During my recent trip to Rome, I had the absolute pleasure to do two amazing tours with The Tour Guy. The Tour Guy is a tour company comprised of passionate local experts around Europe. The company started as The Roman Guy, so their expertise is Italy! I couldn’t imagine a better tour company to have toured around Rome’s famous sites with. Take the journey with me on my Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Vatican Tours with The Tour Guy!
Early Morning Vatican Tour
The first tour with The Tour Guy was an exclusive early morning tour of the Vatican. If you don’t know, the line to get into the Vatican can get LONG. I’m talking wrapping around the building a few times over long. Not only does The Tour Guy offer skip-the-line tours, they offer early morning access tours. This means you get to see the Vatican as uncrowded as humanly possible 90-minutes before it opens to the public. Just to curb your expectations a little bit, you won’t be the only one there. BUT, you will have a significantly more enriched experience getting there early before the place gets so packed.
Our guide Laura was so sweet and knowledgeable. As we were gathering to get inside the Vatican and go through security, she pulled out a notebook to explain us details about the Sistine Chapel. Now, you may be wondering why she’s explaining different pieces that make up the Sistine Chapel outside of the Sistine Chapel. You’re not supposed to talk or take photos inside the Sistine Chapel. By explaining it to us on the notebook in detail before we got in, we were able to know the meaning behind the different aspects of Michelangelo’s ceiling painting when we saw it in person.
We got to visit a lot of different places inside the Vatican, like the Candelabra Gallery, the Gallery of the Tapestries, and the Gallery of Maps. Everything lead up to the eventual visits to the Vatican highlights: the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica. I’ll let the photos do the talking for how absolutely breathtaking these sites are. Click here to check out this tour for yourself!
Colosseum Arena Floor & the Roman Forum Tour
Later that afternoon, we took a tour of the Colosseum Arena Floor and the Roman Forum. The Colosseum is such a staple site in Rome that I knew I had to do it as a tour. There’s so much history that I don’t know about the Colosseum that I knew it would be of so much value to get a tour. I was absolutely right!
First, we walked from our tour meeting point to the entrance of the Roman Forum. We had skip-the-line access that the tour guide completely took care of which is so valuable and convenient. Our guide explained the immense history of the Roman Forum. To be honest, I knew nothing about what the Roman Forum was before the tour. I’d heard of it as a site and knew it was important, but just had no clue. Our guide passionately told the history of this area being the “Ancient City,” the downtown hub of the once powerful city of Rome.
After our walk around the Roman Forum, we made our way over to the Colosseum. We had to wait a few minutes for our timed entrance to the Colosseum. When you have skip-the-line tickets here, you’re required to enter at a specific time. We showed up about 5-10 minutes early and the guards were really strict about not letting us in until our exact time which was no problem.
We then went through security and entered the Colosseum through the Gate of Death, which was a surreal experience. Our guide explained all about the Colosseum and about how ancient Romans got tickets, how it was run, etc. There was so much I didn’t know about the Colosseum before this tour, so I’m so happy I went with a guide who helped enrich the experience.
The Tour Guy
Overall, my two experiences with The Tour Guy were incredible and made my experiences with the Vatican tour, Roman Forum, and Colosseum so much better than they would have been had I just gone alone. Meeting up with the guides for both tours was made super easy by their super easy instructions on the tour vouchers. The guides were friendly, knowledgeable, and passionate. I would never hesitate to do another tour with them. They do tours all over Italy, but also do Paris and Barcelona. You can check out their information here to book a tour of your own. Feel free to comment below if you have any questions at all and I’ll be happy to help out!
If you liked this post, check out my other blog posts from Italy!