Catacombs of Rome

Explore this ancient burial site comprising dozens of catacombs and miles of passageways beneath the streets of Rome.

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Catacombs of Rome: Our most recommended tours and activities

Rome: Capuchin Crypts Skip-the-Line Ticket and Guided Tour

1. Rome: Capuchin Crypts Skip-the-Line Ticket and Guided Tour

Start your visit at the Capuchin Museums to learn about the place's culture and spirituality. Continue towards the Crypt of the Three Skeletons, the only area where the human skeleton can be seen in its unadorned entirety. Next, visit the Crypt of the Leg Bones and Thigh Bones. Admire the Crypt of the Pelvises, which contains 2 Capuchins serenely reclining in an arched position. Look at the crosses on the ground, which mark the graves of the 7 Capuchins. Stroll through the Crypt of the Skulls and check out its famous hourglass. Learn about how, when the Capuchins left their old friary near the Trevi Fountain, they decided to transfer the bones of friars who had been buried under the Church of Saint Bonaventure. In accordance with Capuchin law, which did not allow burials to take place within the churches, an underground cemetery was designed. Here, they deposited the bones brought from the old friary. Since then, the crypt has been the burial place of the Capuchins.

Rome: Official Guided Tour of the Catacombs of St. Callixtus

2. Rome: Official Guided Tour of the Catacombs of St. Callixtus

First, listen to the history of the catacombs: from their origin to decline, and their rediscovery in the modern era. Learn how they were dug and administrated. Enter the crypt of the 3rd-century Popes, where 5 of the 9 tombstones of Rome's bishops who were buried here are still preserved. Then admire a slab of marble where some famous verses of Pope Damasus were engraved. Next, cross a narrow arch and enter the crypt where St. Cecilia, the patron saint of music, was first buried. Be inspired by her history while contemplating the crypt's decorative frescoes and a copy of the statue made by Maderno, depicting the martyr's body when a reconnaissance was made in 1599. From the crypt of Santa Cecilia, continue your tour through the oldest part of the catacomb. Admire its majestic galleries and the beautiful cubicles of "sacraments". Finally, walk through the maze of tunnels dug in peacetime, trying to find your way out. Along the way, see various archaeological finds of funeral furniture before coming up to see the sunlight again.

Rome: Catacombs & Crypts Tour with Roman Aqueducts

3. Rome: Catacombs & Crypts Tour with Roman Aqueducts

Escape the crowds of the Colosseum and Vatican, and explore the darker side of Rome on a 3-hour and 15-minute small group tour of the ancient catacombs and crypts. Venture to parts of the city that few visitors ever see, traveling between sites by air-conditioned minibus. First, follow your guide to 3 memorable sites, each revealing the extraordinary secrets of Ancient Rome. They include the labyrinthine Roman Catacombs that were part burial ground and part refuge for the persecuted early Christians of Ancient Rome. Then, visit the Capuchin Crypt, known locally as the “Bone Chapel,” and marvel at the walls, decorated with the bones more than 4,000 monks. To finish out the day in style, visit perhaps one of the most spectacular sites in all of Rome - the Roman Aqueducts. Enjoy time to explore and understand this monumental landmark from a stunning vantage point.

Rome: Catacomb Guided Tour with Transfer

4. Rome: Catacomb Guided Tour with Transfer

This underground tour of the Catacombs takes you deeper into the unusual history of Rome, far below its busy streets and towering monuments to the concealed side of this ancient city. The tour begins at one of the most spectacular centrally located squares in Rome: Venice Square, next to the Town hall. A VIP minibus fully equipped with air conditioning will take you to the ancient Roman catacombs. Located just outside of the city and hidden deep underground, the catacombs were created in the second century in response to a shortage of land for deceased’s remains. Dating back almost 2,000 years to the 2nd century AD, this extensive network of tunnels snaking underground was once both a burial ground and a place of worship for the first Christians in Rome. With an expert guide you’ll explore these extensive tunnels lined with tombs carved right out of the rock, and hear the fascinating history of these sacred places. Combine your tour with the additional option to visit the Trevi district underground. Explore the ruins and hidden passages beneath the Trevi district and the surrounding area.

Rome: Roman Catacombs Semi-Private Tour

5. Rome: Roman Catacombs Semi-Private Tour

Meet your guide in the city center and head towards the Appian Way in a comfortable minivan. Reach one of the largest and oldest catacombs of Rome and venture 52 feet (16 meters) below the surface into the otherworldly crypts of Domitilla. Explore its endless maze of underground burial chambers, spread across 4 levels. Be captivated by ancient wall paintings of mythological and biblical figures and discover the religious symbolism of the frescoes. Learn about the shift from paganism to Christianity and hear about early martyrs and persecutions. Live the excitement of gradually exploring different layers of history. Complete your underworld experience in the 4th-century subterranean Basilica of Nereus and Achilleus. Then jump back in the minivan return to the city center.

Rome: Appian Way Catacombs and Aqueducts Private Bike Tour

6. Rome: Appian Way Catacombs and Aqueducts Private Bike Tour

Swap the hustle and bustle of the big city for a day in the countryside in this fantastic 3-hour or 5-hour electric bike tour. Your guide will be waiting for you at Lungotevere delle Armi 44, where this wonderful adventure will begin. Your route is Via Appia Antica (Appian Way), one of the most important access roads of the city of the Roman Empire. You can follow your guide through imposing aqueducts, including landmarks such as the Catacombs of San Callisto, and will also cross the Regional Park of Appia Antica. You have the option to take a 3-hour tour by electric or manual bicycle, or can instead opt to choose the 5-hour tour which also includes a visit to the Catacombs of San Callisto or San Sebastiano.

Rome: Catacombs of Saint Sebastian Guided Tour

7. Rome: Catacombs of Saint Sebastian Guided Tour

Wander through the ancient catacombs of Saint Sebastian that lay below the streets of Rome. Learn about their history and former uses as you walk among the tombs of prominent Christian leaders. In the company of an expert guide, walk through underground galleries and residential areas and admire remarkable wall decorations. Witness the burial spot of Saint Peter and Paul and admire the basilica built by Emperor Constantine in the shape of a Roman circus.

Rome: Catacombs of Priscilla Guided Tour

8. Rome: Catacombs of Priscilla Guided Tour

Discover the ancient Catacombs of Priscilla that lie beneath the streets of Rome. Learn about these interesting places as you walk among the tombs of martyrs and popes. Wander among the large and irregular galleries where ancient Christians once buried their dead. Visit the cryptoporticus with its Greek chapel and large underground chamber. Explore among the tombs of saints and other important religious figures martyred under various Roman emperors. Check out the basilica built by Pope St. Silverstro as well as hundreds of collected fragments of sarcophagi found during excavations.

Rome: Catacombs Underground Tour, Ticket, and Transfer

9. Rome: Catacombs Underground Tour, Ticket, and Transfer

Embark on an in-depth experience, during which you'll discover the legacy of a prominent and fascinating past. Beginning from the meeting point near the Colosseum, relax on a transfer in an air-conditioned vehicle to one of the most exciting places in Rome, the Catacombs. Accompanied by an expert guide, head off on an exclusive tour and appreciate this fascinating place's real story and mystery.  On tour, travel through time to discover a hidden and parallel world in which, for centuries, Jews and Christians have looked after and venerated the dead. Pass by the majestic Aurelian Walls to come to the archaeological area of the Ancient Appian Way. Deep in the green Roman countryside, descend into the ancient world of the Catacombs, a complex network of underground tunnels among the longest in the world, occupying an area of about fifteen hectares and consisting of about 37 miles of tunnels on several levels. The specific catacomb visited, San Calisto, San Sebastiano, or Santa Domitilla, will depend on the day. In any of the catacombs, you will have the opportunity to see ancient frescoes, crypts with inscriptions carved on the walls, niches with the remains of skeletons, small mausoleums, sarcophagi, tombs, and small chapels, which still today, after about 2,000 years, are used to celebrate religious rites. After the tour, back in the sunlight, your driver will take you back to the original starting point next to the Colosseum.

Rome: Catacombs of Domitilla Guided Tour

10. Rome: Catacombs of Domitilla Guided Tour

Peer into the distant past and creep through the crypts and passages of the Catacombs of Domitilla. Follow your guide to learn of the chilling past of the ancient burial ground, which dates back to the first century. Discover the hidden treasures in each room which are prized by Roman historians. See exquisite frescoes by both Christian and pagan worshippers which are being carefully restored to this day. Appreciate the craftsmanship of the original builders and the dedication of present-day custodians, who tell the story of Rome’s conversion to Christianity. In the “Hypogeum of the Flavians”, pay respects at the tombs of the Christian members of the Domitilla family, and learn about their troubled past. On the second level, visit the only underground basilica in Rome, where the bodies of the Holy Martyrs Nereus and Achilleus lie. Learn about the ongoing efforts to recover the full expanse of these unique Catacombs, and the priceless artworks and artifacts that are stowed within.

Planning Your Visit

  • Check opening times in advance, which vary.

    Some of the catacombs are closed on certain days of the week, so be sure to check in advance that the site you wish to visit is open!

  • How to get there

    A great many of the most important catacombes are located on the Via Appia, and it's very easy to access by foot or the hop on, hop off Archeobus service.

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Opening hours vary, please check times of individual catacombs you wish to visit.
  • Is it expensive?
    Ticket prices vary by location.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Some entrance fees include a guided tour, please see individual catacomb listings.
  • How to get there
    Walk along the Via Appia, or take the hop on, hop off bus!
  • Additional information
    ** Varied hours mean advanced planning is key!*

Other Sightseeing Options in Catacombs of Rome

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What people are saying about Catacombs of Rome

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 4,801 reviews

Emmanuelle, our bike guide, conducted us safely through the streets of Rome to the Appian Way (Via Appia). He is passionate about his city, its history, and biking. When someone loves what he does like Emmanuelle does, it makes the excursion so much more enjoyable. The e-bikes are an absolute requirement for the journey through the Roman countryside. We enjoyed our homemade tastings on a gorgeous little farm along the way. I highly recommend this excursion.

What a fabulous way to see some of Rome city then you are taken into the quiet beautiful countryside full of history and along with the visit to the catacombs. This excursion would be the highlight to our latest visit to Rome. Massimo was a fantastic tour guide, extremely knowledgeable about all we saw along the way and just a great guy

The Appian Way provides a beautiful respite from the city. There’s much to see and do. Our guide Alberto knew a lot and was friendly, had great pacing, and gave us an excellent tour. Unfortunately one of the bike sprockets broke with an uphill gear change, but he was able to figure out a fix and get us home safely.

A glorious ride down the River Tiber, past the Roman Circus, onto the Appian Road, into the Catacombs, to a natural spring, and through a forest. Of course, none of this would have meant half as much without our charming, informative, and entirely entertaining guide, Alessia. A wonderful day for my son and me.

Perfect if you like this kind of thing. Fascinating and interesting. We got told that this wont be «fixed» as it is aging and that the pope(? Not sure) could be closing it in a few years. So I would definitely recommend a visit while it is still possible!