Site tours (with guide) not to miss in Roma:

The sites listed here should be visited with the help of an expert guide. Reservations should be made according to the guide’s tour availabilities. I have a favorite tour company in Rome that I am happy to pass along to you. Small groups of 15 or less people and expert art historian/archaeologist guides. There is so much that you will miss, if you try to venture on your own...

 
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I recommend the tour of all three locations at once for an in-depth walk through the very beginning history or Rome. You are certainly welcome to split the locations into three separate tours, fo course. They just go hand in hand :) There are daytime tours of all three, as well as night tours of the Colosseum:

• Colosseum
• Roman Forum
• Palatine Hill

 
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This is usually a 3 hour tour of the important works of art that I am sure you’ve seen in books at some point in your life. Works of art by Bernini, Caravaggio and Raphael to name a few. So incredibly beautiful and informative with a guide:

• Borghese Gallery

 
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There are various tours that take you into the Vatican. Some are early in the morning (to avoid the massive afternoon crowds), some include just about all important areas at once, while others are quick tours of just the essentials:

• Vatican Museums
• Sistine Chapel
• St Peter’s Basilica
• Spiral staircase to the very top of the dome in the Chapel
• St Peter’s tomb underground, underneath the altar in the Chapel

 
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This site is SO prominent and important to the Roman empire and the Catholic Church in Rome, yet it is one of the least visited. Consider touring this beauty at some point too, the tour usually is coupled with one or two of the ancient Roman bridges around the site:

• St Michael’s Castle (Hadrian’s Mausoleum) (Circular, 2nd-century castle housing furniture & paintings in Renaissance apartments)

 
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This is a bit macabre and not up everyone’s alley, but touring the underground catacombs (of which Rome is full of) might interest you as well. There are crypts that contain bones of ancient capuchin monks as well. There are daytime and night time tours as well:

• Catacombs of San Callisto (Ancient Christian burial tunnels containing 3rd-century frescoes & the crypts of martyrs & popes)
• Catacombs of Santa Priscilla (A 13km network of tombs & chapel dug into volcanic rock richly decorated with stucco & artwork)• Catacombs of Domitilla (Tours through 15km of catacombs with a sunken church & 2nd-century fresco of the Last Supper)

 
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Day trip south. This is a whole day thing, in a small van with no more than 15 people. So incredibly worth it from Rome with lunch and archaeologist included of course! The Florence day trip is via high-speed train:

• Pompeii
• Herculaneum
• Amalfi / Positano
• Florence (see the David and markets and more)

 

Walking around Roma and other sites a short ride away:

Many of the sites listed here are free and open to the public. These are piazze, churches, certain monuments and courtyards of palazzi that we will simply walk through when exploring the various Rioni (neighborhoods) or Rome.

Basic knowledge of the statues, the fountains, the buildings and the churches is something I am happy to provide to you, though I am not a formally licensed tour guide in Rome... I simply know my way around my city! :) These are places we will be walking through during out week in Roma (all or most of them, anyway).

Others in this list have a minimal entry fee that can be paid at the time of the visit. All are well worth considering, when you’re walking around Roma. So much to see in this gorgeous UNESCO World Heritage City!

 
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FREE:

• Pantheon (Iconic temple built circa 118 to 125 A.D. with a dome & Renaissance tombs, including Raphael’s) (Rome may charge €3 soon)• Piazza Della Minerva (Elephant sculpture and obelisk so loved by Romans)

• Trevi Fountain (Aqueduct-fed rococo fountain, designed by Nicola Salvi & completed in 1762, with sculpted figures)

• Piazza Navona (Elegant square dating from the 1st century A.D., with a classical fountain, street artists & bars)

• Largo Argentina (Archaeological site close to where Julius Caesar was killed, also home to a colony of cats)

• Circo Massimo (Green space & remains of a stone & marble arena that could seat 250,000 Romans for chariot races)• Giardino Degli Aranci (on the Aventine Hill)

• Piazza Di Spagna and the Spanish Steps

• Isola Tiberina

• Gianuculum Hill (This historic, well-known hilltop terrace offers panoramic views of Rome)• Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere (the oldest Church in Rome)

• Fontanone Dell’Acqua Paola

• Piazza Del Popolo

• Il Pincio

• The staircase of Ara Coeli and the Basilica or Ara Coeli at the top

• Campidolgio (Hilltop square designed by Michelangelo, lined with museums & offering views of the Roman forum)

• Via Appia Antica (3,400-acre park along 16km of the Roman road preserving important ancient Roman tombs & villas)

 
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ENTRANCE FEE:

• Capitoline Hill Museums

• Baths of Caracalla (Ruins of a vast rectangular-shaped Roman thermal bath complex used from around 216 A.D. to 537 A.D)

• Aurelian Walls Museum (Well-preserved sections of the walls built 271–275AD under Roman emperors Aurelian & Probus)

• Bocca Della Verita’ (The Mouth Of Truth) (Carving of man's face on ancient manhole cover, a popular attraction due to the myth)• National Museum of the Etruscans (Villa Giulia)

• Villa Doria Pamphilj (the stunning format gardens are open to the public)

• Ara Pacis

• Villa D’Este (a short drive away)

• Villa Adriana (a short drive away)