Rome on wheels with Roma Cristiana Bus ToursMay 16, 2014 10:30 am
Although Rome is a relatively compact city you can explore quite easily by foot; there’s nothing better than a good old bus tour. You can’t deny it, sitting on an open-top (especially when it’s sunny!) and taking in the sights like a proper tourist is actually good fun!
Obviously, the Roma Cristiana bus tour in Rome is a must-do on your trip. It’s an easy kill-all-the-birds-with-one-stone method of seeing all the important landmarks and monuments of the city, whilst learning interesting facts on the way. For example, did you know left handed people in Ancient Rome were considered unlucky? It’s where the word sinister comes from, from the Italian sinistra meaning left.
With a three day hop-on, hop-off ticket you’re guaranteed to see all the major sights of Rome as the bus stops at 12 major points around the city, from the Coliseum and St Peter’s Basilica, to the great squares of Piazza Navona and Campo de’Fiori. Whether you choose to stay seated on the bus and sit on it for the full 2 hour tour, or whether you jump off and on at various points to explore the city in depth, this bus tour is a great way of discovering Rome at your leisure.
Here are some of the best sights to see on the way:
As one of the most famous landmarks in Rome, the Coliseum is as deep-rooted in Rome’s history as you can get. Built in 70AD it has stood the test of time and is pretty much the world’s all time event arena! Hosting some of the most daring, controversial and undeniably entertaining events in history from gladiator fights to miniature boat races, the Coliseum is a must-see. Admire the imposing structure of the 156m wide amphitheatre and learn about its influential history. Hop off to explore the exhibitions and take a walk around the ancient architecture.
St Peter’s Basilica
As the most important landmark in the Catholic Church, St Peter’s Basilica symbolises the epicentre of their holy community. Its Renaissance and Baroque art history and decoration makes it a monumental masterpiece from its marble façade, to its interior opulence – featuring Bernini’s baldacchino and Bramante’s dome. Explore the underground crypts or climb up to the very top of the dome for sweeping views across the city. Don’t forget to cover up your arms and legs though, they’re quite strict when it comes to entry admission.
With a seating capacity of 250,000, Circus Maximus was the other main arena that staged popular events; the most popular were the chariot races. Circus Maximus is even older than the Coliseum and dates back to the 6th century BC, where a racing track was created between the two main peaks, the Aventine and the Palatine hills. After two fires destroyed the original construction, the arena was made in stone and marble, and stood at a height of 3 stories, measuring over 600m long! Unfortunately during the Medieval and Renaissance eras most of the material was stolen from the structure of the site for new builds, which is why so little of the architecture remains today.
One of Rome’s most famous Baroque examples, Piazza Navona, is in the heart of Rome and is a popular piazza for tourists and locals alike. Stop off at this marble masterpiece for a spot of lunch in one of the traditional Italian restaurants that spill onto outside tables on the cobbled square and overlook the fountains and statues that make Piazza Navona so beautiful. Why not go through Campo de’Fiori on your way back to the bus and walk through the famous artisanal food market. There’s everything from fresh produce to funny pasta shapes, as well as ingredients for the perfect picnic!
With the OMNIA Vatican & Rome Card you can explore Rome with the Roma Cristiana bus tour for free. The 3 day hop-on, hop-off ticket is included in the price of the package – just turn up and get your ticket from the stop at Piazza Pio XII, 9.