Discover the roots of Christianity, its holy symbols and golden mosaics, visiting the great early Christian basilicas of St. John in Lateran the first church ever built, Scala Santa, the Holy stairway with the holy blood of Jesus, Santa Maria Maggiore with its glorious early Christian mosaics and St. Paul’s outside the walls with its peaceful cloister and original portraits of all the 266 popes. Follow the steps of St. Peter and Paul and the first Christian martyrs in the holy city.
Appian Way and Catacombs
Explore the peace and quite of the Appian Way, the Queen of consular roads, built in 312 BC just beyond the city walls, surrounded by the roman countryside, olive grounds, pine trees and lined by aristocratic mausolea. We will visit the imposing Tower of Cecilia Metella, once a tomb, turned into a fortress in the Middle Ages, the Villa of Maxentiurs with its circus for charriot races and the Catacombs of St. Sebastian, the first underground cemetery ever built.
Rome wasn't built in a day and it wasn't built at the same level. Leyers and leyers of different centuries can be revealed visiting different sites in Rome. The area around the colosseum is particularly rich of excavations which made possible to explore the levels which lies beneath the modern level of Rome. We will visit the roman houses which burnt during the fire of emperor Nero, now under st. Clement's church and Irish dominican cloister, then take a look to the imposing statue of Michelangelo's Moses in st. Peter's in chain to end with the roman houses under the church of St. John and Paul.
St. Angel Castle
This imposing castle looks a little bit intimidating from the outside: a circular castle defended by thick towers at the corners called with the names of the 4 evangelists, merlots and cannons! But if you don’t mind looking up closer, you will be entertained by the sweet lives of Renaissance spoiled Popes, which accommodated the Palace, in order to pass nicely the months of sieges, with rich rooms, comfortable bathrooms, beautiful bedrooms decorated by the best artists of Renaissance. The castle, as the entire Rome, is the result of the transformation of an ancient structure, the tomb of Emperor Hadrian into a medieval castle during the tough middle Ages. It was also used as a prison and here according to the Puccini Opera, the heroin Tosca committed suicide diving from the top of the Castle. So the layers of the castle give you the chance to follow the history of Rome from the Empire up to the Golden Renaissance years of 1500s.The castle was named after the Angel Michael because he appeared on top of the castle to announce the end of a terrible plague!