Catacombs of Rome (Catacombe di Roma)
Five of the catacombs are currently open to visitors, including St. Sebastian and St. Callixtus. A trip to the catacombs is often combined with a visit to the Roman countryside and the ancient Appian Way, either on foot or by bike. Choose a tour tailored for kids and families, one focused on ghosts and mystery, or a walking tour with skip-the-line access to beat the crowds.
For an exclusive after-hours experience, tour the crypt at night when it’s closed to the public and during which English-speaking guides explain past burial rituals and give historical context to the sights.
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Things to Know Before You Go
Due to the delicate nature of the surroundings, travelers cannot visit the catacombs independently; all visits must be part of a guided group or private tour.
Tours and group visits can be arranged upon arrival at the most popular catacombs, but visits must be booked in advance at the less-visited spots.
Catacomb tours are not recommended for travelers who get claustrophobic.
Catacombs are holy places, so all guests should cover their shoulders and thighs; it’s best to also have a light jacket, as it can get cold underground.
The Catacombs of Rome are not wheelchair or stroller accessible.
How to Get There
You’ll find the Roman Catacombs on Via Appia Antica, Via Ostiense, Via Labicana, Via Salaria, and other roads. They can be reached by public transport on various metro and bus lines. Many tours to the catacombs depart from Rome’s Piazza Barberini.
When to Get to There
Most of Rome’s crypts and catacombs are open year-round from 9am to 5pm with a short break for lunch; they're typically closed on Sundays. Limited access to the catacombs makes booking in advance a good idea, especially around Easter and between May and September, when Rome swarms with travelers. The cool catacombs make for a great break from Italy’s summer heat, but the quieter months are recommended for thinner crowds.
Rome’s Strangest Sight?
Perhaps the most interesting sight in the catacombs is the Capuchin Crypt, or Bone Chapel, an area containing—and decorated with—the bones of 4,000 Capuchin friars. Crypt rooms are themed by different types of bones, from skulls to pelvis and leg bones.
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