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How to Get Off the Beaten Path in Rome

How to Get Off the Beaten Path in Rome

Rome may be home to world-famous sights such as the Colosseum and Vatican, but there are still plenty of hidden gems in the Eternal City. Here are a few off-the-beaten-path attractions that relieve you from the chaos and crowds of the headliners. 

Palazzo Doria Pamphilj

Crowds in the Vatican Museums can overwhelm even the most ardent art lover; this ornate, 16th-century palace is an excellent alternative. Peruse hundreds of works by the likes of Raphael, Caravaggio, Titian, and Velázquez in lavish halls that you’re likely to have to yourself. 

Baths of Caracalla

If you want to avoid the crush at the Colosseum but still get your archeology fix, head to the Baths of Caracalla, one of the world’s largest and best-preserved thermal complexes. Tour what remains of the ground floor with a guide to best appreciate the size and opulence of the 3rd-century ruins, formerly Emperor Caracalla’s public baths. 

Appian Way

When the urban bustle of downtown Rome gets too much, do as the ancient Romans did and escape from the city via Appian Way. As the first Roman road built during the Imperial Age, this paved route is lined with archaeological ruins and historic sites. Join a bike or Vespa tour to admire the scenic stretch from Porta San Sebastiano to the Roman aqueduct.

Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls

Rome has dozens—if not hundreds—of churches but most visitors only enter St. Peter’s Basilica. St. Paul Outside the Walls (San Paolo Fuori le Mura), thought to be built over the tomb of Paul the Apostle, provides a quieter alternative to St. Peter’s. Plus, the church’s interior is particularly glorious, with 80 columns and extensive mosaic decorations.

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8 Tours and Activities

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Exclusive | Caracalla Bath Private guided tour VIP Entry: Hotel Pick-up Drop-off

Exclusive | Caracalla Bath Private guided tour VIP Entry: Hotel Pick-up Drop-off

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The Baths of Caracalla are widely considered among the most important ruins in Rome, but their secrets are hidden under thousands of years of history. With your private guide to lead the way, explore the baths and learn of life in Rome under rulers including Septimius Severus and Caracalla. Marvel at the baths’ ancient porticoes and vaulted rooms, and discover decorative mosaics among the historic ruins.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$147.88
Price varies by group size
From
$147.88
Price varies by group size

Circus Maximus Caracalla Bath and Aventine Hill Tour in Rome
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Circus Maximus Caracalla Bath and Aventine Hill Tour in Rome

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Explore several of Ancient Rome’s most famous sites during this small group walking tour. Learn about historic bathing culture at the Baths of Caracalla, the second largest thermal bath of Rome, before visiting Circus Maximus, the stadium where chariot races were held. Climb one of the seven hills of Rome, Aventine Hill, for panoramic views over the city.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$49.30
From
$49.30

Ancient Appian Way and Roman Countryside Bike Tour

Ancient Appian Way and Roman Countryside Bike Tour

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Ride part of the way along the ancient Appian Way road without getting lost on this bike tour. You’ll pass centuries of history as you cycle through the Roman countryside on the route that dates back to the fifth century BCE. Your experienced guide will show you famous and lesser-known sites along the route, and make sure you have enough rest and photo stops for an enjoyable, active day out.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$82.81
Price varies by group size
From
$82.81
Price varies by group size

Christianity in the Ancient Rome Private Tour

Christianity in the Ancient Rome Private Tour

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Explore some of the history of Christianity in Ancient Rome on this private tour to some of the city’s many churches. Learn about the time that St Peter and St Paul spent in Rome, including their imprisonment during the reign of Roman Emperor Nero; visit the Basilica of St Sabina, an early Christian landmark; and see the Basilica of St Paul Outside the Walls, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$314.25
Price varies by group size
From
$314.25
Price varies by group size

Private Tour: Basilicas of Rome

Private Tour: Basilicas of Rome

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Go behind the scenes to discover the five major basilicas of Rome and learn about the influence of Christianity on the Eternal City during this in-depth private guided tour. Get a peek at priceless relics—believed to be thorns from Jesus’s crown—and marvel at Renaissance artworks and stunning architectural gems. Tours include free time for lunch and comfortable transfers in your own private vehicle—plus the option to explore the mysterious catacombs.
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  • 7 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$314.25
Price varies by group size
From
$314.25
Price varies by group size

Doria Pamphilj Palace Gallery and Museum Private Tour with Local Guide

Doria Pamphilj Palace Gallery and Museum Private Tour with Local Guide

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Enjoy skip-the-line entrance to the magnificent Doria Pamphilj Palace on this private tour. Explore the grand 17th-century palace, marvel at the antique furnishings, peek into the Throne Room, then visit the gallery to admire paintings by masters including Bernini, Brueghel, Caravaggio, and Raphael.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$223.60
Price varies by group size
From
$223.60
Price varies by group size

Private Caracalla Baths and Circus Maximus Tour for Kids and Families

Private Caracalla Baths and Circus Maximus Tour for Kids and Families

Step back in time, and discover more about how life was lived in ancient Rome, during this private, family-friendly tour of the Baths of Caracalla and the Circus Maximus. On your tour of the baths, among the largest thermal complexes built by the Romans, you’ll spy ancient pools, saunas, and more. Then, continue to the Circus Maximus, ancient Rome’s largest entertainment venue, which once hosted chariot races, gladiator fights, and more. As you go, your guide will share interactive games and activities designed to keep younger visitors entertained.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$259.09
Price varies by group size
From
$259.09
Price varies by group size

Footsteps of Saint Paul Private Tour

Footsteps of Saint Paul Private Tour

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Walk in the footsteps of St. Paul to discover his life! A citizen of Rome, Apostle Paul requested to be brought back upon being falsely accused at the Temple of Jerusalem. Step inside the Mamertine Prison, Apostles St. Peter and St. Paul were both imprisoned here and many of the prisoners were baptized and converted during their time inside. After being brought before Emperor Nero, St. Paul was acquitted of the charges. Visit The Church of St. Paul alla Regola, whose location is over the house where the Saint wrote some of his apostolic letters. Visit the Abbey of the Three Fountains. During his second time as a prisoner in Rome, Saint Paul was martyred, as his head bounced three times on the floor three outflows of water miraculously sprung. Their miraculous water used to be collected by people until pollution forced them to close the springs. End with the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, the tomb of the Saint is located in this magnificent basilica.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$401.75
Price varies by group size
From
$401.75
Price varies by group size