If you want to visit the Colosseum, this is the perfect guide for you. Discover how to get there, the opening hours and how to reserve your tickets!
Visiting the Colosseum is one of the strongest desires of anyone who comes to Rome. Indeed, the extraordinary beauty of the Flavian Amphitheater, its architecture and history are such that they border on legend.
Therefore, a visit to the Colosseum is such an important moment that it can only be organized in the best possible way.
In this article, we will accompany you on a journey among all the main information on how to visit the Colosseum so that, during your visit, you can appreciate all the majestic beauty of this monument: in the simplest way, of course.
Colosseum: a bit of history
The Colosseum is one of the greatest architectural works of all times that still amaze for its magnificence and eventful history. But let's start at the beginning...
In ancient Rome, great importance was attached to entertainment, sport, and games in general, which is why stadiums and theatres were built in the city.
But if the Roman theatre, as well as the Greek one, was the place for acting in the present sense (comedies, tragedies, satires were staged there), the place for "entertainment" par excellence was the amphitheater, a word that "doubles" the theatre both architecturally and metaphorically: anphì, means in fact "on both sides".
This is because the theatres had a semicircular shape while the amphitheaters have a circular or elliptical shape (as in the case of the Colosseum).
The Colosseum in Rome became the greatest place for entertainment in the world
Which kind of shows took place inside the amphiteater?
They were often very violent fights or exhibitions to the death, starting at dawn and ending at dusk (sometimes they continued for several days).
There were different specialties: there were the Venationes, i.e. the fights between man and animal that were characteristic of the morning.
Then there were the gladiator fights, which were widely advertised, and in the days immediately preceding them (the Colosseum could hold more than 50 thousand spectators). The public was fundamental and often influenced the final decision of salvation or death for the protagonists of the challenge.
There were also other types of physical tests such as chariot races, athletic competitions, and even the putting to death of the condemned. At the end of the day, there were rich prizes for the winners such as precious stones or money, garlands or golden crowns, and the glory of the population who acclaimed some athletes and gladiators as heroes.
But the specialties that could be admired in this amphitheater did not end here. At the very beginning, also the spectacular naumachias took place inside the Colosseum, real naval fights that also referred to historical, mythological, and legendary battles. The space of the Colosseum was thus flooded by a sophisticated irrigation system, which still raises many questions from historians and archaeologists all over the world.
Visiting the Colosseum: where it is located and how to get there
It is located in a very central area of Rome but, luckily, very well connected.
In fact, you can get to the Colosseum very easily by public transport (metro, streetcar and bus), while by car it can be more complicated. The center of Rome, in fact, is quite busy and some areas are likely to be restricted to cars. In any case, the reference parking lot is called the Colosseum and has a parking fee.
How to get to Colosseum by metro
This is undoubtedly the fastest way to get here. In fact, the Colosseum stop is served by Metro B, located right in front of the amphitheater.
Metro B also allows you to get here from Termini station: you just need to get on the metro to Laurentina.
How to get to Colosseum by bus
There are indeed many bus lines that allow you to get off right in front of the anphiteater.
Suggested lines are 38 and 75, for those leaving from northern Rome; while 175 and 271 for those leaving from southern Rome.
Perhaps the bus is less rapid than the metro, but it allows a spectacular view of the beauty of Rome.
How to get there by tramway
The nearest stop is the one located at Piazza Venezia. From there, it is a ten-minute walk to the Colosseum.
Indeed, it will be the most incredible walk of your life because you will cross Via dei Fori Imperiali in all its magnificence.
Opening hours and useful info
How to visit a place that, in its heyday, had a capacity of 65 thousand people?
Currently, no more than 3 thousand visitors can enjoy the tour at the same time. Hence, it is one of the most visited attractions in the city.
The Colosseum is open every day (except December 25 and January 1), with different opening hours depending on the seasons. Roughly, it opens at 8:30 a.m. and closes in the late afternoon.
When is the best time to visit the Colosseum?
Over the whole day, surely the best time to visit the Colosseum is early in the morning. Around 8:30 in the morning, in fact, there are usually few visitors and therefore a quieter time can be enjoyed.
Alternatively, another of the best times to visit it is in the evening. However, remember to keep in mind that it takes about 2 hours to visit the entire monument and that the closing time changes according to the season!
Colosseum in Rome, tickets and tour info
Have you been struck by the beauty and history of the Colosseum and want some useful information for your visit? Here we are ready to help you.
Tickets for Colosseum can be purchased online or by phone.
Unlike in the past, in fact, there is no longer a physical ticket office in Colosseum Square: therefore, if you do not purchase your ticket in advance, you will not be able to visit the monument.
Standard tickets include admission, over a 24-hour period, to the Colosseum, the Forum and the Palatine Hill. The full ticket costs 16 euros, to which reservation fees must be added. With this ticket you can access all the main sites of the Archaeological Park, but you cannot visit the foundations of the Colosseum.
If you like to enrich your experience, you can decide to book an exclusive guided tour that also includes the foundations!
It is worth noting that up to 25 years of age you can get a reduced entrance fee of 2 euros and that several categories of people (e.g. minors, students of art history, teachers) are entitled to free admission.
Last minute tickets to the Colosseum
It is not always easy to find availability to visit the Colosseum.
Sometimes one's stay in the capital is completely unexpected and one has not had time to plan one's activities.
If you want to visit this beautiful amphitheater but can't find room on the days you are in town, check here for availability of last minute tickets with priority access!
The best way to visit the Colosseum: our tips
A visit to the Colosseum begins long before the moment you cross its threshold.
Visiting this amazing monument, in fact, means planning your experience at your best, so that you do exactly what you want, how you want it.
On one hand, as we have seen, there are standard tickets that include an individual visit to the Archaeological Park. On the other hand, there are packages that allow you to enrich your experience even more.
For example, you can visit the undergrounds or access the extraordinary third level from which you can enjoy a magnificent view of Rome, but that's not all.
Did you know, for example, that you can also take a moonlight tour of the monument? Only you, together with your guide and a few other participants, will have the magnificent opportunity to appreciate its extraordinary beauty at night.
Whichever experience you choose, remember in any case that this is a very ancient place. In some places the steps may not be perfectly level and there may be some small obstacles along the way. Certainly it is wise to wear comfortable footwear and above all to stay on the marked path!
These are very few tips that will certainly allow your visit to the Colosseum to be magnificent!