The Colosseum, or Flavian Amphitheater, is the largest amphitheater in the world and was built in the Flavian era, begun under the Emperor Vespasian in 71/72 AD and inaugurated by Titus in 80 AD. The Colosseum is located in the center of Rome, in an area previously occupied by the Domus Aurea Neroniana, within which there was an artificial lake.
It was on this area of the artificial lake that the foundations of the Colosseum saw the light, and the presence of the lake made it possible to avoid meters and meters of excavation. Always linked to Nero is the origin of the name 'Colosseum' which is to be attributed to a huge statue of Emperor Nero that stood a few steps from the place where today we can admire the Colosseum today.
The versatility of the uses intended for this monument must surprise us and make us reflect on the history of the Colosseum: from glory and center of gladiator shows to a place of martyrdom for Christians, to a mere deposit of materials. Today the Colosseum is certainly a symbol of the archaeological and cultural history which attract thousands of visitors from all over the world every year. So let's see how to visit the Colosseum, an essential appointment of the Roman holidays.
Entrance tickets to the Colosseum
One of the simplest ways to visit the Colosseum is represented by entrance tickets. Tickets for the Colosseum are skip-the-line, for a specific day and time. This allows you to arrive only a quarter of an hour earlier to complete the entry procedures. Once inside the Colosseum you will have all the calm to make the visit at your own pace. A guide in pdf format will also help you in orienting yourself during the visit. This guide is automatically forwarded once the ticket has been purchased. With admission tickets you can see all areas of the Colosseum except for the arena and underground. For the latter there is a specific guided tour. The same thing to access the higher rings from the third onwards. Once you are satisfied with the time spent inside the amphitheater, remember to go to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, areas that can be visited with the Colosseum ticket. You will therefore notice that the visit to the three areas will take you a full day. If you prefer, you can visit the area of the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill before entering the Colosseum, the important thing is that the entry time to the Colosseum is respected.
With the entrance tickets for the Colosseum, you can also book an audio guide of the Colosseum, the explanation of which will accompany you during the visit. The audio guide will be collected once you enter the monument and must be returned at the exit.
How to visit the Colosseum in Rome including the arena
The arena of the Colosseum is also an area of great interest. The arena of the amphitheater cannot be walked on by purchasing the simple entrance ticket. In fact, there is another Colosseum + Arena ticket also called "full experience" which allows, in addition to the reserved entrance to the Colosseum, access to the monument's arena and other archaeological areas of great archaeological interest always located in the area of the forums.
This ticket lasts two days and includes in addition to the Colosseum with arena the entrance to the Roman Forum, the Palatine Hill and Museum, the House of Augustus and Santa Maria Antiqua.
The alternative to the Colosseum: the Forum Pass
If you have already visited the Colosseum and are missing the other areas not included in the Colosseum ticket, you may want to consider purchasing the Forum Pass ticket. The Forum Pass ticket allows access to the Roman Forum, Caesar's Forum, Trajan's Forum and the Palatine Hill and Museum. The ticket is valid for one day and allows one entry to each site. As for the Colosseum, with the purchase of the Forum Pass ticket you will receive a guide in pdf format by e-mail that you can consult before or during your visit. The Forum Pass ticket obviously does not include the entrance to the Colosseum, but allows you to have a complete view of the archaeological area of the Colosseum, allowing you to explore the area of the Forums, which presents pearls of architecture that will complete the historical picture of the time.
How to visit the Colosseum in Rome: group guided tours
How to visit the Colosseum in Rome: group guided tours
If, on the other hand, you prefer to be assisted by the explanation of a guide, here are the ways of visiting you can choose from. As already mentioned, it is possible to participate to the guided tour of the Colosseum underground section, the area below the Colosseum used as a passage for beasts and gladiators. These were then hoisted onto the arena floor by means of a system of 'elevators'. The underground tour is a very fascinating visit that can involve both adults and younger visitors.
In alternaticve, you can take part to the tour to the highest rings of the Colosseum. During this visit, visitors will be able to access the third, fourth and fifth rings, also called Belvedere. Not surprisingly, the peculiarity of this visit is the beautiful view of Rome that the fifth ring of the Colosseum offers. It is useful to know that both the visit to the underground and that of the Belvedere include the entrance, (not guided), of the Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill.
How to visit the Colosseum in Rome: the private visit of Ancient Rome
The Colosseum and the surrounding area included in the admission ticket is so special and unique that you may prefer a personal explanation. This is possible by booking a private tour of the Colosseum with an exclusive guide, which therefore includes the explanation of an expert and official guide. The guide service lasts about 3 hours. The private tour of the Colosseum has the advantage that the guide will only follow your group, thus allowing you to interact more than during a group visit. Furthermore, if you have children, the private tour can be organized ad hoc to involve even the little ones, using a language and choosing the ideal path to allow children to follow the explanation without getting bored.
All our guides are expert and licensed to offer you a professional and in-depth service on all aspects relating to the archaeological area of the Imperial Forums.
The private visit of the Colosseum can also be a wonderful gift that you could give to family or friends for special occasions. Be sure you will give them an unforgettable experince!
Colosseum opening hours
To find out the opening hours of the Colosseum, read the article on the opening hours of the monument.