Beyond a doubt, the Colosseum in Rome has to be one of Italy’s most popular attractions. It stands in the middle of a metropolis, boasting its ancient pillars, hand-carved centuries ago. Mortar and stone are all that remain, serving as a testament to the grandeur of the Roman Civilization. For the rest, you have to use your imagination.
My travel guru companion and I were so elated to arrive in Rome; our first destination was The Colosseum. We had half a day to kill before we could check-in to our Air B&B, so the Colosseum fit perfectly into our day. After landing at the airport, we jumped off the plane and went straight to the train station across the street. I love how conveniently this city has set up their transportation, as the major train terminal servicing Rome is adjacent and connected to the international airport, located in Fiumicino.
Travel Tip #1
Go to the Tourism Center or Visitor’s Office located at the Fiumicino Airport & Train Terminal.
They have available different train & museum / monument passes that will save you a lot of money. We were only staying in Rome for two days, so we purchased a pass appropriate for our travel plans. The best option for us was the Two-Day Unlimited Train & Bus Pass, good for metropolitan Rome. It included a few perks as well, including a free entry into any monument of our choice and discounted entry to two other Roman monuments / museums. There are restrictions in regard to which monuments qualify, however, we intended to see several monuments that were included. Regardless, it is wise to inquire, as there are several options available that may suit your travel plans.
Travel Tip #2
Get a train, metro and bus schedule that includes a map of Metropolitan Rome.
Equipped with our public transportation schedule and metropolitan map in hand, we hopped on the next train headed for the Colosseum. The train ride into Rome from Fiumicino is about an hour. We had to make a few transitions at terminals, but after you become familiar with the Metro in Rome, you will be fine.
Once we arrived at the Colosseum, we were a bit disappointed to discover very long lines for entry. After asking around a bit, we noticed a short entry line and inquired who it was for. The staff told us it was for people who have a certain type of pass. Low and behold, we had this exact pass! It was the pass associated with the unlimited Two-Day Rome Metropolitan Train & Bus Pass that included discounts to Museum / Monument Entry. Major score! We were escorted right to the front of the line, plus we got in for free, using our one free entry pass to any monument in Rome. It was a great way to kick off our first Roman adventure.
Still toting our 25 lb. Osprey travel backpacks, we walked around every inch of the Colosseum. There are a few levels, and plenty of stairs. The higher you go, the better the perspective view of the monument. The sub-levels are quite restricted, but you can tour some of the areas below the main floor level. The original arena floor of the Colosseum has long deteriorated and is now mostly non-existent, so I assume these sub-levels were once catacomb-like tunnels.
We were a bit surprised to see new cement poured over roughly half of the “arena” level of the Colosseum. It was apparent they were changing the existing remains to give tourists a glimpse of what the arena floor once looked like. Perhaps there is an ulterior motive for this, but we weren’t sure how we felt about the face of this monument changing for the sake of visual replication.
As we climbed the steep stairs with our heavy backpacks to the upper levels, you couldn’t help but notice the dank smell of plaster, mortar and cement, centuries old. It takes you back into an age long past, into the culture of an ancient civilization. Overlooking the Colosseum, I could imagine the wealthy Romans of the time, arriving at this grand place of supreme entertainment. Women ordained with jewelry, wearing long flowing white linen dresses. Muscular men, strong and handsome, loosely wrapped in togas. All there to watch warriors battle and slaves fight to the death, as morbid as that seems. While our culture has advanced into the 21st century, has our morality really changed? Aside from the technology, have we really evolved culturally in comparison to ancient civilizations? It’s a place like this that makes you start to wonder.
Enjoy the Colosseum for all of its bump and glory. Who could tell the story of these monolithic dank walls? If only someone knew, perhaps it would unlock ancient secrets, the things unknown that have shaped our humanity. Maybe Aristotle knew best when he said…
At his best, man is the noblest of all animals; separated from law and justice, he is the worst.
Micah Lyn is a Holistic Healthcare Practitioner HHP, Intuitive Healer and E-RYT 500 Certified Yoga Teacher registered with Yoga Alliance and KRI. She offers a variety of private yoga classes in Sedona AZ, yoga therapy and intuitive healing services at Pachamama Yoga ✨ Sedona Healing Center. Visit the YTT Programs & Workshops page to see upcoming Online & Hands-on Intensive Yoga Teacher Training, Virtual Online Yoga Workshops & Transformational Yoga Retreats featured worldwide.
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