Roman Forum aerial view at dusk, crowds in Rome

Rome Tours and Experiences Hosted by Local Experts

Insider Tips

To make the most of your time in Rome, don’t try to see everything. Instead, look at the right things. Context experts can help you focus on what matters to you, crafting an experience you will never forget.

For archaeological sites like the Colosseum, the Forum, and Ostia Antica, we highly recommend you go with a guide who can show you the stories hidden in every stone and ruin. The Pantheon is a perfect place to visit on your own if you don't want to go too deep in its history, as it still stands intact.

No visit to Rome is complete without going to the Vatican, but it can be a very overwhelming experience on your own. Try our choose-your-own adventure audio guide to make the venue more approachable and tailored to how deep you want to go.

Museums offer a great opportunity to explore on your own while meandering through the curated galleries. However, if you ever feel lost or unable to connect the art to the bigger picture, an art historian guide can help you see the paintings and sculptures through the eyes of the artist and uncover the political or social meanings it held for the community at the time it was commissioned...

For a museum like the Borghese Gallery, with so many pieces of art and a 2-hour time limit inside, we recommend you have an audio guide or an expert helping you select a sample to focus on.

Monti, Pigneto, and Garbatella are some of the best neighborhoods to explore on your own are. In these you can experience the typical neighborhoods where you can feel the local atmosphere. Other neighborhoods have rich histories that a guide can bring to life, like the Jewish Ghetto and Trastevere; those are great places to go with a guide or listening to an audio guide.
We might make everything on an image in Canva with Expert's photos and quotes

Our best advice to make this trip your own while still hitting the highlights is to plan your non-negotiable must-sees in advance and leave some breathing time to spontaneously enjoy the city itself, look around you and bypass the crowds.

On your first day...

You might feel tired after a long international flight. Don’t rush into taking a tour right away: ask your concierge for a local restaurant recommendation. Recharge with a typical Roman pasta (Carbonara, Amatriciana, or Gricia) or Roman pizza. 

Take some time to discover your neighborhood. Go for a stroll and spot the best coffee place to sip a espresso at the counter like locals do, or find a gelateria to hit the ground running. To immerse yourself in Roman culture, you need time to truly take a step back and feel it. Your first day in the city is perfect for this.

Romans usually eat around 8 or 9 pm; this might feel late, especially after the long day you had. Fortunately, we have the right solution–ask your concierge for their advice to have an aperitivo. Earlier in the day, starting at 6 pm, you’ll pay for your drink and have access to an array of food (either one plate per person or free access to a buffet). That should fill you for the night and allow you to get into the Roman pace. 

Seize the opportunity to ignite your curiosity and immerse yourself in the life-changing experiences by exploring our pre-trip lectures if you find yourself unable to fall asleep upon returning to your accommodation.

For the rest of your stay... 

Book one tour a day and leave the rest open to have room for serendipitous exploration of Rome.
Soak in all the learnings our experts will reveal to you, either on a tour or through an audio guide, and take the rest of your day to explore the city or museums on your own. 

Remember to rest and keep yourself hydrated. Rome offers numerous fountains “nasoni” where you can refill your water bottles as you explore the city.
We selected our experts not just to guide you, but to welcome you as hosts

Their extensive expertise allows them to tailor your time together, whether you’re interested in ancient history, Renaissance art, gastronomy, or just having a good time with a local in the city. This ensures you leave Rome with a memorable experience.

Before you go, our experts' pre-trip talks give you the context you need to make the most of your time on the ground.

Our tours are structured, not scripted. We aim to be conversational to make sure you come out from this experience with learnings that resonate with you and satisfy your curiosity. Understanding your expectations before we meet is as important as our time together. Only with the first piece answered will we be able to accomplish the second half.

For budget-conscious travelers, solo travelers, and those who prefer to explore at their own pace, our audio guides offer the same expertise in a flexible listening experience.

Context tours are for travelers who love to learn. Since 2003, we have offered a wide range of Rome guided tours, including visits to museums, archaeological sites, and food tours—all led by local scholars and specialists. In addition to the main attractions like the Colosseum and the Vatican Museums, our Rome private guides can also show you the sites less traveled.

One of our most popular Rome private tours is our Ostia Antica tour, an excursion to the ancient port of Rome buried by centuries of mud, one of Italy's most compelling archaeological sites. Also popular is our Underground Rome Tour, in which we dig under the surface (literally and figuratively) with a trained Archaeologist or Speleologist to explore sewers, crypts, and buried temples—featured in National Geographic and on the History Channel.

Traveling to Rome with kids? Try our Ancient Rome for Kids Tour and our Vatican for Kids Tour, both of which use interactive activities, scavenger hunts, and games and feature private guides trained in inquiry-based learning to make Rome come alive.

Or are you more eager to take a day trip from Rome? Our team has taken care of planning all the logistics for a perfect Pompeii Full Day Tour from Rome.
What Context Rome Travelers Say
(4.74) 12,969 Reviews

Reviews can only be left by Context customers after they have completed a tour. For more information about our reviews, please see our FAQ.

The tour was excellent. Our guide led us through the entire experience. Dony was knowledgeable, enthusiastic and more than a little funny.
Amazing tour. Maria Stella made it so much fun for our teenagers!
Brenda was a wonderful Vatican guide. Very knowledgeable and related well to our 10 and 13 year old grandkids. And she did a great job maneuvering us through the wall to wall crowds.
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