he Roman Colosseum or Coliseum, originally known as the Flavian Amphitheatre, was commisioned in AD 72 by Emperor Vespasian. It was completed by his son, Titus, in 80, with later improvements by Domitian. The Colosseum is located just east of the Roman Forum and was built to a practical design, with its 80 arched entrances allowing easy access to 55,000 spectators, who were seated according to rank. The Coliseum is huge, an ellipse 188m long and 156 wide. Originally 240 masts were attached to stone corbels on the 4th level.
Just outside the Coliseum is the Arch of Constantine (Arco di Costantino), a 25m high monument built in AD315 to mark the victory of Constantine over Maxentius at Pons Milvius. Vespesian ordered the Colosseum to be build on the site of Nero's palace, the Domus Aurea, to dissociate himself from the hated tyrant. His aim was to gain popularity by staging deadly combats of gladiators and wild animal fights for public viewing. Massacre was on a huge scale: at inaugural games in AD 80, over 9,000 wild animals were killed.
The museum is located in the heart of piazza del Colosseo, on the homonymous B(blue) metro line.
Classical Rome (SIC), 3 hr
An itinerary by coach and on foot visiting the classic monuments of Rome. Crossing Piazza della Repubblica with the Fountain of the Nayads, our local ...
COLOSSEUM TOUR (SIC), 3 hr
get a gladiator’s-eye-view by using their special entrance and stepping onto the normally off-limits arena floor. You can’t get closer to the action than this. The arena floor is where people actually fought and died in the Colosseum. You’ll by pass long, general entrance lines and step directly onto it via the special Gladiator’s Gate. As you marvel at the great amphitheater around you, your expert guide will tell stories to transport back nearly 2,000 years, when vicious blood sports were the most popular form of entertainment in Rome. During your tour you’ll also explore the rest of the Colosseum, including the first floor and Roman Forum overlook. Then you’ll head into the Roman Forum and the Palatine hill to learn the wider history of Imperial Rome. Through the stories and anecdotes of your expert guide, the ruins will come to life and you’ll have no problem imagining the heyday of this incredible civilization. Our fully-licensed, expert guides are the best in the business.
Hop on Hop Off tour, 24 hr
An approx. 2 hour hop-on, hop-off tour with stops in the vicinity of some of Rome's most famous sights. Taped commentary in English. Hourly depart...