The Colosseum, the ruins of the centre of the world

  • More than 2.000 years ago, Rome was the greatest city in the world, and the Roman Empire the greatest civilisation. Even now, Ancient Rome is one of the most important and influential civilisations that have conquered the world, and as a proof we have the Colosseum, the great ruins located at what once was the centre of power of the world. Also called the Amphiteatrum Flavium (Flavian Amphitheatre), because it was built by the Flavian dynasty, the Colosseum is the largest amphitheatre ever built. Made out of sand and concrete, its construction started in the year 72 AD, and was finished in the year 80 AD, under Titus’ rule. The Colosseum hosted all sort of then-called spectacles, such as gladiator contests, re-enactments of battles, animals hunts, executions and even mock-sea battles. In 2007, it was declared one of the New 7 Wonders of the world.
  • The Colosseum is in the centre of the city, so most of the neighbours you will have will be tourists like yourself. The locals tend to live in quieter areas of the city, although Rome is one of the liveliest, busiest and most chaotic (but in a good way!) capitals of Europe.
    However, what about going a bunch of centuries back and think about the ancient neighbours of the Colosseum, the ancient Romans? Think about the emperors who watched the gladiators fight, against each other or against animals, about the bloodthirsty multitudes cheering, about the slaves and the common people. From the apartments near the Colosseum, you will feel like travelling back in time.
  • The surroundings of the Colosseum are one of the best places to shop for souvenirs. There, you will be able to find books, key chains, pencils, postcards and also some theme-related gifts like helmets or costumes for the little ones in the family. You will also find books and DVDs that tell the history of the Roman Empire and the wonderful Colosseum.
    But if you’re staying near the Colosseum and want to do some regular shopping (after all, Italy is one of the fashion capitals of the world and you’ll want to take advantage of that), you will find one of the main shopping streets at a short walking distance: You just need to go to Piazza Venezia (where the National Monument to Victor Emmanuel II is), where you will find the beginning of Via del Corso, which ends in Piazza del Popolo. There, you will find many major brands like Zara, Nike or Mango, and if you’re travelling with kids, you can also pay a visit to the Disney Store. If you want to shop for exclusive Italian brands, you can go to the Galleria Alberto Sordi, also located in Via del Corso.
  • When you visit Rome, you will probably need to change the habit of using the underground system to move around, which was probably your preferred transportation option when visiting other European capitals. Due to the remains found underground and other bureaucratic issues, Rome has quite a limited metro system. Nonetheless, there is a metro stop right next to the Colosseum, called Colosseo (which is the name of this important monument in Italian), which will take you to the Circus Maximus or the train station Termini, the most important of the city.
    But from the apartments near the Colosseum, you will be at walking distance from many other tourist attractions in the city – you will be able to use your own feet to move around! There is so much to see in Rome that it might just be the best decision.
  • If you’re staying in the apartments near the Colosseum, the main thing to visit in the area will be, of course, the Colosseum – and it should indeed be the first in your list! Sometimes, we have seen important monuments so often that once we see them in person we feel like we’re seeing a postcard, but that’s not the case of the Colosseum: You will feel part of the postcard! The monument is really impressive, and your kids will love it as much as you will. Keep in mind that there is usually a big queue and that due to safety reasons, only 3.000 people can be inside at the same time. This is why we recommend that you book your tickets online.
    In front of the Colosseum, you will find the Roman Forum, a wonderful enclosure that shows the greatness of the ancient Roman Empire through the ruins. You will never forget it. At a walking distance, you will also find the Domus Aurea and the Circus Maximus.
  • The Colosseum is located in the most touristic area of the capital of Italy, not just because it is the most visited monument in the city, but because it is surrounded by other important tourist attractions, such as the Roman Forum. Even the least experienced travellers know that eating in the tourist areas is a tricky thing, no matter which city you are visiting, since the restaurants there seem to be overpriced or not the best quality. However, there are a few great places where you can have a nice meal around the Colosseum – in fact, Italian food is so good that it’s kind of hard to have a bad meal in Rome! You can buy a great sandwich in PANE & VINO, the perfect meal to keep your children happy and to gain your energy back. If you prefer to sit down and enjoy a proper meal, you can try the Osteria Angelino dal 1899. It isn’t cheap, but the dishes are pretty generous. And to put the cherry on top, what about an Italian ice cream in the Cremeria Don Pepe?
  • Probably, after being surrounded from all these ancient wonders, you will be in the mood for something closer to our times… Like a nice, fresh beer in a pub! Lucky for you, very close to the Colosseum you will find two great Irish pubs, the Finnegan Irish Pub and the Shamrock Irish Pub.
    If you want something different, next to the Colosseum you will find the Coming Out, a gay pub with a terrace from which you’ll be able to enjoy the views of the monument, and where you can also eat. A great place to have a quick dinner and a drink after visiting this marvel from Roman times – but try to go early, since it tends to be packed with people!


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