The Colosseum, also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre, is one of the most iconic landmarks in the world. Made entirely of sand concrete, the oval amphitheatre was designed to hold up to 70,000 spectators, all at a single time! Each year, over 5 million people visit the amphitheatre. These numbers translate into crazy lines at the Colosseum entrance, with a waiting period that can last anywhere between 2 to 4 hours.
A skip the line Colosseum ticket works on multiple levels to ensure that you have a great experience in Rome. Apart from From how to get ahold of these quick-entry tickets to insider tips on how to make the most of your Colosseum, Palatine Hill and Roman Forum experience, here is your ultimate guide to exploring the famous ruins of Rome's ancient empire.
Wait times - What to Expect at Colosseum?
The Colosseum is one of the most popular sites in Rome with thousands who flock in daily to visit this ancient amphitheatre set in the heart of Rome. On a good day, the Colosseum receives over 11,000 visitors every day. However, during the high tourist season, you can expect as many as 30,000 visitors a day!
Seeing these numbers should give you a fair idea of the queues you can expect outside Colosseum on a bad day. The queues can sometimes go on for 2-4 hours and standing under the scorching Italian sun is no fun.
Also, there is a strictly imposed limit of a maximum 3,000 people in the Colosseum at any given time, which means you inevitably have to wait a bit before entering. However, here are a few handy hacks to avoid a majority of the queues and skip the lines at Colosseum
5 Tried & Tested Hacks to Skip The Lines at Colosseum
1. Go via the Roman Forum entrance
This one's known to very few people, so hear us out. Your Colosseum ticket allows you entry to the Roman Forum & Palatine Hill. Most people prefer to visit the Colosseum first and then make their way to the other two. However, if you reverse the route and visit the Roman Forum first, you'll spend no more than 15 minutes to enter the premises! Once you're done with the Roman Forum, you can make your way to the Colosseum and simply walk in because you already have the tickets in your hand. Note: The Roman Forum entrance is located at the end of Via Cavour.
2. Grab Colosseum Skip The Line tickets online
Colosseum Skip The Line tickets are easily available online and are designed to help you save time at a small premium. It is completely worth the extra few euros - considering the time and energy you'd be saving. Go for them without a second thought!
3. Sign up for a Colosseum Guided Tour
Having a knowledgeable guide to explain the history, regale you with facts and stories adds to your experience ten folds. The best part being, guided tours grant your skip the line access from a dedicated entrance. Meet your guide outside the Colosseum and simply walk into the Colosseum with him - zero hassles!
4. Buy yourself a City Pass - Go Rome Pass, OMNIA Pass or the Roma City Pass
There are many city passes in Rome that gives you Skip The Line access to the Colosseum + other top attractions in Rome. Some of the passes you must consider are the Go Rome Pass, OMNIA Pass & the Roma Pass.
5. Visit the Colosseum at Night
The Colosseum by Night tour is 2.5 hour long experience that starts at 9:30 PM. This unique experience also includes an interesting Colosseum underground tour during which your guide will take you to exclusive parts of the Colosseum open only at night. Note, there are only a limited number of groups allowed inside for the Colosseum night tour and is considerably costlier than normal tours.
Skip The Line Colosseum Tickets vs Guided Tours - What to Choose?
There are several ways to get ahold of Colosseum tickets. The first and most obvious option is to get your tickets straight from the Colosseum entrance. While this is definitely an option, it's not the best one. A regular entry ticket for one adult costs €12 (plus €2 processing fee), but you will have to stand in a very, very long line to get them.
To purchase a regular entry ticket, you can expect a waiting time of anywhere between 2-4 hours, depending on when you’re visiting. (Weekends and anytime during the holiday season generally see the longest waiting times.) You will first have to stand in a line to buy your ticket, again in another line to enter, and after that, you guessed it - one more line to pass through a security check.
Skip-the-Line Colosseum Tickets
The easiest solution to avoiding the Colosseum’s dreaded lines: Priority Colosseum tickets. A standard skip-the-line ticket includes priority entry to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill. It costs €15 (plus €3 processing fee). This is only €3 more than the onsite ticket - a price well worth the skip the line perks.
Keep in mind - regardless of where you get your tickets from, there are no tickets that allow you to skip the security line. This is mandatory as a safety regulation. In addition, skip-the-line tickets (again, irrespective of where you book them) means that you get to skip the ticketing line - not the entry line. The ticketing line is what will easily add hours to your wait time - so avoiding it will make a huge difference.
Any tour of the Colosseum will be an incredible experience. However, while a self-guided tour is the cheapest option, there is not much information provided at any of the three sites. On a guided tour, you will not only get to see the Colosseum, you'll get to experience it. The explanations and stories you get with a professional guide make the Colosseum arena come to life and undoubtedly enrich the experience. In addition, on a guided tour only will you get the chance to explore areas off limits to the general public - the underground tunnels and the upper tier. A visit to the Colosseum will likely be a once in a lifetime experience, so if you have the time and money to spend on a guided tour, it is definitely the way to go.
Here's a quick guide on how to choose the best Colosseum Guided tour.
Colosseum: Insider Tips
- While it might seem silly and rather obvious to mention, previous tourist accounts clearly tell another story -they’re tip: be sure to eat a big meal before starting your tour. The area is large and you’ll be walking a lot; the last thing you want is to hamper your experience by feeling super hungry mid-way through the tour.
- As mentioned above, snacks are highly suggested. However, try and avoid buying food/drinks from vendors right outside the Colosseum. The prices are quite exorbitant.
- Visiting any place late in the night offers an enticing thrill and the Colosseum is no exception. Amp up the excitement with a nighttime Colosseum tour. In addition to the unique experience, you can enjoy a relatively private tour, as the crowds will be at a minimum. The view of Rome at night alone is worth the price of admission!
- If you are planning on visiting the Colosseum during the day, arrive before 8:30 AM to avoid the mad crowds. Even if you have a skip the line ticket, coming in early will only allow you to have a considerably peaceful experience exploring ancient Rome.
- Pre-purchase your tickets online. The ticketing office line is not something you want to deal with, especially on a hot day! Online tickets offer a fast-track pass into this popular attraction.
- Read our complete guide on what to see inside the Colosseum before your visit to not miss the most important parts of it.
All You Need to Know Before Visiting Colosseum
Seeing that the Colosseum is an uber popular tourist destination, there are plenty of ways you can reach the attraction. While you can always opt for a cab from wherever you’re staying, expect to pay a pretty penny. Cab fares are not cheap and it’s not uncommon for tourists to get overcharged. Instead, checkout some of the (cheap) public transport options below that’ll get you to the Colosseum easily and safely.
Line 75, 81, 673, 175, 204
Line B “Colosseo”
The metro runs from 5:30 AM to 11:30 PM, Sunday to Thursday, and until 1:30 AM on Friday and Saturday.
If you have reached the Termini train station, the main railway station of Rome, there are two ways you can reach the Colosseum:
1. Via Metro
If you’re short on time, taking the metro from Termini train station would be your best bet. When you disembark the train, follow the white-on-red M signs towards the metro station. Once there, you'll find ticket vending machines. Get your tickets, proceed to the fare gates, insert your ticket and.you’re good to go. Be sure to take the correct line (line B with blue signs) in the right direction (southwards towards Laurentina). The Colosseum is only two stops away. When you exit the station, you will see the monument directly across the street.
2. Via Foot
If you’re in the mood for a leisurely hike through the charming lanes of Rome, you can walk from the train station to the Colosseum. The average walking time is 30 minutes, so only go for this option if you have ample time on hand.
Colosseum Timings and Hours
After its reopening in February 2021, the Colosseum is open from Monday to Friday between 10:30 AM to 04:30 PM, with final admission at 03:30 PM.
The entrance to the Colosseum is on Piazza del Colosseo
The only entrance to the Roman Forum is at Via Fori Imperiali
Palatine Hill can be accessed through Via S. Gregorio.
Learn all about the three Colosseum entrances and which one you should head to after purchasing Skip The Line tickets to the Colosseum.
Colosseum Rules and Regulations
- Please note that for safety reasons the Colosseum can only accommodate up to 3,000 people at once. If there’s an increased demand on any particular day, expect delay in access to the site. (Another reason to pre-book your tickets online and secure your spot.)
- All visitors and their belongings will be screened at the security checkpost outside the Colosseum.
- It is strictly forbidden to enter with backpacks, handbags and luggage. There is no storage facility at any of the three sites. If you come with a bag that is too large you will be denied entry.
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