Colosseum and Imperial Rome Private Walking Seminar

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The Colosseum.
The Colosseum.
A tour guide explains the history of the Colosseum.
A tour guide explains the history of the Colosseum.
The Colosseum from the inside.
The Colosseum from the inside.
Signage inside the Colosseum.
Signage inside the Colosseum.

What To Expect

This private tour of the Colosseum and ancient Rome is led by a classical scholar or archaeologist.


Tours in Rome
Departs From:
Meeting Point:
Oppio Caffe
3 hours
daily at 9:00 AM; 1:00 PM
Product Code:
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Paper voucher printout not required for this activity. You may show e-voucher from your mobile device.
Featured On:
ColosseumRoman ForumArch of ConstantineCapitol SquareForum of AugustusRome Private ToursRome Segway & Walking ToursRome City Tours & SightseeingPrivate ToursSegway & Walking ToursCity Tours & Sightseeing


This three-hour in-depth walking tour focuses on the history and development of Rome during the Imperial period: roughly from the time of Julius Caesar to the fall of Rome. Using key monuments from this period as our textbook, including the Colosseum and Imperial Fora (situated across the street from the Roman Forum and not to be confused with it), we'll discuss the rapid expansion of the city and the empire under the emperors and how Romans lived 2000 years ago.

This walking seminar is normally led by a scholar of archaeology, classics, or architecture and discusses the important role commerce and entertainment played in shaping the urban design of ancient Rome. We will begin our exploration with the Colosseum, ancient Rome's most visual legacy and a structure emblematic of the ambitious building programs of various emperors. Here will we introduce several key themes in our discussion, including the role of entertainment in society and the ways that power was projected during the Imperial period. After visiting the amphitheater and discussing its role in Rome, we will continue down the via dei Fori Imperiali, a modern road that looks down over the ruins of several squares, temples, and other structures (collectively, fora) built by such emperors as Augustus and Trajan. We will use this opportunity to talk about the great expansion in the city in the first centuries of the common era and the ways in which the old Republican city was transformed.

The second part of the walk will focus on how successive emperors developed the city. Depending on the interests of the group, we may continue the full length of the Fori Imperiali all the way to the Forum of Trajan, which features that emperor's iconic column. Or, we may divert up to the Capitoline hill where there are so many wonderful remnants of ancient and early medieval Rome, including the fantastic church of the Aracoeli. Regardless, our docent will explain the relationship between some of the surrounding medieval structures and the Imperial buildings throughout this area, creating a narrative that will link the different historical periods. There are tens of thousands of fascinating details to focus upon and based on how our conversation has developed to that point our docent will pick apart a few salient ones to help the group get a perspective on the history of this area.


  • Services of a docent

  • Entrance to the Colosseum


  • Meals and drinks

  • Personal expenses

  • Tips and gratuities

  • Optional activity costs

Please Note

  • Walks are held rain or shine with some variations to accommodate the weather.

  • Hotel pick-up can be arranged with an additional fee. Please inquire.

  • This tour is not available during the annual Rome Marathon.

Cancellation Policy

  • 25% Cancellation Fee (75% reimbursement): 45 days prior to date of activity.
  • 50% Cancellation Fee (50% reimbursement): between 16 to 44 days prior to date of activity.
  • 100% Cancellation Fee (no reimbursement): 15 days or less prior to date of activity.

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