Half-Day Tour: Catacombs of Rome with Main Basilicas

from €50.00 EUR 
Duration: 3 Hours
 Organized by: Gray Line I Love Rome

Leave your hotel and start your journey to explore 2 important basilicas first. First one is the St. John Lateran Basilica, where the Holy Stairs (a pilgrimage site) can be found, the oldest one of Rome’s four basilicas.

Next one is St. Mary Major Basilica where you can see stunning collections of handmade and historical objects. You will be amazed by the Crypt of the Nativity and the mosaics.

The next stop for you would be the Chapel of Domine Quo Vadis after you pass through Appian Way. There, you will see the remarkable underground Catacombs of Rome and underground cemeteries as old as 19 centuries. Have a look at the work of arts from history and learn how those subterranean paths enlighten the very early time of Christianity.

About Appian Way

This is the most famous, the longest, the straightest of the old Roman roads and also the best preserved, it starts, more or iess, from the Baths of Caracaila and in an almost straight line, a good ninety kilometres, joins Terracina, Capua (in Campania), then goes through Benevento until it gets to Brindisi. It was the outlet of ancient Rome for traffic going East. It was called the “regina viarum”. “queen of the roads”.

Begun in 312 BC by Appius Claudius, a censor who gave it his name, it was extended to Brindisi around 190 BC. It fell into disuse at the end of the Empire, was “rediscovered” during the Renaissance but was only restored in our century. It was built using extremely high standards of engineering (it is only in this century that this technology was rediscovered).

The Appian Way consists of four different and paved strata four metres and ten centimetres wide, sidewalks on either side, and at the time of the ancient Romans was lined with trees. Many patrician tombs line it as it was customary then to bury the dead outside the city walls.

To whoever travels along it today the Appian Way gives rise to powerful pictures -of wagons, people, armies, travelling merchants – and because of ttie many ancient tombs, the sacredness of death. The tomb of Cecilia Metella is certainly the most famous. This young patrician girl’s tomb is in the style of an Etruscan tumulus and anticipates the great mausoleums of Augustus and Hadrian. On a square stone base rises a cylindrical construction that encloses the small funeral chamber Tlie tomb, today decorated by Medieval crenelations, was surmounted by a pensile grove of cypresses.

There are many important monuments along the Appian Way and in its surroundings: from the Baths of Caracalia to the Catacombs of St. Callisto and the several patrician tombs. The enormous, well-preserved Baths of Caracalia, today used for summer operatic performances, could accommodate some one thousand six hundred bathers and were built towards 212 AD by the Emperor Caracalia. It has gymnasiums, baths, music rooms and underground rooms. Except for a few traces of the old mosaic pavement, all the decorations have disappeared. Two famous ancient works were excavated here: the Farnese Hercules and the Farnese Taurus.

  • Explore St. John Lateran Basilica as well as St. Mary Major Basilica,
  • Visit Rome’s Holy Stairs, an important pilgrimage city,
  • Be amazed by the underground Catacombs of Rome,
  • Listen to your guide and learn what happened in the history of this city.
What's Included
  • 3-hour live guided tour,
  • Professional tour guide (local),
  • Entry tickets,
  • Visit to 2 main basilicas,
  • Hotel Pickup (from centrally located hotels),
  • Headsets.
Cancellation Policy

Free cancellation up to 1 day before tour starts.

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