Colosseum: tickets, opening hours, and free admission!

Last Updated on February 22, 2024 by

WHERE IS THE COLOSSEUM?

The first sight one wants to see when arriving in Rome is, of course, the Colosseum. Built around 80 AD, it was a real architectural achievement for its time.

Visitors in Rome can easily reach it as the blue line of Metro B has a stop right outside, and yes, the stop is called Colosseo!

Rome metro Colosseum

COLOSSEUM TICKETS

***It is recommended to purchase Colosseum tickets online several days in advance from here ***

Remember that the Colosseum ticket is combined with the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. I In other words, a single ticket grants you access to all these historical sites. As of 2024, ticket prices are as follows:

  • €16.00: full ticket, valid for 24 hours
  • €22.00: full ticket + access to the underground + arena access, valid for 48 hours
  • €2.00: reduced ticket for EU residents aged 18 to 25

You can buy Colosseum tickets online from here with a debit card or PayPal. The slight increase in price is due to the benefits it offers, such as the

✓ Priority access, ensuring you won’t have to wait in line

✓ Ability to select your preferred time slot

Buying your Colosseum tickets ahead of time is a wise decision for a few straightforward reasons. To begin with, you can avoid the long queues. Additionally, you get the freedom to select a suitable time for your visit, tailored to your schedule. Utilize this calendar for a quicker booking process.

 

FREE ADMISSION TO THE COLOSSEUM

Colosseum opening hours

As part of promoting cultural heritage and encouraging Italians to visit their country’s museums and archaeological sites, the Italian government has adopted a law that specifies that the first Sunday of each month is free of charge for all state museums and archaeological sites.

Also, free admission is granted every day to children under 18 years old and:

  • Journalists with a valid press ID
  • EU tourist guides and interpreters
  • Holders of an ICOM (International Council of Museums) card
  • School groups with a teacher for every 10 students
  • Teachers and students studying archaeology, conservation of cultural heritage, education, fine arts, literature with a specialization in archaeology or art history, humanities, and those pursuing a Ph.D. in these subjects
  • Erasmus students of the above-mentioned disciplines
  • Blind and visually impaired visitors and their accompanying persons
  • Members of volunteer organizations related to cultural heritage

 

Colosseum information

So, if you find yourself in Rome on the first Sunday of the month, remember that the entry to the Colosseum is free!

Additionally, on the following dates, admission is also free:

  • May 9, for International Day of Memory and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism.
  • June 5, for World Environment Day.
  • June 29, for the Feast of Saint Peter and Saint Paul.
  • September 23, the birthday of Emperor Augustus.
  • October 4, for Peace Day.
  • November 4, celebrating the unification of the Italian state.
  • November 22, for World Philosophy Day.
  • December 18, for International Migrants’ Day.

For more free attractions in Rome, read my article “10 Free Attractions in Rome.”

💎 My Pretty Travels Tip: The Italian mafia exists in various forms and often goes and takes the free tickets on the first Sunday of the month, then sells them to people waiting outside for €5. A tempting offer, right?

You will also see many people outside offering guided tours. DO NOT PAY IN ADVANCE because they may simply take your money and tell you to “wait for 5 minutes” and then disappear!

Of course, always keep an eye out for pickpockets, and be aware that if you want to take a photo with the “gladiators” you’ll find outside, it will cost you from €5 to €15!

COLOSSEUM OPENING HOURS

In general, the Colosseum is open every day, even on weekends. The operating hours in 2024 depend on the time of year:

  • Until February 15th: open from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.
  • From February 16th to March 15th: open from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm.
  • From March 16th to the last Saturday of March: open from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm.
  • From the last Sunday of March to August 31st: open from 8:30 am to 7:15 pm.
  • From September 1st to September 30th: open from 8:30 am to 7:00 pm.
  • From October 1st to the last Saturday of October: open from 8:30 am to 6:30 pm.

Keep in mind that the Colosseum is generally open from 9:00 am until one hour before sunset, and you can enter the monument until one hour before closing.

It is closed on January 1st and on December 25th.

ARE THERE REALLY HUGE QUEUES AT THE COLOSSEUM?

It is estimated that 6 million tourists visit the Colosseum every year, making it one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions. If you have only a few days in Rome and want to see many things, don’t waste your time waiting in line unnecessarily.

Remember that there is a solution: purchase your Colosseum tickets online from here or join a group.

Colosseum Rome

WHERE TO GO NEXT?

I know that many people want to combine the Vatican, but the truth is that it’s neither close nor worth visiting both of these attractions in one day. It’s better to go somewhere else after the Colosseum, like the Pantheon, which is about a 20-minute walk away.

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