building of the Holy Stairs, located on the right of the basilica, and admire the original private papal chapel of the Sancta Sanctorum. If you only have one hour, you can visit the basilica and its cloister first, followed by th...

    The bus to get to and from the catacombs aren't always on time but the tour guides are great

  • Capitoline Museum Skip-the-Line Small Group Tour

    4. Capitoline Museum Skip-the-Line Small Group Tour

    On this 3-hour tour you’ll meet your guide at the top of the stairs of the St. Mary of Aracoeli Basilica, where you’ll begin your amazing journey through the history of the Capitoline Hill complex, including the Capitoline Museum and St. Mary of Aracoeli Basilica. Your professional guide will tell you how the construction on Capitoline Hill began, and how Michelangelo was commissioned by Pope Paul III to design the square. The first square of modern Rome was created by the genius of Michelangelo, rising on the Capitoline Hill, on the site of an old village and the place dedicated to numerous temples to the Roman deities. Step inside Santa Maria in Ara Coeli, built on the ruins of the Tempio di Giunone Moneta. Its name derives from a legend according to which a sibyl predicted the coming of the son of God, saying: Haec est ara filii Dei. This is the highest peak of the Campidoglio Hill...

    Marle Robinson was a spectacular guide. Her knowledge of all the works of art inside gave us a greater appreciation for what we were seeing. Especially since a lot of the art is not labeled. Highly recommend a guided tour.

  • Rome: Lateran Complex and Holy Stairs Guided Walking Tour

    5. Rome: Lateran Complex and Holy Stairs Guided Walking Tour

    Meet your guide outside the Lateran Obelisk, then travel back in time as you explore one of the most religious sights in Rome, the Lateran Complex. Admire the Archbasilica of St. John Lateran, which dates back to the 4th Century AD, and learn about its historical importance. Marvel at the church’s impressive marble statues, mosaics, and vaulted ceilings. Soak up the array of architectural styles found at the church, including Neo-Classical and Renaissance. Discover the Holy Door, and learn how it is sealed by mortar, only to be opened during Jubilee years by the pope. Outside, marvel at the Holy Stairs, which traditionally represent the ascent Jesus made in Pontius Pilate’s Palace.  Next, check out the Obelisk, which is one of the largest in the world, and listen to stories of its history. Finally, head to the Lateran Baptistery, built on the orders of Emperor Constantine in the 5th Ce...

  • Rome: 3-hour E-Bike Rental with Optional Attraction Combo

    6. Rome: 3-hour E-Bike Rental with Optional Attraction Combo

    Spend 3 hours exploring Rome on your own by bike. Choose to combine your cycling adventure with a unique virtual reality experience at the Circus Maximus. Alternatively, combine your E-bike rental with entrance to the Baths of Caracalla, Castel Sant'Angelo, the Catacombs, or the Trevi Underground.  Circus Maximum Virtual Reality Experience Combo Add a ticket to your bike rental and relive the ancient splendors of the Circus Maximus. Put on your VR headset and go on a 40-minute, time-traveling journey back to the imperial period of Rome through augmented and virtual reality. See one of the most important monuments in Roman history, the Circus Maximus, in all its historic phases. Experience this groundbreaking project, which uses interactive display technologies that have never before been used in such an extended outdoor area.  see how images of the past are overlapped...

  • Rome: Catacombs of Rome and Main Basilicas Half-Day Tour

    7. Rome: Catacombs of Rome and Main Basilicas Half-Day Tour

    Begin your tour with visits to 2 important basilicas. Discover the Archbasilica of St. John Lateran, the oldest of Rome’s 4 main basilicas and home to the Holy Stairs, a pilgrimage site. Then head to the Basilica of St. Mary Major to see the amazing collection of historic and religious artefacts. Admire the mosaics and the Crypt of the Nativity. Continue along the historic Appian Way, passing the Chapel of Domine Quo Vadis. Arrive at the ancient underground Catacombs of Rome. Explore these remarkable subterranean cemeteries, some dating back to the 2nd century. See historic artwork in the catacombs, and learn about how these underground passageways give insight into the early days of Christianity.

    This Tour is very well organized from Pick-up to Drop-off. The guides were informative, helpful and friendly. Highly recommended. Just a reminder to bring clothing which you can put on to cover your shoulders and knees when visiting the Basilicas.

  • Holy Rome Church and Catacombs Guided Tour

    8. Holy Rome Church and Catacombs Guided Tour

    On this historic tour, marvel at intricately created art masterpieces and visit Scala Santa, one of the most important locations for those who came to Rome on a spiritual pilgrimage. Start your tour by visiting two of the world's most important Basilicas, the Basilica of Saint John Lateran and the Basilica of Saint Mary Maggiore. Saint John Lateran, the oldest Basilica in Rome, is famous for its Holy Steps, which were the first path for the pilgrims coming to Rome on a spiritual journey. The other basilica of interest, the Basilica of Saint Mary Maggiore, is the largest Catholic Marian church in Rome where you can admire the fabulous 5th-century frescoes and mosaics inside. Under the basilica's altar lies the famous Crypt of the Nativity, which is rumored to contain wood originating from the crib of Jesus Christ. This holy tour of Rome ends in the historic Appian Way, descending underg...

  • Christian Rome and Underground Basilicas 3-Hour Tour

    9. Christian Rome and Underground Basilicas 3-Hour Tour

    Enjoy a half-day walking tour of Christian Rome and discover underground treasures in some of the most sensational churches. Your guide will tell you fascinating facts along the way, leading you to the ancient Basilica of San Clemente, and the Cathedral of St. John in the Lateran Palace. Start at the Basilica of San Clemente, the only church in Rome to be built on 3 different levels. Constructed from the 1st to the 12th centuries, 2 underground floors can now be explored, including the Altar of Mithras from the 1st century. Continue to the church of the Santi Quattro Coronati, devoted to 4 anonymous saints and martyrs. In 2002, an extraordinary series of frescoes was uncovered depicting scenes from the Zodiac, Four Seasons, Liberal Arts, and King Solomon. Follow the story of the Emperor Constantine and Pope Sylvester in the Chapel of St. Sylvester, where it is said the famous Constitu...

    Very informative, complete, personalized and enjoyable! Roberto's knowledge is extensive and his passion for the topics covered was evident throughout. It was also refreshing to have a guide who simply shared the information without feeling the need to inject a "self-satisfied, modern cynicism" throughout like so many of the other guides we've had in Rome recently. I highly recommend this tour.

  • St. John Lateran, Holy Stairs & Baptistery Private Tour

    10. St. John Lateran, Holy Stairs & Baptistery Private Tour

    The 3-hour tour begins as your guide shows you the stunning interior of St. John Lateran. Admire the sculptures and the central nave, with its ornate 16th-century ceiling by Borromini, commissioned by Pope Innocent X for the Jubilee in 1650. From inside the Basilica, you’ll enter the Lateran Chiostro, and see the lovely marble columns lining the 36-meter corridor dating to the 13th century. Cross the street to enter the small yet unique Lateran Baptistery, more properly called San Giovanni in Fonte. It was built in the 4th century by Constantine, along with the basilica of Saint John Lateran, on top of a 2nd-century villa. You’ll see that the interior follows an octagonal plan. In the middle, there are 8 porphyry columns supporting an octagonal lintel over which there is another order of smaller white marble columns. Admire modern copies of Andrea Sacchi’s works depicting the life of...

    Max was our guide and we were fortunate to be the only two on the tour. It was a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon; we saw and learned so much. Max had such extensive knowledge I wish I had been able to record him so that I could listen again and remember more. I strongly recommend this tour.

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What people are saying about Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano

Overall rating

4.0 / 5

based on 253 reviews

Really nice way to get around Rome. It's nice and fast, you can get everywhere and it's a lot more comfortable than a scooter! We rented the bike for 3 hours and this time it lasts easily and (about 40km) had half the battery left. Highly recommended!

Marle Robinson was a spectacular guide. Her knowledge of all the works of art inside gave us a greater appreciation for what we were seeing. Especially since a lot of the art is not labeled. Highly recommend a guided tour.

Very convenient for getting around and visiting Rome. Nevertheless, with the sanitary restrictions, the Vatican skip-the-line ticket did not serve us. Looking forward, Joffrey

Very good if you have more than three days there otherwise besides the Vatican tickets the taxi is an easy and inexpensive way

Beautiful church. Get the audio guide for the true experience.