Best Colosseum Tours: How to Access the Arena Floor and the Underground of Rome’s Colosseum

Symbol of Romans’ engineering genius, here you will find the best Colosseum tours to discover and delve into one of Rome’s most famous landmarks. Also known as Amphitheatre Flavium, it was built around 70AD. Since then, it has been the place for shows and games as well as a period of decline after the fall of the Roman Empire. After centuries, this huge amphitheater has shown no sign of cooling and keeps the record of being one of the most popular Rome attractions and one of the best Roman archaeological sites.

There are many ways you can visit the Colosseum, and while going independently might sound cheaper, it can also be quite time-consuming and not as valuable as booking a Colosseum private tour. Why? Because with a tour you can skip the line and save plenty of time especially in crowded seasons, and because a tour leader can talk to you about historical Colosseum facts and anecdotes that otherwise you might not discover on your own.

Whether you are booking a guided tour of the Amphitheater Flavium or not, you might want to book your room in Rome city center or even one of the best hotels near the Colosseum.

Top Colosseum Tours: Discover and Learn Everything About Rome’s Colosseum

rome colosseum entrance
Rome Colosseum main entrance

Find here the best tours of the Colosseum in Rome. Choose the experience that better fits your needs and travel preferences. All these tours include Colosseum tickets skip-the-line to make sure you don’t queue for an hour or two and don’t take too much time off the other landmarks.

Even though one of Rome’s main tourist attractions, there are many things to know and learn about this ancient amphitheater. This is why a Colosseum and Roman Forum tour is essential if you are interested in going beyond just looking at the architecture.

Whether you book a private Colosseum underground tour or an exclusive Colosseum night tour, you will learn and see much more than with a simple ticket entrance to the general access area. We selected the best Colosseum tours for every preference. Whether you only want to visit the general access areas while learning about the whole structure, or also walk the arena floor and gladiators’ dungeon.

1. Skip-the-line Colosseum Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

A popular Colosseum private tour, this will take you also to the Roman Forum and the Palatine Hill. With a maximum of 15 people per group, this itinerary through ancient Rome is easy to follow and hear even when the Colosseum is crowded. Which is most of the times.

You will travel through history and learn about the fights, mass executions, and naval battles of one of Rome’s monuments to the human genius.

You will explore the Colosseum for about an hour and then your guide will take you to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. Here you will walk through the daily life and politics of ancient Rome and see where Julius Caesar was cremated.

One of the best tours of Colosseum and Forum, the explanation of all the places goes in-depth while remaining intriguing and amusing.

Click here for more info and to book.

2. VIP Colosseum Underground Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

colosseum underground tour
Colosseum underground

This is another Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine tour. Here you also have access to the underground and the arena floor for a complete experience.

If you are looking for the best Colosseum underground tour, do check this out. With a maximum of 24 people, enjoy the lesser-busy parts of the Colosseum, where not many visitors get access to as a certified guide is required.

After visiting the underground where animals and gladiators awaited their fate and the arena floor where shows took place, you will walk around the general access areas.

Finally, you will visit the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill for a complete experience of ancient Rome.

Click here for more info and to book.

READ MORE: Want to know more about the history of this famous Rome landmark? Check out our article on the Colosseum facts and history.

3. VIP Ceasar’s Palace Tour with Colosseum and Roman Forum

This is one of the exclusive Colosseum tours skip-the-line by Take Walks. Alongside the famous landmark and the Roman Forum, you get access to the Casa di Augusto, the house of Caesar Augustus, one of Rome’s most important leaders ever.

With an intimate look at Augustus’ private space and life, you will learn how much he meant to the Roman history.

As Casa di Augusto is closed on Saturday, if you book your tour on that day, this stop will be replaced with the Case Romane del Celio. Close to the Circus Maximus, this is an extremely fascinating place and one of my favourite underground sites in Rome.

Click here for more info and to book.

READ MORE: Do you want to have different experiences and visit more places? Check out the other great Rome tours!

4. Gladiators’ Gate: Special Access Colosseum Tour with Arena Floor

rome colosseum arena floor
Rome Colosseum arena floor

This skip-the-line Colosseum tour allows you to enter from the gladiators’ gate directly to the arena floor. From here, you will have a full view of the spectators’ stalls. From here, emperors and the audience watched the shows and cheered at their favorite gladiators.

After walking through the restricted areas and learning about their history and construction, the tour will continue to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. Here is where the wolf found Romulus and Remus and Rome was founded.

Click here for more info and to book.

5. VIP Colosseum Night Tour with Underground and Arena Floor

A popular Colosseum night tour, here you can really experience the famous amphitheater with very little crowds.

After closing time, you will enter the Colosseum and access the underground, the cells where gladiators and beasts were kept before the shows, and the arena floor.

This is a lovely evening tour that starts after sunset at the Jewish Quarter. From here, you will reach the Colosseum with a nice walk through the historic centre. In the evening you can enjoy the Colosseum in dim light and a unique atmosphere.

Click here for more info and to book.

6. Rome in A Day Tour with Vatican, Colosseum and Historic Centre

rome Colosseum spectators' stands
Colosseum spectators’ stands

If you are short on time but you still want to visit as much as you can, including the Colosseum and the main highlights of the Vatican, this is the tour for you.

It’s a full-day Rome tour of a little less than 8 hours where you will visit the city’s main landmarks such as St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican Museums, the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Trevi Fountain and obviously the Colosseum with a fast-track entrance.

This is a pretty daring tour, as Rome is very hard to visit in a day, but if this is all the time you have and still want to make the most out of it, you can only do it with an expert tour guide.

Click here for more info and to book.

READ MORE: Check out my detailed post for more tips on the best way to visit the Colosseum and enjoy your experience.

7. Colosseum Dungeon and Arena Floor Tour with Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

This is a Colosseum tour I took with The Roman Guy. It started at the Roman Forum, the very heart of the ancient city, where temples, villas and the Senate house were built. Here daily life went on thousands of years ago. One of my favorite areas within the Roman Forum is the altar devoted to Julius Caesar. After his death, he was deified and still now his fellow citizens bring him fresh flowers.

After exploring the Forum ruins, our tour guide took us to the Colosseum. Here we enjoyed skip-the-line access to reach the restricted areas available only by booking an authorized tour company. These are the reconstructed arena floor and the dungeons. Including what’s known as the “Gate of Death”, where the dead gladiators and animals were removed from the Colosseum.

Click here for more info and to book.

8. Colosseum Skip-the-Line Self-Guided Virtual Reality Tour

If you’d rather book only a skip-the-line Colosseum ticket and explore the site with your own 3D virtual device, you can check out this tour.

For around 30 euro, you will rent an audio guide with headphones for which you can choose your language. This is a device for 3D interactive reconstruction of the Colosseum to “relive” the shows taking place 2000 years ago.

If you don’t want a guide and want to experience the Colosseum at your own pace, this is a good option. You will also have fast-track access to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.

Click here for more info and to book.

READ MORE: Visiting Rome for the first time? Check out our detailed guide of the top Rome attractions.


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About The Author: Angela Corrias

Hi, my name is Angela Corrias! I am an Italian journalist, photographer, and blogger living in Rome. After over ten years of living abroad, I finally came to the conclusion that in order to better organize my future adventures, I needed a base. Since I know and love Rome so much, I moved back to the Eternal City. This is how Rome Actually was born. Here, I cover everything about Rome, from the local food to the culture to Roman history.

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