Roman Forum
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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

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

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

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

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

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!

Roman Forum: Our 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 to visit
    The Forum opens at 8:30AM daily (except holidays) and closes an hour before sunset.
  • What is the price?
    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 tips
    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

Great experiece! Half day full of ancient history.

Walking throu the Colloseum and listening to the stories played by the audio guide transfers you into ancient historical times and helps you understand mentality of both ruling as well as the lower class (emperors and slaves), events and happenings. The Roman Forum is another long walk though history, ancient civilization of an amazingly high level of culture and civilization. Great experience! Beside the Vatican don't miss this tour!

The tour was really good! I recommend it

Alexandra, our tour guide, was extraordinary. Always aware of any group member that was staying behind. Very knowledgeable and patient. Stopping when needing along the route. She even offered to stay a little time longer after the tour in case anyone needed tips or recommendations for Rome.

Amazing tour! The guide was amazing and engaging.

The your was amazing. The guide was so engaging and knowledgeable. We really did not want the tour to finish. My teen daughter asked if we could do it all over again. That says something :)

A great tour guide who spoke fluent English, lots of facts.

A great tour with lots of amazing sights and detail. Meeting point was well recognised and organised with staff wearing pink bibs. The tour itself was fascinating and the use of individual ear pieces was a huge benefit although only lasted 2 hours instead of the stated 3 hours. That said, we thoroughly enjoyed the experience and would use this company again. Definitely recommend ticket purchase beforehand to beat the queues which were huge.

Skip the Line: Colosseum and Ancient Rome Walking Tour Reviewed by a GetYourGuide Customer, 01/03/2018

Great tour. Skip the line makes good sense . Very good guide

I recommend this tour. Well organised company , excellent guide, good knowledge and sense of humour. 3 hours to experience Ancient Rome ... worth it !

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