All You Need to Know to Plan Your Visit to The Roman Catacombs
The Roman catacombs have been a key sight of visit for all when traveling through Rome. Located beneath the streets of the ancient city, this intricate network of tunnels contains a vast number of tombs from different eras and religions. A visit to the tombs is a must when exploring the history of Rome because these tombs are a reflection of the several generations that have lived and called this ancient city home.
Roman Catacombs | Visitor Information At A Glance
- How many Roman catacombs are accessible?
The catacombs of Domitilla, San Callisto, Saint Sebastian, Priscilla, and Saint Agnes are open to visitors.
- What are the Roman catacomb's opening hours?
The opening times of the Catacombs vary but usual timings are 9 AM - 5 PM
- Where are the Roman catacombs located?
The Roman catacombs are primarily located along the Appian Way, a famous ancient Roman road, but there are also some catacombs situated on the outskirts of the city of Rome.
Where are Catacombs Located?
Catacombs of Callixtus
To reach the Catacombs of Callixtus, you can take the following directions:
- By Bus: Bus lines 118 and 660 both pass through the Catacombs of Callixtus
- By Train: Take the train lines FL1, FL3, and FL5 to reach the Catacombs of Callixtus.
- By Metro: Metro lines A, B, and C will take you to the Catacombs of Callixtus
- By Taxi: Head southeast from the city center towards the Appian Way. The catacombs are located approximately 2.5 kilometers (1.5 miles) along the Appian Way from the Porta San Sebastiano. Look for the entrance on the left-hand side of the road.
Nearby landmark: Porta San Sebastiano or San Sebastiano Gate is a recognizable landmark near the entrance to the catacombs.
Catacombs of Domitilla
To reach the Catacombs of Domitilla, you can follow these directions:
- By Bus: Bus routes 30, 671, 714, and 716 pass through the Catacombs of Domitilla
- By Train: Train lines FL1, FL3, and R will take you to the Catacombs of Domitilla
- By Metro: Take Line B to reach the Catacombs of Domitilla
- By Taxi: From the city center, head southeast towards the Appian Way (Via Appia Antica). Continue along the Appian Way until you reach the intersection with Via delle Sette Chiese. Turn left onto Via delle Sette Chiese. The catacombs are located along this road.
Nearby landmark: There is no specific landmark directly near the catacombs, but the nearby intersection with Via delle Sette Chiese can serve as a reference point.
Catacombs of Priscilla
To reach the Catacombs of Priscilla, you can follow these directions:
- By Bus: Bus routes 310, 63, 89, 83, and 92 pass through the Catacombs of Priscilla
- By Train: Train lines FL1, FL3, and FL5 will take you to the Catacombs of Priscilla
- By Metro: Take Line B to reach the Catacombs of Priscilla
- By Taxi: Head north from the city center towards Via Salaria. Continue along Via Salaria until you reach the catacombs. The catacombs are located at number 430 on Via Salaria.
Nearby landmark: Villa Ada, a large public park, is located nearby and can serve as a recognizable landmark close to the catacombs.
Catacombs of San Sebastian
To reach the Catacombs of San Sebastian, you can follow these directions:
- By Bus: Bus route 118 passes through the Catacombs of San Sebastian
- By Train: Train lines FL1, FL3, FL5, and R will take you to the Catacombs of San Sebastian
- By Metro: Take Line A to reach the Catacombs of San Sebastian
- By Taxi: Head southeast from the city center towards the Appian Way (Via Appia Antica). The catacombs are located approximately 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles) along the Appian Way from the Porta San Sebastiano. Look for the entrance on the left-hand side of the road, near the Basilica of San Sebastiano.
Nearby landmark: Basilica of San Sebastiano is a significant landmark adjacent to the catacombs.
Catacombs of Sant'Agnese
To reach the Catacombs of Sant'Agnese, you can follow these directions:
- By Bus: Bus routes 310, 544, 60, 66, 80,82, and 89 pass through the Catacombs of Sant'Agnese
- By Train: Train lines FL1 and FL3 will take you to the Catacombs of Sant'Agnese
- By Metro: Take Line B to reach the Catacombs of Catacombs of Sant'Agnese
- By Taxi: Head northeast from the city center towards Via Nomentana. Continue along Via Nomentana until you reach the catacombs. The catacombs are located at number 349 on Via Nomentana.
Nearby landmark: There is no specific landmark directly near the catacombs, but the catacombs themselves, marked by the entrance, can serve as a reference point.
Know Before You Visit The Catacombs
- Callixtus Entrance: Located on the Appian Way, the entrance has a huge gate that is easy to locate and is a convenient access point to the Catacomb
- Domitilla Entrance: Take the winding marble staircase in the convent of the Benedictine Sisters of Priscilla to explore the Domitilla Catacombs.
- San Sebastiano Entrance: This entrance is located near the Basilica of San Sebastiano which takes you down to the underground intricate catacomb network and beautiful frescoes.
- Priscilla Entrance: The entrance to the catacomb is on the Via Salaria through the cloister of the monastery of the Benedictines of Priscilla.
- Sant'Agnese Entrance: The entrance to the catacomb is via the Sant'Agnese church built on top of the catacomb.
- Avoid wearing shorts, skirts, or dresses that expose your knees.
- Men should preferably wear shirts or T-shirts without offensive slogans or imagery.
- Sleeveless t-shirts or vests are not allowed.
- Women should avoid wearing sleeveless, low-cut clothing, or crop tops.
- Tops should cover the shoulders and midriff.
- It is recommended to maintain a quiet and respectful attitude when exploring the catacombs.
- Avoid displaying tattoos with offensive or inappropriate imagery.
- It is important to note that photography is prohibited in certain areas of the catacombs.
- Stay on the designated paths and follow the guidance provided by the staff.
- Do not touch or remove any artifacts or remains within the catacombs.
- Food and beverages are prohibited within the catacombs.
- Please refrain from loud conversations, music, or disruptive behavior.
- Bring comfortable walking shoes as you’ll be walking a lot.
- Go to the washroom beforehand because there aren’t any washroom facilities
- Carry a small backpack for essentials.
- Carry a water bottle during your visit as you have to walk around quite a bit.
- Get a shawl, it might be chilly because it is underground.
- Purchase tickets online in advance to skip the lines and ensure entry
- Do not touch or remove any artifacts or decorations.
- Consider booking a guided tour for a more immersive and informative experience.
Accessibility - The accessibility of the catacombs may be challenging for individuals with mobility issues or disabilities, as there are no provisions for seating or an elevator to assist with movement between levels.
Toilets - The catacombs are burial sites and are not equipped with modern amenities such as washrooms. There may be facilities around the area or near the entrance to the catacombs. Visitors are typically advised to use restrooms before entering the catacombs or to find facilities in nearby areas.
Audio Guide - Audio guides are available for some catacombs. It is recommended to book tickets for audio guide tours online.
- L'Archeologia: A stone's throw away from the Catacombs of Saint Sebastian in Rome, this place offers elegant Roman cuisine within a repurposed 19th-century tomb.
- Pizzeria I Quintili Eur Montagnola: Located conveniently close to the Catacombs of Saint Calisto this place is one of the best Pizzaria in town.
- Gelateria Baja Beach: Stop for ice cream to satisfy your sweet cravings while exploring the Catacombs of Saint Domitilla. Here you can choose between a lot of flavors of artisanal ice cream.
- Locanda Filomarino: If you are visiting the Catacombs of Priscilla, you have to stop by this authentic Italian restaurant where the food is a treat both for the eyes as well as the lips.
- Armando al Pantheon: This restaurant is situated near the Catacombs of Saint Agnes and has been a long-standing legend amongst the locals.
- Capuchin Crypt: This unique underground burial site features intricately decorated chapels made entirely of human bones, offering a macabre yet fascinating experience. The Capuchin Crypt is a must visit site when exploring the Catacombs.
- Villa di Massenzio: Discover the ruins of Villa di Massenzio, a vast ancient Roman villa complex.
- Circus Maximus: The Circus Maximus is an ancient Roman chariot racing stadium, once capable of holding over 150,000 spectators, it is a must-visit for history enthusiasts.
- Baths of Caracalla: The Baths of Caracalla in Rome are the largest and most well-preserved thermal baths from ancient Rome.
- Museo delle Mura: Located on the Appian Way, this museum showcases the history and construction techniques of the Aurelian Walls.
Frequently Asked Questions: Visiting Catacombs in Rome
Only 5 amongst the vast network of catacombs are open to public access.
Most of the Catacombs can only be entered with a guide. The guide is included with your entry ticket.
The average visit to each of the Catacombs takes approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Yes, group visits are allowed at the Catacombs. It is recommended to make prior arrangements for group visits.
No, pets are not allowed inside the underground crypts.
The most famous Catacombs are located near Via Appia Antica but some are also located a little far away from the city center.
The best way to reach the Catacombs is by using public transportation. You can take the bus, the metro, or even a cab from the main city center.
There is no specific dress code however, it is recommended to wear modest clothing and comfortable footwear as you will be walking through underground tunnels.
No, the Catacombs have steep stairs, narrow pathways, and limited space. It has no elevators or accessible features inside the tombs.
No. Photography is generally prohibited. It is important to respect the privacy and solemnity of the site.
No, visitors are not allowed to bring their luggage inside the Catacombs. It is advised to store your luggage at your accommodation or make use of nearby luggage storage facilities.
No, strollers or wheelchairs are not available for use at the Catacombs.
Yes, you can explore the main sections of the Catacombs in one visit. However, due to the vastness and historical significance of the site, it may not be possible to see every detail. It is recommended to plan your visit accordingly and prioritize the areas of interest.