Catacombs Private Tour in Rome

Discover the mysterious Roman Catacombs, Capuchin Crypts, and Appian Way on an intimate private tour

Travel Flexibly 5 / 5 See All 22 Reviews · 3.00h · Rome, Italy

Want to experience Rome’s secret underground world with your own expert guide? The Roman Catacombs aren’t on every traveler’s must see-list, but we think they should be! Join your passionate guide to see a different side of Rome’s history, with the comfort and convenience of private transportation from central Rome. Visit the incredible “bone church” at the Capuchin Crypts, head underground to see the eerie crypts and tombs at Catacombs of St. Callixtus, and stroll along the historic Appian Way!

  • Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini
  • Capuchin Crypts
  • Ancient Frescoes
  • Catacombs of St. Callixtus
  • Ancient Appian Way
  • Luxury private transportation
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off

Amazingly, roughly 95% of travelers to Rome miss out on the fascinating Roman Catacombs. Maybe they don't hear about them, or maybe their location outside of central Rome puts people off. Either way, they're missing out! This private Catacombs tour is the best and easiest way to visit the mysterious Roman Catacombs, with door-to-door transportation and your own private tour guide to walk you through the incredible history of this famous site.

After a visit to the strangely beautiful bone displays at the Capuchin Crypts, you’ll descend beneath the Eternal City’s well-traveled streets to the Catacombs of St. Callixtus—a large burial site which includes the resting places of many martyrs and pontiffs. To top things off see the historic Aurelian Walls and stroll along the Ancient Appian Way!

Private Rome Catacombs Tour Description

Your 3-hour underground tour features: 

  • Pick-up and drop-off at your accommodation in central Rome

  • Private, climate-controlled transportation (about 25 minutes to St. Callixtus)

  • A private guided tour of the Capuchin Crypts

  • A private guided tour of the Catacombs of St. Callixtus

  • Visit to the ancient Appian Way

  • A passionate, English-speaking guide

Since sites on this tour are religious, knees and shoulders must be covered for both men and women. We know that Rome is hot in summer - a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you. That way, you can cover your knees and shoulders when needed.

Door-to-Door Private Transportation

To make this private tour in Rome even better, we pick you up and drop you off! Using a climate-controlled vehicle, these private transfer services are included for accommodations located in Rome’s city center.

Please reach out to our Travel Experts after booking to let them know where you are staying.

Capuchin Crypts

The first stop on your private tour is the amazing Capuchin Crypts, which are bound to be like nothing you've ever seen before. This medieval crypt contains the skeletal remains of some 3,700 human bodies, believed to be Capuchin friars buried by their order. They were buried between the years 1500 and 1870, during which time the Roman Catholic Church permitted burial in and under churches.

The underground crypt is divided into six chapels: Crypt of the Resurrection, Crypt of the Skulls, Crypt of the Pelvises, Crypt of the Leg Bones and Thigh Bones, and Crypt of the Three Skeletons. Lit only by dim natural light seeping in through cracks and small fluorescent lamps, the crypt walls are elaborately decorated with skeletal remains.

Some of the skeletons are still intact and draped in Franciscan habits, while individual bones from other skeletons form elaborate ornamental designs. The Catholic Order insists that the display is meant to be a silent reminder of our own mortality and the fleeting passage of life on Earth.

The Catacombs of St. Callixtus

Along the Appian Way is where the first cemeteries of Rome were built. It’s here that you’ll stop to see the above-ground cemeteries of the Catacombs of St. Callixtus. Then your private guide will lead you underground to see the extensive network of burial sites at one of the most popular catacombs in Rome.

Over time, these catacombs became the coveted burial place as prominent martyrs and pontiffs were laid to rest here. Your guide will lead you to the crypts filled with popes from the third century as well as an area with impeccably preserved paintings.

The Catacombs of St. Callixtus are typically closed on Wednesdays and sometimes close on other days too. Not to worry though, your guide will take you to another incredible catacombs site if your tour lands on one of these days.

The Appian Way and Aurelian Walls

Emperor Aurelian built a defensive wall around Rome during the third century to defend the city against invading barbarians. You’ll pass the Aurelian Walls in your climate-controlled vehicle and see them up close. In addition, you can walk a small stretch of the ancient Appian Way. Leading all the way to Puglia in Southern Italy, the Appian Way is one of the most important ancient Roman roads.

This road was also the location of the crucifixion of 10,000 slaves during the revolt of Spartacus. Thankfully, you won't see any crucifixions today, but your guide will retell the story for you and make it come alive.

 

 

What you get with this tour
Pick-up and drop-off at your accommodation in central Rome
Private, climate-controlled transportation (about 25 minutes to St. Callixtus)
A private guided tour of the Capuchin Crypts
A private guided tour of the Catacombs of St. Callixtus
Visit to the ancient Appian Way
A passionate, English-speaking private guide
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See what people are saying

22 total reviews

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5.0/5 (based on 22 reviews)
5 stars
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3 stars
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1 stars
Amazing
12 July 2024
J
Reviewed by
Jeffrey Piraino

Our guide was so knowledgeable and detailed. Felt like a personlalized history lesson and we enjoyed it very much! .

Who knew?
16 June 2024
K
Reviewed by
Kim Hirschman

Fascinating tour, definitely one for those who have been to Rome before and are interested in history at the next level. Great guide, well organised

Great tour - thank you!
12 March 2024
K
Reviewed by
Katy Tynan

This was a great experience! Federica was super knowledgeable and enthusiastic. The catacombs and the ossuary were both fascinating. We learned a lot, had fun, and were able to see these sites easily in one afternoon.

show more reviews

Frequently Asked Questions

What to bring?

In addition to wearing or bringing clothing that covers your knees and shoulders, it's recommended to wear comfortable shoes. You're also welcome to bring a water bottle. Remember you're heading underground and it'll be cooler, so you may want to bring and extra light layer for yourself or your kids.

I don't see any availability on my date. Help!

This tour requires extra time to coordinate for private groups, so it must be booked a minimum of 2 weeks in advance. If you are looking for last-minute availability, feel free to contact us by email (info@thetourguy.com) or call us toll-free and we will do our best to accommodate you.

What if I have concerns about my mobility on this tour?

If you have any doubts about your mobility, then this private tour is your best option as it can be more easily tailored to your needs. Please get in touch so we can make sure the activities and and arrangements are suitable for you.

What catacomb does this tour visit?

Usually the Catacombs of St. Callixtus, although if there is any closure we will substitute with another catacomb site nearby. Please note that the Catacombs of St. Callixtus are typically closed on Wednesdays.

Will we see bones?

Yes! This tour visits the Church of Santa Maria della Concezione which houses a 17th-century ossuary under it. There you will see the bones of almost 4,000 Capuchin friars!

Why does my kid 6 or under have to pay?

We understand it must be frustrating to book a ticket for a young child. However, they must have their own seat in the car due to traffic regulations, so they take up space just like an adult. Please let us know ahead of time if a car seat is required so we can be prepared to accommodate you.

Is there a dress code to enter the religious sites on this tour?

We ask both men and women to cover knees and shoulders, otherwise you may be refused entry to religious sites and miss out on a portion of your tour. We understand the summers in Rome can be hot, so a great alternative is to bring a shawl/scarf/sweater with you. That way, you can cover your knees and shoulders when necessary.

What to bring?

In addition to wearing or bringing clothing that covers your knees and shoulders, it's recommended to wear comfortable shoes. You're also welcome to bring a water bottle. Remember you're heading underground and it'll be cooler, so you may want to bring and extra light layer for yourself or your kids.

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