Rome’s Colosseum

One of the very first destinations on your list to visit in Italy should be the Colosseum. This iconic structure is almost synonymous with Rome, and aside from the Vatican City, is one of Italy’s most popular attractions. It also ties in very nicely with almost any tour of the Vatican City, as it can be found at the very heart of the city of Rome.

The Colosseum stands as an example of the might of the Flavian dynasty. Construction began on this great structure in 72 AD under emperor Titus Flavius Vespasianus. Though his rule would not outlive the arduous construction time, his heir Titus Flavius Caesar Vespasianus Augustus had come into power when the construction was completed 8 years later. Though the main structure had been completed, Titus Flavius Caesar Domitianus Augustus oversaw further modifications between 81 and 96 CE. This means the construction took well over 20 years to complete, and even though parts of the Colosseum are in ruins, you can still appreciate all the work that went into this structure over those 2 decades.

Curiously, the Colosseum was not named after any of the Flavian emperors, but rather after the nearby Colossus of Nero statue which was nearby. Though the 30m high statue no longer stands, having been taken down in the 11th century for materials, the statue’s base still remains, and marks the spot where the Colossus of Nero once stood. With this knowledge in mind, visiting this base can be a truly fascinating experience and can really tie in nicely with your tour of the Colosseum.

The Colosseum owes its current state to both earthquakes and stone robbers over the centuries. But while it may appear to be crumbling, this 2000 year old structure is still incredibly resilient and sturdy. Walking through the stands or down in the center, you can just imagine the atmosphere and the noise that must have erupted from the 80 000 people in the Colosseum as gladiatorial contests, mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions and plays and re-enactments took place.

The Colosseum is one of the world’s most well known attractions, and whether you’re on a tour of Italy, Rome or the Vatican City, you should be sure to add this magnificent destination to your itinerary.

Check out our Rome Tour with Vatican and Colosseum today!

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