Colosseum, an Icon Until 01/07/18
The Colosseum is not only the most visited monument in the world, but also a place that has gone through many transformations until becoming almost a pop icon. Promoted by the Soprintendenza Speciale per il Colosseo and Rome's central archaeological area, this exhibition traces its history.
In 523 AD, the gladiatorial games officially came to an end, leaving the monument to fall gradually into disrepair without being abandoned completely. The exhibits include evidence of everyday life in the Late Middle Ages, paintings, watercolours, and drawings depicting the "landscape" of the ruin that inspired many artists from the Renaissance onwards. Like today, in the days of the Grand Tour the Colosseum was a monument visited by anyone making a trip to Italy. As one of the most important travel destinations, buying a souvenir was de rigueur - at that time, souvenirs were reproductions made of marble, micromosaics depicting the Colosseum, and more; today, the mass souvenir is much more pop and produced in distant countries, but the fame of the Colosseum is the same. Now restored, freed from all interventions and decorations that had accumulated over the centuries, the Colosseum comes alive not only in the collective imagination of Italians - its legend continues. Proof are the thousands of visitors queuing to visit it, and also its ubiquitous image in advertising.
Rome was born here! Visit one of the most famous monumental complexes in the world hassle free: Save time and money with our special Colosseum, Palatine Museum and Roman Forum Combo Ticket, including the audio guide for the Colosseum.
Ticket is valid for the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill with the Palatine Museum and the Roman Forum.
Ticket is valid for two days from pick up and allows one entrance to each site.
** Want to combine culture and fun? Skip the Lines at the Colosseum AND at the Hard Rock Cafe! ! We have been noticing how very popular the Hard Rock Cafe is for traveling families and the younger crowd - so we did something about what may seem an unusual venue for us. As of today, you can choose to book your fast access ticket for the Roman Colosseum, skipping the lines, and including a fantastic lunch (or dinner) at the Hard Rock Cafe of the city! With our ticket in hand you will be seated at the first available table.
Reservations must be made with a minimum of 1-day notice.
Reservations are limited to a maximum of 13 persons.
Save time ordering! Add all the museum tickets you want to your basket, then fill in the form and send the request.
PLEASE NOTE: Immediately after submitting an order, you will receive an email with your order summary plus a second email confirming your successful payment. A confirmation email with links to the vouchers will be sent one business day after you place your order (Monday afternoon for orders submitted on Friday and during the weekend). Please make sure that your anti-spam filter does not block automatic emails from [email protected]
IMPORTANT NOTE: The time you select on the order form is your preferred time. The museum will automatically confirm the closest available time, which can be any time during opening hours on the selected date, if your preferred time is no longer available.
Please read this IMPORTANT NOTE for Colosseum combo tickets: The time and date on the order form indicate the start of validity of your ticket. You must pick up your actual ticket on the date and at the exact time indicated. If you present yourself later than 15 minutes after the indicated time, you lose your admission right. You will receive your actual ticket in exchange for the voucher you will receive from us once your reservation is confirmed.
- 8:30am - 4:30pm from January 2 to February 15
- 8:30am - 5:00pm from February 16 to March 15
- 8:30am - 5:30pm from March 16 to 28
- 8:30am - 7:15pm from last Sunday of March to August 31
- 8:30am - 7:00pm from September 1 to September 30
- 8:30am - 6:30pm from October 1 to last Saturday of October
- 8:30am - 4:30pm from last Sunday of October to December 31
- 8:30am - 2:00pm April 11
- 1:30pm - 7:15pm June 2
- Closed January 1, May 1, December 25.
Ticket office closes one hour before closing time.
- Due to mandatory security controls by metal detector, waiting time in line at the exterior of the Colosseum to access the monument is about an hour and a half. The "skip-the-line" aspect of your booking applies to the line at the ticket desk, not the security controls.
- In case of low temperatures thin sheets of ice could form on the arena floor, in which case the Superintendent may order that access to it is forbidden until weather conditions change. The site could in this case be re-opened from 1pm each day, but only after control by internal staff.
Confirmed tickets CANNOT be cancelled and are NOT refundable.
The COLOSSEUM is probably the most famous monument in the world. With its height of 48 meters (157 feet), the colossal elliptical structure has fascinated humans throughout history.
Construction of the Colosseum was begun under Vespasian as a symbol of the grandeur of the Roman Empire. It was inaugurated by Emperor Titus in the year 80 AD. The popular name of "Colosseum" is due to a statue ("colosso") of Nero once situated next to the arena. The original name of this ancient Roman sports arena, the largest arena of its kind, is the Amphitheatrum Flavium.
The exterior borrows elements from Greek architecture. Every arch is framed by columns. From the bottom to the top, the columns are Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian. The attic is decorated with Corinthian pilasters. Here, small windows once alternated with bronze plaques. Marble and metal were taken from the facade and interior of the Colosseum for use in later buildings.
The design of the Colosseum is a triumph of functional planning. The Colosseum consisted of four floors. It stood 160 feet high with four stories of windows, arches, and columns. It could easily accommodate as many as 50,000 spectators who entered through the 76 gates on the ground level. Two of the entrances were used by Emperor Titus and two for the gladiators. Barrel-vaulted corridors gave access to tiers of seats. The spectators were seated by rank with the topmost seats reserved for women and children.
The basement level, now exposed, was covered with a wooden floor strewn with fine sea sand. The level underneath contained elaborate corridors, service rooms, elevators, gladiatorial barracks, and rooms for wild beasts. During the first ten years of its existence, the stadium was filled with water and used for mock naval battles called Naumachie.
Most shows lasted all day beginning with comedy contests and exotic animal shows in the morning and professional gladiator events in the afternoon.
The ROMAN FORUM was the center of political, commercial, and judicial life in ancient Rome. “Forum” was the name the Romans gave to the central square of the urban settlement – this busy, crowded place was in many ways similar to the pulsing center of a modern city. Here the masses would flock to see the meetings of the orators, attend criminal trials, and discuss internal politics or the latest military campaigns, or quite simply to comment on the games or run races (an activity the Romans particularly enjoyed). The largest buildings were the basilicas, where legal affairs were addressed. According to the playwright Plautus, the area teemed with "lawyers and litigants, bankers and brokers, shopkeepers and strumpets, good-for-nothings waiting for a tip from the rich.”
As Rome's population boomed, the forum became too small. Julius Caesar built a new one in 46 BC, setting a precedent that was followed by emperors from Augustus to Trajan. As well as the Imperial Forum, emperors also erected triumphal arches to themselves, and just to the east Vespasian built the Roman's entertainment center, the Colosseum. The valley of the Forum followed the course of a stream by the name of Velabrum, which had eroded the bank of volcanic tufa meandering between the Palatine and Capitoline hills toward the Tiber.
The area around the Forum was also home to markets, shops, and taverns. You could also find the typical Thermopolia, the ancient equivalent of today's fast food restaurants. In short, the Forum was the heart and soul of city life.
It was in Caesar's time, when Rome became the capital, that the Forum became a place for celebrations, and Rome became the symbol of the vast Empire. A breathtaking panoramic view of the entire Forum complex awaits you from the magnificent terraces of Campidoglio. From here you see the imposing ruins of the Basilica Emilia – the only remaining republican basilica – as well as the Curia, which was once the seat of the Senate. Nearby you will also note a vine, a fig tree, and an olive tree – three trees cited by Pliny the Elder and replanted in recent times.
The Palatine Hill is located between the Roman Forum, the Velabrum and the Circus Maximus. It is one of the seven hills of Rome, and probably the site of the first settlements of the city. The western side of the Palatine Hill is where Roman mythology places the site of the dwelling of Romulus, as well as the cave where Romulus and Remus were raised by the she-wolf.
The PALATINE ANTIQUARIUM MUSEUM is located on the Palatine Hill, on top of what was once the palace of Domitian. The former Convento della Visitazione was built here in 1868. The museum was set up around 1930 by Alfonso Bartoli. In the beginning, only the first floor was used to exhibit the most important material, including findings from Diocletian's Baths. After WWII, items of greatest artistic importance were relocated to the Museo Nazionale Romano, while the Palatine Museum was dedicated to exhibiting items relating to the topography of the Palatine Hill and its monuments.
The museum was reorganized by the end of the 1960's. After a long closure period and recovery of Diocletian's sculptures, the Palatine Museum reopened to the public showing the artistic culture of the Domus from Augustus to late imperial times.
The Palatine Museum is entirely devoted to ceramics, frescoes, mosaics, inscriptions, sculptures and portrait heads actually found on the hill. Given the lasting importance of this relatively small area of the city, the museum's mere nine rooms offer a remarkably rich and comprehensive tour through ancient Roman history and art.
Full price tickets
Reduced and free tickets can only be purchased directly at museums and monuments in Rome.
Full price tickets
Reduced and free tickets can only be purchased directly at museums and monuments in Rome.
PLEASE NOTE: The Entrance Fee is formed as follows:
- Cost of the Ticket + exhibition € 12.00
- Dealer Presale Fee € 1.60
- Online Booking Fee € 2.40