Domus Aurea: Nero's Golden House Guided Tour

381 Reviews
from €42.00 EUR
Duration: 1.5 Hours
 Organized by: Ticketstation SRL
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Go into the Domus Aurea, or Golden House, created totally for pleasure by Emperor Nero, a man well-known for jaw-dropping acts of indulgence.

Join an expert guide to discover the Domus Aurea, or the Golden House, designed purely for the pleasure of Emperor Nero, and find out about the history of the site and its remaining riches on a walking tour.

After meeting the guide at the meeting point and exchanging your voucher for your entrance tickets, you can start discovering the Domus Aurea which must have been one of the most aesthetically breathtaking buildings ever constructed.

It is home to several decorative artworks such as mosaics, marble furnishings, and even a rotating dining room. You can listen to the tales about the richness in a house where everything was coated with gold and adorned with gems, shells, and ivory. As you walk, you can also learn about the extravagance of Nero during the construction of the Golden House, which included a 120-foot colossal statue of Nero in the vestibule.

Alongside the architecture, you can visit the peaceful lake, fields, vineyards, pastures, and woods filled with all kinds of wild and domestic animals, as well. At the end of the tour, you’ll understand why Nero was so charmed with the house that he declared “Finally, I begin to live in a house worthy of a man.”

What's Included
  • Visit Nero’s Golden House, or the Domus Aurea, and see the marvels on site,
  • Get the most out of your experience on a guided walking tour,
  • Learn about the site’s luxurious history and the excavations currently taking place there,
  • See the remains of the spectacular adornments including intricate frescos and marble walls,
  • Find out about the site’s underground lakes, spa baths, and rotating dining room.
Cancellation Policy

Free cancellation (up to 24 hours)

Useful Info

We shall never know for certain whether Nero caused the fire that devastated Rome in ad 64 or simply profited from it to seize 160ha (400 acres) of the gutted city to build himself the most luxurious residence ever seen in Rome.

All we can say is that the legend about Nero fiddling while Rome burned is apocryphal, and that no other European monarch has ever carved himself out a larger slice of his capital for his private use. Apart from the facade covered in solid gold, the Emperor’s pleasure palace had such refinements as baths with hot and cold running water either sea or fresh or fed from sulphur springs, hidden perfume sprays piped into the reception rooms, and a mechanical device for showering flower petals upon his banquet guests.

The gloomy chambers of the ruins of Nero’s palace are mostly underground today. Trajan built his public baths on top of the ruined Golden House when it too was destroyed by fire in ad 104.

Thirteen centuries later some of the rooms in the palace were rediscovered and the painted decorations caused an artistic sensation – it was the first time in over a thousand years that anyone had cast their eyes on the style that later became known as ‘Pompeian’. Raphael used the decorations as his model in the Vatican Loggie without knowing he had been copying wall paintings from Nero’s Palace.

As you walk through the cavernous cryptoporticus and through the octagonal hall a powerful pocket lamp will be invaluable in identifying the now much faded paintings. The famous Greek sculpture of Laocoon now in the Vatican museums was discovered here in pieces in 1506. It most likely formed part of Nero’s splendid art collection.

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