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Rome Underground Secrets Tour

  • Group Size:
    Group Size: Max 7
  • Language:
    Language: English
  • Duration:
    Duration: 3.5 hrs
  • Start:
    Start: 2:00 AM
  • Price:
    Price: From 149 €
  • Cancelation:
    Including: Skip the line tickets

Tour Overview

From quirky ossuaries to creepy catacombs, this remarkable expedition into the underground uncovers a darker side of the Eternal City. Get the best of every minute as you travel from one peculiar sight to another in the company of a 5-star guide and a small group of 7 guests or fewer.

Tour Highlights

  • Capuchin Monk Bone Crypt
  • The Catacombs of San Callixtus
  • The Basilica of San Clemente

What's included

  • Skip-the-line access
  • Expert English-speaking guide
  • A small group of 7 or fewer
  • All tickets and reservations
  • A private luxury vehicle with a driver

What you’ll See Along the Way

Capuchin Monk Bone Crypt

The Capuchin Monks took possession of the Santa Maria della Concezione church in 1631, bringing 300 wagonloads of their deceased brothers’ bones with them. Through following centuries, the friars used the skeletal remains to carefully decorate a suite of chapels in the underground crypt of their new sanctuary. For modern-day visitors, the peculiar embellishments may seem morbid, but the Capuchins insisted that the displays were assembled to serve as a somber reminder of our own mortality. Whatever your take may be, a visit to the crypt provides a dizzying, slightly bizarre and completely unforgettable experience.

The Catacombs of San Callixtus

In 2nd Century AD, the Catacombs of San Callixtus were built on the site of a former Roman necropolis where it quickly gained importance amongst early Christians as a place of worship as well as a refuge from persecution. The sprawling underground complex consists of over 12 miles of tunnels, making it the largest catacomb system in Rome. When the subterranean burial site was still in use, some 500,000 people, including martyrs, bishops and even 16 popes were laid to rest there. Almost all of the bodies have since been removed, but the catacombs remain to be an important Christian pilgrimage site to this day.

The Basilica of San Clemente

The Basilica of San Clemente is one of Rome's oldest churches, offering a fascinating glimpse into the city's long and complex history. While it isn’t the only tri-layered “lasagna” church in the city, it is without a doubt the most interesting – a 13th century basilica erected on top of a church from the 300s, which in its turn, is built on top of a mysterious pagan temple from the 2nd century and a Roman apartment from the 1st century. It may sound confusing at first, but it will all make sense when you descend the ancient staircase into the underground, gradually unveiling the different levels of Rome’s multilayered past.

Tour Summary Get in the Know

Unearth a Hidden World Buried Beneath Rome

The Eternal City is more than meets the eye – go beyond (and below!) the main attractions on this thought-provoking journey into the underworld. Deep in the darkness, beneath the buzzing streets of modern-day Rome, your guide will shine a light into the past as you uncover the haunting secrets that most other visitors miss out on. We’ll take care of the tickets and arrange private transportation so that you can enjoy the inaccessible sights without worry – and completely hassle-free!

Rome underground tours offer a stellar option for anyone looking for an unusual experience off the beaten track. Once the Roman Empire fell, many of its great monuments were reduced to rubble, but what remained below ground has been preserved impeccably, almost untouched by time. With countless clues on how Rome became the world’s greatest empire hidden subterraneanly, you’ll gain a unique perspective on history as we descend well below street level and slowly peel back the layers of time.

Unveil “Shiver-Down-the-Spine” Inducing Sights

Our first stop is not for the faint of heart. From the outside, Santa Maria della Concezione may look like any other church in Rome, but its rosy pink façade belies the haunting contents of its underbelly – the Capuchin Monk Bone Crypt. Using the skeletal remains of their deceased brothers (4000 of them to be exact!), friars from the Capuchin order decorated every inch of these otherworldly chambers in the most bizarre patterns and formations – including a vertebrae chandelier and a clock made entirely out of finger and toe bones. Though seemingly macabre at first sight, you may change your perspective from “blasphemous” to “beautiful” when your guide reveals the deeper meaning behind these peculiar displays.

While the Capuchins were allowed to practice their faith in peace, their predecessors weren’t as lucky. For centuries, in fact, Christianity was illegal in the Roman Empire, and believers were forced to bury their dead outside the city walls. We’ll follow in their footsteps and delve into the chilling Catacombs of St. Callixtus – the final resting place of over 500,000 souls. Explore the twisting maze of underground tunnels, learn to decipher the ancient symbols depicted on the walls, and hear the compelling stories of how the early Christians performed their religious rituals in secrecy (and the horrific punishments that awaited them if exposed). Equal parts creepy and mesmerizing; this is one of those sights you have to see to believe!

Descend into History at Rome’s Deepest Church

We’ll end the tour with some good old-fashioned time-traveling at the Basilica of San Clemente. Thanks to one insomniac Irish priest, who insisted he could hear water running and decided to start digging, we can today explore all layers of this remarkable three-tiered “lasagna” church. We’ll take a few moments to admire the mosaics in the above-ground 12th-century Basilica before plunging into its subterranean levels – first the 4th-century church and then the second underground level, containing a 1st-century apartment complex (complete with a cave-like temple, used for the enigmatic rites of the Mithraic mystery cult!).

Out of respect for the holy places visited, and due to the touching nature of the tour, we always limit our group size to 8 people or fewer. The small group size ensures an intimate and private setting, where you can feel free to openly discuss thoughts and questions that come up along the way (trust us, there will be many!). With one of our experts leading the way, you will gain a tantalizing glimpse into a long-lost world and a heightened appreciation for all that Rome has to offer!

if you have any questions about the trips, see our FAQ. LEARN MORE

Rome Underground Secrets Tour

What our Customers say...

Amazing tour and guide!

It was amazing. Carl was our tour guide and he is interesting, knowledgeable and just a pleasure because you see he is passionate about the subject matter! Request him when you sign up and you won't be disappointed. Next trip I will try again to book a different tour a him. And bravo to this tour company for introducing me now to two outstanding guides. Very class a service and prices are reasonable.”

Highly recommend!

Incredibly informative tour of the Crypts and Catacombs with the lovely Carl - he really knows (and loves!) his stuff,we learnt so much and what a nice guy, thank you!”

Best Tour Company Ever!

Rachel - This woman was just amazing. I don't think there was anything she didn't know. Very informative & kept us interested all the way through the tour. A very small group so personal & entertaining. Go on this tour, you HAVE to ask for Rachel - she won't disappoint. Loved it Rach. You made our week. Thanks”

Loved it!

The small group format was great because we were able to move through the sites easily and ask as many questions as we wanted. The tour guide made us feel like family and was extremely knowledgeable! I was really impressed with this company and would recommend it to anyone.”

Amazing Crypts & Catacombs tour

Perfect tour to start our week! Our guide was incredible, an expatriate with a wealth of knowledge and love for history. Wish we had taken all their tours, they were simply amazing! They are worth every euro!”

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