Home > Itineraries in Rome > Itineraries for Weekend in Rome > Ancient Rome Tours > Day 2: Circus Maximus, Coelium and Aventine


13729 Visits
Distance: 4 km Duration: 8 hours

Itinerary description

With this itinerary you will have the opportunity to visit some of the most beautiful and ancient ruins of Rome, such as the Circus Maximus and the impressive Thermae of Caracalla. Then you’ll visit the Coelium and the Aventine Hill, where some of the oldest churches of the city are located and from where you can enjoy a beautiful panoramic of Rome.

Since some locations are archaeological sites, it is highly recommended to walk from one place to another.
Time Required:
It takes about  8 hours to visit all of the sites mentioned, depending on the amount of time you decide to stop in each archeological area or church.

The day begins from the subway stop "Circo Massimo”(Line A).  Take a relaxing stroll through Circus Maximus, the oldest and largest stadium in Rome, built by Caesar in 46 BC, but already used in Tarquini's time. The Circus Maximus is located in the valley between the Aventine Hill and the Palatine Hill. Walking through the area you can see the remains of ancient steps, although at present there is little left of the original structures. After visiting the Circus Maximus, the itinerary continues towards the Thermae of Caracalla, the great public baths of Rome, opened in 217 AD by order of  the Emperor Caracalla. The bath house ceased to operate in 537 AD. It is still possible to see the caldarium, the tepidarium, the frigidarium and  the natatio. We continue on towards the Coelium Hill, one of the seven hills of Rome, where you can enjoy a beautiful view over the Ancient city. Here there are several churches that are worth a visit. The first is the Church of St Mary in Domnica, built at the behest of Paschal I. The interior is full of beautiful mosaics, testimony of the Carolingian period in Rome. Near the church are the gardens of Villa Celimontana, a beautiful place to take a break. We also suggest you visit the ancient church of Sts John and Paul, often used today for weddings, after which you can head over to the church of St Gregory the Great on the Coelian built in 12th century. Then from Coelium, walk back in the direction of Circus Maximus to reach the Mouth of Truth, a famous roman attraction. Go up the Aventine Hill, one of the seven hills of Rome, which is one of the residential areas in the city. The Aventine Hill hosts the Municipal Rose Garden, which has about 1,100 species of roses from all around the world. From here you can enjoy great views over the city: the Circus Maximus, the Palatine and the Synagogue. The itinerary continues on to the Orange’s Garden, a relaxing place with beautiful views Gianicolo and Pincio. Continue on Via di Santa Sabina where you’ll find the church of St Sabina at the Aventine, built in the 5th century and also St Mary’s Priory Church, located close to Cavalieri di Malta Square. Go straight and you’ll arrive at the Non-Catholic Cemetery, considered one of the most beautiful cemeteries in Rome. In front of the cemetery there's the ancient Pyramid of Gaius Cestius, built as a tomb between 18 and 12 BC. The building was inspired by an Egyptian model, very popular in Rome after the conquest of Egypt during the era of the Roman Empire. We also suggest you visit the Museum of Via Ostiense, which contains historical documents detailing ancient roman architecture.


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