The Archaeological Park of Roman Forum and Palatine is part of the visit to the Colosseum. For Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine you need one hour each. So plan on a total of three hours.
You can visit the archaeological park before or after the reserved time for the Colosseum. In total, the standard ticket is valid for 24h, the Full Experience Ticket for 2 days. Both tickets include admission to the Colosseum and one admission to the archaeological park.
With the standard ticket you can visit Roman Forum, Palatine and Colosseum. With the Full Experience Ticket you have additional access to the Colosseum Arena, the Imperial Forums as well as the museum and some archaeological sites in the park.
The visit to Emperor Nero’s Domus Aurea is not included with the above tickets.
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The Roman Forum is the oldest forum and belongs to the National Museum of the Colosseum.
Later Caesar and his successor emperors built further forums. These imperial forums are part of the museums of the Municipality of Rome. The visit to the Imperial Forums is included in the Full Experience Ticket.
The Palatine Hill
The Palatine is one of the seven hills of Rome and was probably settled 3,000 years ago. Later dignitaries and wealthy citizens lived here and the emperors built their palaces here. There are several interesting viewpoints on the Palatine Hill.
You can find more details in our article Ancient Rome.
There are three entrances to the archaeological park consisting of the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. There is also the entrance to the Imperial Forums.
Depending on whether you visit the park before or after the Colosseum and what you want to see, you can choose different entrances. The entrances are:
- Via Sacra: Entrance at the Arch of Titus between the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. This entrance is closest to the Colosseum
- Via di San Gregorio: entrance to the Palatine Hill
- The entrance at Via della Salara Vecchia on the Roman Forum is actually only used as exit
The Full Experience Ticket is also valid for the Imperial Forums and you can use the entrance at Piazza della Madonna di Loreto just at the beginning of Via dei Fori Imperiali and go through to the Roman Forum from there.
What you can see in 3 hours
It is generally worth visiting the park in before the Colosseum. You can stay in the park until you have to show up at the Colosseum 15 minutes before the booked time.
To visit the Roman Forum, take the entrance on Via Salara Vecchia. Unfortunately, sometimes there are quite a few queues at this entrance. In the Roman Forum you can stroll between the various ruins or you can head straight to Via Sacra, which from the left of the entrance leads up to the Arch of Titus. Then you only need around thirty minutes to the exit at the Arch of Titus. There you should be 20 minutes before your booked time for the Colosseum.
But you can also continue to climb to the Palatine Hill. The Palatine Hill is very large and it’s easy to get lost there. If you want to see the different viewpoints and take photos, it will take more than an hour.
On the satellite photo we have marked some viewpoints in red.
Seven unique places
With the Full Experience ticket you can visit some archaeological sites of the park and the museum on the Palatine.
The archaeological sites are part of the SUPER Ticket Seven Unique Places to Experience in Rome, currently offered only as Full Experience. Only a limited number of visitors are allowed to visit the different sites at the same time.
For Rome lovers and cultural experts, a visit to these sites is mandatory.
The opening times are:
House of Augustus 40 minutes max. 23 visitors
House of Livia 30 minutes max. 23 visitors
Santa Maria Antiqua with Oratory of the 40 Martyrs and Ramp of Domitian 30 minutes max. 60 visitors
Temple of Romulus 15 minutes max. 30 visitors
Palatine Museum ~ 1h
Emperor Nero’s Domus Transitoria
Criptoportico Neroniano 12 minutes max. 35 visitors
Aula Isiaca + Loggia Mattei 15 minutes max. 15 visitors
Roman Forum and Palatine have the same opening hours as the Colosseum:
From the beginning of winter time – end of February:
9 am – 4:30 pm
March – end of winter time
9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
From the beginning of summer time – August 31,
9 a.m. – 7:15 p.m.
9 am – 7:00 pm
October 1st – end of summer time
9 am – 6:30 pm
The SUPER sites open at 9:30 a.m. and close:
House of Augustus: 90 minutes before the park closes, closed Monday.
Curia Iulia: 75 minutes before closing of the park, closed Tuesday – Friday
Santa Maria Antiqua and Temple of Romolus: 75 minutes before closing of the park
How to get to the archaeological park
To get to the Colosseum, take the Colosseo metro line B station. Tram line 3 also stops at the Colosseum. It goes in the direction of “Valle Giulia” to San Giovanni and on to the zoo, in the other direction to the pyramid, Testaccio and Trastevere. From St. Peter’s Basilica, take bus 40 or bus 64 to Aracoeli / Piazza Venezia.
The entrance to the Roman Forum is on Via dei Fori Imperiali in the middle between the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia opposite the intersection with Via Cavour. The entrance to the Palatine Hill is on Via di San Gregorio in the middle between the Colosseum and the Circus Maximus.
Eating around the Colosseum
There are few gastronomic highlights around the Colosseum. The top restaurant Aroma with a view of the Colosseum is located in Via Labicana on the top floor of the Hotel Palazzo Manfredi , In Via di San Giovanni in Laterano you can eat very well at Isidoro and there are also some quite nice restaurants in the side streets. You will find a larger selection if you walk down Via dei Fori Imperiali and then turn right into Via Cavour. Angelino ai Fori is just on the corner. You will certainly find what you are looking for there and in the Monti Quarter beyond. You can also go down Via dei Fori Imperiali to Piazza Venezia and then left to Torre Argentina and left again to the ghetto. There you will find mainly Roman cuisine.
After you have rested a little, you can think about how to proceed. The obvious thing to do is to visit the Caelius Hill with the beautiful churches that are located there. Or you can go up the Oppius Hill to the Basilica of San Pietro in Vincoli and continue towards Monti. Or maybe you’d like to go to the city center to see the Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps, and to do some shopping.
If you want to see more ruins, you can also go to the Baths of Caracalla. With the bus 118 or with a hop on hop off line you can get to the catacombs on the Via Appia Antica.
You can take buses 40 or 64 from Piazza Venezia to the Vatican.
Via San Giovanni in Laterano
Via di San Giovanni in Laterano starts from the Colosseum. Past the excavations of a gladiator school and the Basilica of the Dominican San Clemente, this small, cozy street with nice bars, restaurants and shops leads to the Basilica of San Giovanni and the Holy Stairs and on to Via Appia Nuova.
On the north side of the Colosseum rises the Oppius Hill, in which Emperor Nero’s Domus Aurea is buried. The golden palace can only be visited on weekends because excavations are carried out during the week.
There are picturesque streets on the Oppius. The Basilica of San Pietro in Vincoli is a well-known attraction.
If you continue along Viale Monte Oppio, you will come to the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore.