The number one thing on the Husband’s Italy list was seeing the Colosseum and what better way to see it than an after hours tour at night? Sounds magical, doesn’t it? Well, it was.
We met our tour guide, Joseph, and the rest of the small group of tourists at Piazza Venezia and headed to the Colosseum. We got a nice guided tour from Joseph on the way there, which was easy to hear while still exploring thanks to the Walks of Italy headsets.
We learned about the giant horse statue, which is the biggest equestrian statue in the world and can actually accommodate a group of grown men eating in the belly off the horse! (True story. There was a celebratory dinner held in the stomach of the horse when the casting of the statue was completed.)
We saw statues of Zeus’s sons, wearing eggshell caps that represent Zeus’s transformation to a swan to seduce their mother, Leda. (They were so weird back then).
We passed Mamertine Prison, where Peter and Paul were held prior to their execution.
We marveled at the ruins of the Roman Forum.
Finally, we made it to the Colosseum. We left Joseph and joined Guido the guide’s group. Separately, our groups were too small to go to the Colosseum after hours. But compared to the 29,000 people that visit daily, a group of 25 wasn’t so bad.
The first thing you notice is just how grand the Colosseum is. It’s really unbelievable to think that it only took eight years to build, and it was nearly 2,000 years ago! Imagine how long it would take now.
The first thing we noticed was how few people were there. During the day the Colosseum has an average of 29,000 visitors. The night tours are groups of 25 and each group has a specific time slot. It’s really remarkable having the opportunity to walk around the Colosseum without being bumped by 1000’s of people.
Looking down at the stage area.
Can you imagine how that must look during the day? I would think you wouldn’t be able to enjoy it very much.
After walking around the floor of the Colosseum we headed down to the underground area, where the gladiators and animals waited to be brought up to the floor to fight. It was really surreal walking around there, know that people had spent their last few moments on earth waiting here.
On our way back out of the Colosseum, our guide showed us where you could still see marks from where they built the walls.
See that X on the ground? That was where the columns was supposed to be placed. They were made somewhere else and then brought to the Colosseum.
It was truly amazing to have such an intimate look at the Colosseum. It’s hard to imagine 80,000+ people sitting there, cheering on the death of men or animals.
Walks of Italy paid for my ticket, but not my opinion. These thoughts are all my own (and some of the Husband’s).