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Roman Forum: Tours & Tickets

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5 historical facts about the Roman Forum's development

Unlike the other forums across Rome's empire, the ancient capital's center of public life wasn't simply planned and built, but evolved slowly as the great city grew. Here are five facts about the original Forum Romanum's history!

It was a meeting point before a stone was laid

It was a meeting point before a stone was laid

Situated on a marshy plain between the key Capitoline and Palatine Hills of Rome, the site naturally became a local meeting point long before an official Forum was planned.

The marshland was drained by Tarquin the Elder

The marshland was drained by Tarquin the Elder

Legend has it that the initial Comitium emerged after both hilltop tribes made peace. Until Rome's 5th king built the Cloaca Maxima, most of the site was too swampy to be usable.

It served several uses

It served several uses

The forum served as the center of Rome's public life for centuries, hosting public speeches, military processions, criminal trials, gladiatorial matches, markets, and much more!

It became home to early Roman Catholic monuments

It became home to early Roman Catholic monuments

Constantine I built the Basilica of Maxentius in 312AD as the last major expansion of the forum. Over time, several of the other temples were converted into Christian churches.

Rising ground made it impossible to maintain

Rising ground made it impossible to maintain

Flooding of the Tiber river and erosion from its surrounding hills caused the ground to rise, slowing covering the monuments. By the Middle Ages the site was being used as a pasture!

Our insider tips

When to visit?

Tickets are valid for two days but also cover the Colosseum and Palatine Hill. That's a lot to see so make sure you arrive there nice and early on both days! The Forum opens from 8:30AM (except holidays), but closing times vary depending on the season. You'll have more time between April and September.
If not booking in advance, use the Palatine Hill ticket office, as the queue will be mercifully short compared to that at the Colosseum!

How to get there?

Don't let the maps fool you! Although there are Metro stations nearby, none of them are that close to an actual entrance! Colosseo (by the Colosseum, in case it's not obvious) is the closest but you'll still need to walk to the main entrance up Via dei Fori Imperiali. Otherwise, take either the 51, 85, 87, 118, or 810 bus to the stop Fori Imperiali.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    The Forum opens at 8:30AM daily (except holidays) and closes an hour before sunset.
  • Is it expensive?
    The adult ticket is just € 12,00 and is valid for two days, for the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.
  • Will I need a guide?
    It will definitely help. Might be worth it to check out our best-selling tours.
  • How to get there
    Plan to walk from the Colosseo Metro stop, or take the 51, 85, 87, 118 or 810 bus to the Fori Imperiali stop.
  • Additional information
    Admission is free the first Sunday of the month! | There is a € 2 booking fee for booking in advance and skipping the queue.

What people are saying about Roman Forum

Overall rating
4.5 / 5
based on 57,776 reviews

Organized and informative in a crowded space!

Definitely do this tour over the regular tours where you only see the mid-levels of the Colosseum. Our guide was great helping us navigate through the crowded levels, and I couldn't imagine not going down to the basement levels where they kept the gladiators and animals that fought in the arena, plus the birds-eye view from the top levels. Not to be missed if you have any interest in a tour of the Colosseum. (Tip: Remember to use the bathroom right before tour so you don't need to go during the tour, which you won't able to since there really isn't a break for an hour and a half; conversely, you should bring a bottle of water bc it gets hot and there are public fountains all over the Forum for refilling.)

Roman Forum tour with TOM was incredible.

We went on the Coliseum and Roman Forum tour. The Roman Forum tour was led by Tom. Overall I think it was possibly the best tour I have ever been on. Tom went through the history of Rome and its emperors and tied it into the different parts of the Roman Forum as we walked through. He was extremely knowledgeable and engaging. His final "soliloquy" on the Forum was delivered so well and was so moving I was about to cry. He was THAT good. He was also very considerate of the heat, and always tried to find shade and made sure people had opportunities to get water. Five stars for sure.

Easy! Saved precious two or three hours by purchasing this.

It was so easy to purchase and to redeem. My first time in Italy so I was a bit skeptical that this would work, but all the attendants at the Colosseum seemed to know this deal when i presented my voucher. They knew where to directed me. I saw everything and finished enjoying the experience while the same people without the skip the line tickets were still in line.

Good tour. Viviana our guide was very knowledgeable.

Good tours you skip all the lines. In the museam and chapel is busy but tbatvis to be expected. Our guide viviana was great. The worst thing about the tour was the other people in our group. Constantly complaining about how long it was and some were rude. It clearly states the tour goes for 3 hours. But it's was a good tour. It should not be missed

Rome in One Day: Low Cost Vatican & Colosseum Tours Reviewed by

Great tour. Very informative and not too long

All guides were great. I forgot the names of the girl that met us and the guide for the colosseum but both were great. TOM who took us for the Roman Forum was exceptional!! He was such a great story teller and told the history of the Roman Empire in great detail but made it so fun and interesting! Would recommend this tour for sure.

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