Colosseum/Forum tours

Apr 30th, 2008, 12:05 PM
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Colosseum/Forum tours

I am trying to decide if I should book a tour online for the Colosseum or just go and use the audioguide. Do they have group tours that you can join on site? I am going to purchase the Roma Pass and use that for my ticket to avoid the lines. I would like to take a tour to get more out of the experience, but the ones I've checked are so expensive(there are 4 of us). Any suggestions? Thanks.
nwbniteowl is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 12:53 PM
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We booked a tour of the Forum and the Colloseum through Icon Tours. I am not a person who normally enjoys tours (quite the opposite). This tour was WONDERFUL and worth every penny. The guide was a graduate student from the US, and she was incredibly informative and enjoyable. It was one of our favorite parts of the trip. Our group included about 10 or so people.
txgrl99 is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 01:09 PM
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Yes there are very frequent tours you can book at the ticket window (and unofficial tour guides who tout their tours out front)

I did one with an 'unofficial' guide and it was a local 20s student type who gave the usual commentaries as well as such tidbits as there were no toilets in the Colosseum for women, who went up to the top of the structure and just hung over the railing when nature called!
PalenQ is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 01:13 PM
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You can pick up a tour at the Colosseum if you don't want to book ahead. One of the benefits of a tour (other than the obvious) is that you bypass the long lines waiting to buy tickets.

I wouldn't say that the on-site tours were as good as the Icon tour the above poster talks about and there were a lot of people in my tour as they do not limit the numbers.
adrienne is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 01:24 PM
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I was just researching this topic myself and got these two recommendations from this forum.

Happy planning!
travelfan1 is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 01:29 PM
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For me a guided tour of the forum is essential. I usually prefer self-guided but I found it too difficult to identify and visualize the prior state of the ruins with just a book or audio guide. Well worth the money. We picked up a tour outside the colliseum.
cjamigo is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 01:39 PM
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we used Context tours and had an amazing experience. I cannot imagine that it would be the same without a guide.
MomDDTravel is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 02:03 PM
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I agree that you need a good guide to bring that area to life.

With 4 of you why not use a private guide? My sister and I used Sonia Tavoletto for 3 days, one at the Forum/Colosseum. She was marvelous -- very knowledgeable and so charming. She was especially good about detecting our interests and tailoring the "lessons" to those.

I think she was about 35 eu per hour. If you do 3 hours, that works out to around 25 euros per person.
JeanneB is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 02:09 PM
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PS: we included the nearby Basilica of San Clemente in our Forum day. Absolutely fascinating! In fact, we spent so much time there we had to cut the colosseum short (which didn't bother me).
JeanneB is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 02:46 PM
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Thanks for your input everyone. I thought we'd do better with a tour. I will look into those names you all mentioned.

JeanneB--Where did you find Sonia Tavoletto? That sounds like a reasonable price. The tours I've seen are all much more than that.
nwbniteowl is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 03:11 PM
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I agree that a good tour is definitely worth the price, but I did really enjoy using the audioguides at both the Forum and in Pompeii on my last trip (2005).

I had been to the Forum years earlier, so really just wanted to wander through at my pace and focus on what I wanted to know more about. The audioguide was perfect for that.

I had never been to Pompeii; there were three of us and none of us wanted a guided tour. Again, the audioguides, along with some good maps, were the right choice for us.
annabelle2 is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 03:17 PM
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I have Sonia's information at home. I'll be there in a little while and will post it then.

When are you going?
JeanneB is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 04:43 PM
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I spelled it wrong:
It's Sonia Tavoletta
[email protected]

I also mis-quoted the price. It's 50eu per hour.
I hope it can still work your group. I had never been able to work up much interest in the antiquities area. But she made it so, so interesting!
JeanneB is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 05:12 PM
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Does anyone have any knowledge of the guide service "As The Romans Do"?
jeanie0107 is offline  
May 1st, 2008, 08:59 PM
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Thanks. I'll look into it. We are going to Italy on May 14--1st 4 days in Rome. Can't wait, but lots to do!
nwbniteowl is offline  

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