Of all the monuments in Rome, the Colosseum is without doubt the most breath-taking. It was there that the gladiators fought to the last breath and death row prisoners fought against lions. Construction of the amphitheater began during the rule of the Emperor Vespasian in 72BC and was completed by Domiziano in 82BC. The area in which it was built was part of Nerone's Domus Aurea a valley in which there was once an artificial lake around which stood buildings designed for the sole purpose of entertainment. The name Colosseum was given because of its vicinity to the colossal statue of Nerone. Originally called Amphitheatre Flavio and built to hold 50,000 spectators, the Colosseum wasn't the biggest in the city; the Circus Maximus held up to 250,000. The Emperor offered free shows to show his magnanimity in the Colosseum. The games included gladiator combat and shows with ferocious beasts, not forgetting the cruelest of the shows, those between men and animals. The majesty of the amphitheater is certainly due to the materials used. Blocks of marble and volcanic tuff sit one on top of the other, reaching 50 meters in height. In the center of the Colosseum there was a wooden platform covered in sand, or an "arena" as it was known in Latin. Places were assigned according to a strict social system; the best views were reserved for the Emperor, followed by members of the senate. In the underground corridors were arms holding rooms and large animals cages. A wooden elevator system allowed for the gladiators and animals to appear in the center of the arena, to the surprise and delight of the public. From these underground rooms there was a corridor which lead out of the Colosseum to the Ludus Magnus, still partially visible today.
€12 combined entrance to the Colosseum, Foro Romano and Palatino.
€7,50 tickets for European Union citizens between the ages of 18 and 25.
Free entry to under 18s and the disabled.
-Open every day bar 1st January, 1st May and 25th December.
-From the last Sunday of October to the 15th February: 8:30-15:30
-From 16th February to 15th March: 8:30-16:30
-From the last Sunday in March to 31st August: 8:30-18:15
-From 1st September to 30th September: 8:30-18:00 -From 1st October to the last Saturday of October: 8:30-17:30
If you would like to learn about the fascinating history of the Colosseum in all its detail, take advantage of our guided tours. For further information visit our Colosseum, Palatino Hill and Roman Forum Tour.
The Colosseum is undoubtedly the most famous monument in Rome and indeed it was here that gladiators fought to their death and prisoners condemned to death were fed to the lions.
Tickets to the Colosseum include entry to the Roman Forum. Here you can admire the magnificent works of Ancient Rome and see first-hand how the Romans lived.
It was the biggest arena in Ancient Rome, where the famous chariot races took place. Today it is an important site, used for concerts, other forms of manifestations and other public gatherings.
In Roman times the Foro Boario (the livestock market) was an important trading centre with its own docks on the River Tiber.
The gracious villa built by Nerone was abandoned after his death and only rediscovered in the 1700s. Attempts at a full restoration still continue to this day.
The Palatine hill is generally considered to be the place in which Rome was founded: the place where the she-wolf raised Romulus and Remus.
Designed by Giuseppe Sacconi and built in 1885 in order to commemorate the Unification of Italy, the Vittoriano monument is decorated with an enormous equestrian statue of the first king of Italy, Victor Emanuel II.
This splendidly conserved arch was built between 312 and 315 AD in order to celebrate Constantine’s victory over Massentius, his rival for the imperial throne.
Built in the 9th century over an existing oratorio, the church of Santa Francesca Romana incorporates part of the Temple of Venus and Rome. The church is famous for its fine Romanic bell tower.
Located at the top of the Capitoline hill next to Piazza del Campidoglio, the church of Santa Maria in Aracoeli dates back to the 7th century.
Connected to the Roman Forum by the Basilica of Constantine, this tiny 6th century church is home to some of the most beautiful mosaics in Rome.
Overlooking Piazza di San Marco but now incorporated into Palazzo Venezia, this church was founded in the 4th century in honour of Saint Mark the Evangelist.
Found at the top charming steps off the Via Cavour, it is one of the most important of Rome's churches, famous for housing Michelangelo's Moses and the relics of Saint Peter's chain.
Construction of this church began in the 8th century although it wasn't until 1700 that it finally found peace with its current appearance. It is found in Celis, near the Circus Maximus.