Rome | The Heart of the Empire

Colosseum
Colosseum
Arch of Constantine
Arch of Constantine
Roman Forum
Roman Forum
Roman Forum
Roman Forum
Trajan's Column
Trajan's Column
Saint Peter's Basilicata
Saint Peter's Basilicata
Trevi fountain
Trevi fountain
Piazza Navona
Piazza Navona
Pantheon
Pantheon
The genius of the Emperor Hadrian and his architects is revealed in the mighty dome of the Pantheon, which he commissioned. It is still the largest unreinforced concrete dome in the world
The genius of the Emperor Hadrian and his architects is revealed in the mighty dome of the Pantheon, which he commissioned. It is still the largest unreinforced concrete dome in the world
View across the Tiber towards the mausoleum of Hadrian, now known as the Castel Sant’Angelo
View across the Tiber towards the mausoleum of Hadrian, now known as the Castel Sant’Angelo
Adam receives the gift of life from God in Michelangelo’s painting on the Sistine Chapel ceiling. We have arranged a private viewing
Adam receives the gift of life from God in Michelangelo’s painting on the Sistine Chapel ceiling. We have arranged a private viewing
Sperlonga town centre
Sperlonga town centre
Villa d Este Fountain, Tivoli
Villa d Este Fountain, Tivoli

Rome is an exhilarating and intimate destination where the glories of its ancient past, the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Pantheon exist beside museums, art-soaked churches and medieval piazzas: evidence of Rome’s continued power when its empire was no more. This is the perfect introduction to the ‘Eternal City’ led by expert archaeologists who bring to life triumphs, tragedies and political intrigue that characterised the Roman empire.

We have special access to the Colosseum and the world-renowned Capitoline Museum. Follow in the footsteps of slaves and Ceasars; saints and sinners in this unique exploration of over 2000 years of Roman history.

2019 Highlights

  • Go underground for a tour at the Colosseum
  • The Galleria Borghese and its collection of antiquities
  • The Ara Pacis with its stupendous reliefs
  • See the vast collections of the Vatican Museum
  • Explore Ostia Antica which is as intact as Pompeii

 

 

 

 

 

 

2020 Highlights

  • The sprawling villa of Emperor Hadrian at Tivoli, its halls and pavilions covering more ground than most cities
  • The Ara Pacis, Augustus’ altar to the restoration of peace with its splendid reliefs
  • Explore Portus, the great port of Rome that was created by both Claudius and Trajan

Themes

  • Romans
  • Medieval
  • Historic Churches
  • Great Cities
  • Cultural Excursion

Practicalities

  • Special Access
  • Just One Hotel
  • All Inclusive

Itinerary 2019

Day 1

We fly from London and upon arrival in Rome, we transfer to our hotel. A relaxed first day as we prepare for our tour.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: Dinner included

Day 2

Our adventure begins at the Colosseum, the iconic Flavian Amphitheatre – the largest of its type ever constructed. Here we enjoy a specially-arranged visit to the underground service tunnels and upper levels, offering unprecedented access to the atmospheric corridors in which so many lives were lived and broken. Following lunch we take an afternoon walk through the heart of ancient Rome, stopping at the Forum, site of profound historical events such as the Gracchi riots, Caesar’s funeral, and the triumph of Alaric the Goth. We end the day with a walk along the later Imperial Fora, an elaborate series of ruined public squares, finishing at Trajan’s Column

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 3

This morning we enjoy a guided visit around the vast collections of the Vatican Museum, amassed by popes across the centuries. In the afternoon we enjoy some free time to explore Saint Peter’s Basilica, a jewel of the Renaissance, and for centuries the largest church in the world. This evening, we have Special Access to the Vatican Museums, including the extraordinary Sistine Chapel, allowing us to marvel at Michelangelo’s masterpiece, completely uninterrupted. We also enjoy a private viewing of the ornate Raphael Rooms.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 4

We visit the Borghese Gallery, a 17th-century villa, which houses a substantial selection of the amazing art collection gathered by the Borghese, one of Rome’s most illustrious families. We continue to Montemartini Museum and after lunch we drive to the Pyramid of Gaius Cestius, a striking monument which has featured in works by both Shelley and Hardy. Tucked inside the Aurelian walls, and adjacent to the tomb of Cestius is the “Non-Catholic” Cemetery of Rome. 

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 5

This morning we visit the Pantheon, the inspirational building built by Emperor Hadrian as a shrine to the Roman gods. We continue on to the bustling square of Piazza Navona, former stadium of Emperor Domitian. Our guided walk ends at the Ara Pacis. This afternoon we spend at leisure.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 6

We travel to Ostia Antica, the original port of ancient Rome. Parts of this sprawling site are as well preserved as Pompeii. We view the forum, baths, temples, private houses and tenements, as well as the warehouses and wharves used for storing supplies for the imperial capital. We then transfer to the airport for our return flights home.

Meals: Breakfast included

Itinerary 2020

Day 1

Fly from London and upon arrival in Rome, we transfer to our central hotel.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: Dinner included

Day 2

Our adventure begins at the Colosseum, the iconic Flavian Amphitheatre – the largest of its type ever constructed. Here, we see the atmospheric corridors in which so many lives were lived and broken. Next, we visit the adjacent triumphal Arch of Constantine, before visiting the imperial palaces on the Palatine Hill, including the Cryptoporticus and the Roman Forum, which was the very centre of Roman power.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 3

A day exploring more of the ancient city centre, the Imperial Fora, including the game-changing architectural space of Trajan’s Forum and the huge market complex that he built for the people of the city. We then move on to the remains of the baths of Diocletian, and the National Roman Museum.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 4

Originally a swamp, the riverside land outside the city walls found use first as a military training ground and then as the venue for consular elections. Later, competing dynasts oversaw huge building projects. We will visit the stadium of Domitian, Pompey’s theatre, the Ara Pacis, and also the adjacent mausoleum of Augustus. We have some free time in the afternoon follows.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 5

A day out of Rome at Tivoli awaits. First to the huge country villa built for Hadrian and his court. The vast halls and galleries were a mine of treasures for the early archaeologists. Later, we go up to Tivoli to pay a visit to the grandiose 16th century Villa D’Este, built by Cardinal Ippolito D’Este, son of Lucrezia Borgia. Here, we explore its Renaissance fantasy of fountains and its stunning gardens.

Hotel: Albergo Santa Chiara
Meals: All meals included

Day 6

On our way to the airport, we visit Portus, the great harbour built by Claudius and Trajan to supply Rome. The huge warehouses, docks and harbour basin lie secreted in woodland right by Leonardo da Vinci airport.

Meals: Breakfast included

What's Included

  1. Expert Guide Lecturer
  2. Tour Manager
  3. Local Travel - Private a/c coach
  4. Meals - Most meals included with wine at dinner
  5. Entries & Tips - Entry to all sites in programme; tips included
  6. Field Notes
  7. Hotels
  8. Flights

Travel Information

For full information about Passport validity and Visa requirements as well as Health and Vaccination information please click here.

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2020 Tour Details

Fri 7th Feb - Wed 12th Feb

Available

£1,895

Full Price £1945 Save £50

inc.

sgl supp: £195

ROM20A

Led By: Dr Eireann Marshall

Fri 17th Apr - Wed 22nd Apr

Available

£2,195

Full Price £2245 Save £50

inc.

sgl supp: £265

ROM20B

Led By: Dr Simon Elliott

Fri 6th Nov - Wed 11th Nov

Available

£2,145

Full Price £2195 Save £50

inc.

sgl supp: £375

ROM20C

Led By: Professor Tony King

Fri 4th Dec - Wed 9th Dec

Available

£2,045

Full Price £2095 Save £50

inc.

sgl supp: £265

ROM20D

Led By: Dr Andrew Souter

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