The 7 Best Colosseum Tours [2024 Reviews]

Don't miss this marvel of Roman engineering with a guided tour of the colosseum

How much is it to tour the Colosseum in Rome? If you were to purchase a ticket when you arrive at this massive, ancient structure, it usually isn’t much more than 12 euros.

However, this general admission ticket doesn’t provide much value. These are some of the top Colosseum tours available. Several of these tours also include access to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.

Some are guided, giving you more of the history and legends of the Colosseum.

Best Colosseum Tours in Rome

Ancient Rome: Colosseum and Roman Forum Private TourRome Colosseum by Night with Underground & Arena Floor TourSkip the Line Colosseum Tour for Kids and families

Best Private Tour

Best Colosseum Night Tour

Best Colosseum Family Tour

editors choice
 Colosseum: Tour with Arena Floor, Underground and Roman Forum and Palatine Hill  Colosseum: Tour with Ticket to Roman Forum and Palatine Hill
Departure:Piazza del Colosseo, 1, 00184 RomeLargo Gaetana AgnesiPiazza del Colosseo, 00184 Roma RM
Start:Between 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM7:00 or 8:00 PM1:00 PM
Duration:3 Hours2 Hours2 Hours
Includes:Skip-the-line access to Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, licensed tour guideSpecial access to the Colosseum and Roman ForumPrivate guided tour with Priority access, professional archaeologist and historian guide

Tour Information & Booking

Tour Information & Booking

Tour Information & Booking


We’ve chosen these top Colosseum tours because they offer a wide range of experiences and will fit into everyone’s budget.

Quick Answer: The 7 Best Rated Roman Colosseum Tours For 2024

  1. Ancient Rome: Colosseum and Roman Forum Private Tour
  2. Rome Colosseum by Night with Underground & Arena Floor Tour
  3. Skip the Line Colosseum Tour for Kids and families
  4. Rome Skip-the-Line Colosseum & Arena Floor Guided tour
  5. Skip-the-Line: Colosseum & Ancient Rome Walking Tour
  6. Colosseum Underground and Ancient Rome Semi-Private Tour
  7. Expert Guided Tour of Colosseum Underground, Arena and Forum

Colosseum Tour Reviews

1. Best Colosseum Private Tour: Ancient Rome: Colosseum and Roman Forum Private Tour

 Colosseum: Tour with Arena Floor, Underground and Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Departure Point: Piazza del Colosseo, 1, 00184 Rome
  • Departure Time: Between 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Includes: Skip-the-line access to Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, licensed tour guide

If you are looking for the best Colosseum underground tour that is also a private tour that allows you to skip the long lines, this is the one for you! Beginning at the iconic Colosseum, you’ll learn about the technological marvels of ancient Rome that allowed architects to build on such a massive scale.

Construction of the Colosseum includes the structure seen from above as well as underground. If your question is, “Can you tour the Roman Colosseum?” then your answer is, most definitely, yes.

Under the arena, you’ll explore the maze of tunnels and rooms where gladiators prepared to battle each other and wild animals, taking center stage above. This underground construction dates back to the 5th-century AD.

Palatine Hill near the Roman Colosseum

On Via Sacra, in the Roman Forum, you’ll see ruins of ancient markets as well as those of several buildings that formed the government center. Today, the Roman Forum is referred to as the birthplace of ancient Rome.

After touring the Roman Forum, you’ll then head to Palatine Hill. Enjoy the panoramic views and take pictures of the city the ancient Roman soldiers called home and would finally see again, sometimes after years away during times of war or conquest. Palatine Hill is in the center of Rome and looks out at it in all directions.

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


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2. Best Night Colosseum Tour: Rome Colosseum by Night with Underground & Arena Floor Tour

Rome Colosseum by Night with Underground & Arena Floor Tour

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Departure Point: Via del Colosseo 24
  • Departure Time: 7:00 or 8:00 PM
  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Includes: Special nighttime access to the Colosseum, underground access, arena floor access, headsets

If you are looking for the best Colosseum night tour and avoid the crowds, this tour is for you. A tour of the Colosseum at night is an eerie experience and should not be missed!

With this tour you get a much more personal experience without the daytime crowds. Your guide will give you an intimate tour while explaining all the history of the Colosseum.

You will have plenty of time to explore independently with access to both the maze of tunnels and rooms underneath the arena and the second floor where the Emperor’s Box once was.

Night guided Rome Colosseum tour

Once you are done with exploring the tunnels, you will then get to see the underground dungeons, where combatants waited their turn to do battle on the Colosseum floor.

You will also see the cages where the tigers were kept. Admire the amazing engineering skill of the ancient Romans where they created wooden elevators to transport the combatants and the tigers up to the Colosseum floor.

With the nighttime tour you will be able to almost hear the screaming crowds and sounds of the tigers!

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


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3. Best Colosseum Family Tour: Skip the Line Colosseum Tour for Kids and families

 Colosseum: Tour with Ticket to Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Departure Point: Piazza del Colosseo, 00184 Roma RM
  • Departure Time: 1:00 PM
  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Includes: Private guided tour with Priority access, professional archaeologist and historian guide

Families who would like to see the Colosseum will really appreciate this tour! This two hour tour with skip-the-line access is specifically designed with families in mind. The tour guides will give commentary that adults and children both will understand.

The guide make the history and significance interesting to your children to keep them interested. This private guided tour will give you more access and you won’t need to wait in lines to purchase admission tickets.

During your guided tour of the Colosseum, you will learn about the seating arrangements, by social class as well as wealth. The construction of the Colosseum took many years and technology new to the Roman Empire.

Roman guided Colosseum Tour for Kids and families

You’ll also learn of the gladiator games and see the underground rooms where they prepared. While the gladiatorial games were banned in 438, the violet fights between wild animals continued for nearly a century.

After your two-hour, guided tour of the Colosseum, you will be given your tickets to access both the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. While these tickets must be used on the same day as your Colosseum tour, you’ll also be provided with a map to help you explore the area.

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


4. Best Colosseum Budget Tour: Colosseum Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Colosseum Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Departure Point: Colosseo Metro Station, Line B Exit
  • Departure Time: 10:40 AM, 1:20 PM
  • Duration: 1 hour, 30 minutes (approx.)
  • Includes: Small group tour with local guide, skip-the-line access, access to normally off-limits areas of the Colosseum

After meeting with your 5-star rating tour guide, you’ll head inside the Colosseum with your skip-the-line ticket. Your guide will tell you the history of the Colosseum and the role it played in ancient Rome.

While hearing the legends of the Colosseum re-told by an expert guide, you’ll be taken on a walk through the Gladiator’s Gate. This is the large gate that would open to allow the gladiator’s access to the arena, where they would fight to the death.

Guided Colosseum Tour

As you are guided around the open areas of the arena floor, a place usually not available to tourists, you’ll also be able to view the lift. This lift would open and bring many of the wild animals right into the middle of the arena.

The Colosseum was constructed in the 1st-century and has stood the test of time. Your guide will give you the details on just what this iconic building has gone through over nearly 2,000 years of its history.

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


5. Best Colosseum Guided Tour: Rome Colosseum with Access to the Gladiator Arena

Rome: Colosseum with Access to the Gladiator Arena

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Departure Point: Via del Colosseo 24
  • Departure Time: 9:30 AM, 2:30 PM
  • Duration: 3 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: Expert tour guide, headsets, skip-the-line privileged access to the Colosseum and gladiator arena

If your goal is to see and learn the history of the Colosseum, this small-group, guided tour is ideal. Not only will you learn the history of the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill, you will learn about what life was like for both the wealthy and everyday citizens.

Your skip-the-line access will get into the Colosseum as your guide recounts the history of the most iconic structure of ancient Rome. Your headsets will allow you to hear your guide clearly.

While visiting the tomb of Julius Cesar, you’ll learn about many of ancient Rome’s emperor’s, some famous for their greatness and some notorious for their evil ways.

Colosseum tour in Rome

As you are touring the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, also with skip-the-line access, you’ll take a stroll down Via Sacra. This was the “Main Street” of ancient Rome. The ruins of many shops are still visible here, giving you an idea of life was like for the common folk.

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


6. Colosseum Underground and Ancient Rome Semi-Private Tour MAX 6 People Guaranteed

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Duration: 3.25 hours
  • Departure: Piazza del Colosseo, 21, 00184 Rome
  • Departure Time: 9:15 AM, 12:15 PM, 1:30 PM
  • Includes: Small group size, head to underground and Colosseum arena, local expert guide, skip the line entry

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or it’s your first time in the city, you simply have to consider this next tour. The Colosseum Underground and Ancient Rome Semi-Private Tour will show you hidden secrets that lie beneath the surface of one of the most easily-identifiable, legendary structures in all of history.

Follow in the footsteps of everyone from gladiators to kings on this captivating tour with an expert guide to lead the way.

With incredible attention to detail and organization, our guide was able to practically transform time. In the time it could easily take to stand in line to see the Colosseum alone, we say the circular structure, along with Palatine Hill and the Roman Forum ruins.

With small group tours maxing out at just 6 people, it was an intimate experience with personalized attention that elevated this tour heads above almost all the rest.

Once we met up at the Colosseum Metro Station, we skipped past the line and headed straight into the depths of the famous landmark. The subterranean chambers are a labyrinth where wild animals and gladiators awaited their fates, and our guide regaled us with many emotional tales of some of the events that happened here.

Then, we headed up to the arena level where we actually got to head straight onto the original floor which most visitors don’t get the chance to do.

After the Colosseum, we traversed the cobbled streets of Ancient Rome, arriving at the Roman Forum where time seems suspended in the remnants of temples and government buildings. We then continued up to Palatine Hill, which is known as one of the Seven Hills of Rome and known for being the most opulent place to live, where the wealthiest Romans resided.

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience



7. Expert Guided Tour of Colosseum Underground, Arena and Forum

Tour Highlights At A Glance at a Glance:

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Departure: Piazza del Colosseo, 21, 00184 Rome
  • Departure Time: Varies
  • Includes: Fast track entrance tickets and reservation fees, guided tour of Underground and Arena of Colosseum, guided tour of Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, live expert guide, earphones, on-site assistance, night tour option available at Colosseum

If you’re traveling on a budget but still want to appreciate one of those “biggest bang for your buck” tours, look no further. The Expert Guided Tour of Colosseum Underground, Arena and Forum is a 3-hour experience which completely transformed the knowledge of Rome I thought I had. It’s a fully-customizable, profound excursion that will take you to some of the most legendary sights in Rome.

Before I get started, I do want to mention that we had the option to book a private tour for a slightly higher fee, which I do feel is worth it. We met up with our guide at the Colosseum, where we decided to take the night tour option which is not commonly offered.

This means less crowds, and a more intimate experience that I feel lends more of an authentic vibe to the tour. We learned all about countless stories of emperors, senators, goddesses, gladiators, and so much more as we toured around.

We even got to step on the Arena floor and head down into the Underground section: two areas that most visitors don’t even get to touch.  We then headed to the ground level, where we learned all about the revolutionary construction techniques that had never been seen before this.

We had some free time to explore before taking a little break and heading to the archaeological area of the Roman Forums and Palatine Hill. Here, we were able to take another 1-hour guided tour which was actually perhaps my favorite part!

The ancient temple ruins and stories to accompany the sites were so fascinating, and lent valuable insight into religion and Ancient Rome’s penal system.

Palatine Hill looks quite different now, though the breathtaking views I’m sure were equally as impressive as they were when Rome’s wealthiest took up residence here!

More Information & Tour Booking

100% refund for cancellations within 24 hours of tour experience


FAQs About Colosseum Tours in Rome

colosseum tickets skip the line

In TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards 2020, Rome was ranked as the #3 Top Destination in the World. If you want to get the most out of your trip to Rome, it’s important to see the Colosseum. It is an iconic structure of ancient Rome and is a symbol of the culture of Rome as well. Visit the Colosseum and surrounding ancient buildings with a guided Colosseum tour.

What will I see in the Colosseum?

There are three levels in the Colosseum. The arena floor, the underground along with the third level can only be accessed with special tickets or guided tours.

  • The first level is the arena floor, you can walk around and see the underground rooms and hallways where gladiators and animals were kept. Some parts of the arena area have been restored to give a better sense of what it was like in ancient times.
  • The second level is where most of the spectators watched the events. Spectators were separated by social class and gender. Here you can check out the architecture and engineering of the Colosseum. There are some panoramic views of Rome as well.
  • The third level is where the lower classes and women were seated. This level was finally reopened in 2017 after being closed for 40 years.

What is the best time to see the Roman Colosseum?

You should know the peak season (July and August), the weekends, and the public holidays, are the most crowded and expensive time to go. If you want to enjoy a more peaceful and cooler atmosphere, opt for the early morning or late afternoon tours, when the light is also more beautiful.

How long does a Colosseum tour last?

Most Colosseum tours are 1 to 3 hours. You can take tours that include access to the arena floor, the underground chambers and the upper levels. These tours are longer and more in-depth, but also more expensive and require advance booking.

What should I wear and bring to a Colosseum tour?

The Colosseum is mostly outdoors so you should dress according to the weather. Wear comfortable shoes, as you will be walking on uneven surfaces and climbing stairs. Bring your ID or passport.

Is it better to take a guided tour of the Colosseum?

A tour guide can bring the history of the Colosseum alive. You will have a professional and knowledgeable guide who will tell you stories and facts that you won’t find in any guidebook. You will also have priority access to skip the long lines at the entrance and save time. You will have the opportunity to ask questions of you guide.

What is the best Colosseum tour?

If you can afford to spend a bit more for a more personal experience we recommend the Ancient Rome: Colosseum and Roman Forum Private Tour. This is a private tour so it’s only your group on the tour so you get the full attention of the guide and able to ask as many questions as you like.

What is the cheapest tour of the Colosseum in Rome?

If you are on a strict budget and still want to have a guided tour of the Colosseum we recommend the Rome Skip-the-Line Colosseum & Arena Floor Guided tour. Even at a bargain price you still get to see all the sites with a guide to answer questions.

Inside the Colosseum - Rome's Most Iconic Landmark

Planning Tips for a trip to Rome

Before you start packing your bags, you’ll want to know how to make your trip easier and how to get the most out of your time in Rome. These top 5 planning tips can help you do just that.

Even standing outside the monstrous architectural wonder that is the Colosseum, it’s hard not to feel overwhelmed at the technology and hard work necessary to build it. When visiting it, you will want to make sure you get the most out of the opportunity.

Tip #1: Wear Comfortable Shoes

It might be safe to say that you will want to wear comfortable shoes when touring many areas of Rome. However, there is no place in the city that requires comfortable walking shoes (can you link to a buying guide for shoes to this guide?) than the Colosseum.

This is a very large structure and many tours will take you up into the stands, onto the arena floor, or even into the underground tunnels and rooms where gladiators prepared for battle. With so much to see, you may spend hours here, and most of it spent walking.

Your best bet is to bring a comfortable pair of shoes from home, so you know they won’t hurt your feet with constant walking.

Tip #2: Take a Tour of the Colosseum

When standing in line to purchase a general admission ticket to the Colosseum, you may be waiting for quite a while. Plus, the general admission price doesn’t include priority access or access to other areas of the Colosseum.

When you purchase a ticket for a guided tour of the Colosseum, you will usually also receive skip-the-line access. This means that you will enter the Colosseum with your guide without having to stand in line. Many of these tours also offer access to areas of the structure that most people aren’t able to see.

One of the best reasons to invest in a tour of the Colosseum is that your guide will also be able to explain the different areas of the structure that you visit. Learning not just the history but also the time-true stories and legends can make your trip to the Colosseum a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Tip #3: Arrive Early, Stay Late

The Colosseum opens for visitors at 8:30 AM. Many guided tours will start between 8 and 9:30 AM. Those that start before the day’s official opening can provide a wonderful experience, seeing the Colosseum and its marvels without crowds.

If you are also going to be visiting the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, be sure to stay in the area until after sunset. Seeing the Colosseum lit up at night is a view not to be missed.

Tip #4: The Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

Even many of the general admissions tickets to the Colosseum will provide access, or a discounted rate, for entry to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill as well. With a guided tour, you can also see all three locations. This is a great way to spend a day and you will be able to experience some of the most popular attractions in Rome all in one day.

Tip #5: Choose Nearby Accommodations

If the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill are on your list of must-visit attractions in Rome, you may want to choose accommodations that are close by. Not only does this make it easier for you to visit these places, but it is also a wonderful area of Rome to stay. Transportation is conveniently located nearby and many tours of other areas of the city have pickup locations in this area as well.

Other Attractions in Rome

Rome is full of attractions you can visit around your tour of the Colosseum. The National Roman Museum is family-friendly and houses many interesting artifacts. The Basilica of San Clemente is not just a church, but also an archaeological site.

The newer building at the entry level dates back to the 12th-century while you can head downstairs to the original basilica built in the 4th-century AD.

If you’d like to see some of the more ancient attractions around Rome, you have several options. The Roman Forum is the location where Romulus made the founding of the city of Rome official. It was once the epicenter of Roman life.

Ostia Antica is just 25-minutes away by train. This location was once a thriving center of commerce. Today, you can explore over 100 acres of ancient shops, baths, temples, and even apartment buildings and houses.

If you have some extra time, a visit to the Tuscany region should not be missed. With beautiful hilltop towns and wineries you should take a day trip to Tuscany. If might be the highlight of your trip!

If you would like to see more of the Italian coast, a day trip to the Amalfi Coast or Capri should not be missed!

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The Colosseum Underground and Arena Tour w/ Roman Forum is our Editor's Choice with its combination of sites seen, tours guides and value.

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