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11 BEST Catacombs of Rome Tours (selected by an Italian)

Find the very best Catacombs of Rome tours to make sure you have a memorable adventure exploring the eerie, underground side of the city. I’ve made a super comprehensive list for you! 

Rome is one of the most important – and visited – cities in the world. Center of the Roman Empire and later capital of the Kingdom and Republic of Italy, Rome has an incredibly rich history that’s evident in pretty much every corner. 

From the astounding Colosseum to the Forum and Palatine Hill, the ruins of its past keep the stories alive. And if you add mouthwatering Italian cuisine, picturesque streets, and breathtaking architecture to the mix, you’ve got yourself an unparalleled city destination

But did you know there’s more to Rome’s ancient settlements…and many of them are underground? Rome in fact hides a mysterious world beneath its streets: the catacombs

A dark arched tunnel underground, inserted in an article about Catacombs of Rome tours

These centuries-old tunnels are a time capsule, packed with art, relics, and mind-blowing constructions from the first five centuries AD. Home to enthralling tales as well as invaluable antiques, the catacombs are a lesser-known and highly recommended attraction that’s a great addition to your 3-day itinerary in Rome.

In this article, I’ve rounded up the 11 best catacombs of Rome tours so that whichever option you decide to join, you know it will be good value. From unveiling the mysteries beneath the Appian Way to soaking in the ambiance of Capuchin Crypt, the choices are many and varied. Check them out!

👉 Why rely on my guide for Catacombs of Rome tours? As an Italian who’s devoted years to exploring and writing about Italy’s rich history and hidden gems, I’ve curated this list with an eye for the exceptional. My recommendations focus on tours that delve deep into the mysterious world beneath Rome, offering both quality and captivating storytelling.

I generally use Viator and Get Your Guide to book tours around the world. I especially recommend them for their great cancellation policy, which allows you to cancel most activities up to 24 hours in advance and get a full refund. 

OUR PICK: The BEST Catacombs of Rome Tour

Unearth the mysteries lurking beneath the city’s streets on this Rome: Crypts & Catacombs Tour with Bone Chapel & Transfers. You’ll hop on an air-conditioned coach and breeze through the city to explore three of Rome’s most intriguing attractions. 

Start by visiting the 2-millennia-old catacombs where Christians would practice their faith, safe from their persecutors. You’ll learn about the history and purpose of the passageways which were not only used for praying but also for burials. 

Next up is the 4th-century Basilica di San Martino al Monte, filled with spectacular and ancient frescoes. Your last stop will be the spine-chilling Capuchin Crypt, an eerie series of chapels adorned with the bones of 4,000 Capuchin monks, and the Capuchin Museum. 

This tour of catacombs in Rome allows you to skip the lines at the three attractions, and gain insights on each location from your knowledgeable guide. 

📝 This tour includes: Transfers, a guide, skip-the-line tickets for all attractions, and an audio guide to the Capuchin Crypt and Museum. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Other 3 GREAT Tours of the Catacombs in Rome

▶️ This Guided Rome Catacombs Tour of St. Callixtus and Appian Way is a 3-hour excursion that takes you to the catacombs located beneath the city’s ancient aqueducts. Travel by bus to the site, and then trace the footsteps of the early Romans as you walk along the rustic Appian Way. 

Then, travel back in time as you explore the Catacombs of St. Callixtus, which were carved in the first centuries AD and served as the final resting place for Christians. Discover the burial niches, venture into the Crypt of the Popes, and admire the haunting beauty of sarcophagi as your guide provides the stories that go with the sights. 

📝 This tour includes: Roundtrip transfers from a meeting point, entrance tickets, a guided tour of the catacombs, and headsets. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

▶️ Join this Small-Group Express Tour of Roman Catacombs with Transfer and unearth Rome’s enigma with a professional guide. Hop on a comfortable minivan and head to Appian Way’s fabled Catacombe di Santa Domitilla, a series of subterranean burial chambers and tunnels. 

Descend 16 meters underground to discover the four levels of the crypts, and trace the religious and mythological frescoes to discover the site’s history. Learn about the local martyrs and the shift from Paganism to Christianity, and pay a visit to the 4th-century Basilica of Nereus and Achilleus, also located below the ground. 

📝 This tour of Catacombs in Rome includes: Roundtrip transfers from a meeting point, a guide, entrance fees, and headsets. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

▶️ On this Ancient Catacombs and Underground Rome | Semi-Private and Private Tours, pick your preferred tour mode – shared or private – and embark on an irresistible adventure to uncover the mysteries of subterranean Rome. 

You’ll visit the incredible old tunnels of Basilica di San Clemente, and follow a guide through the underground passageways, listening to stories about the Pagan rituals that took place there before it was turned into Christian catacombs.  

Marvel at the millennia-old paintings, and then head to the Catacombs of Santa Domitilla where the early Christians were buried. It’s one of the most important ancient graveyards in Italy! The small-group tour is limited to six people, guaranteeing personalized attention. 

📝 This tour of the Catacombs in Rome includes: Transportation between the sites, a local guide, and entrance fees. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Appian Way & Rome Catacombs Tour by E-Bike

The Appian Way Catacombs and Roman Aqueducts – Cannondale EBike Tour is a fun-filled adventure that combines a scenic e-bike ride along the beautiful Appian Way with a trip to the eerie underground. 

Catch sight of the impressive Aurelian Walls and the grand Circus of Maxentius as you glide toward the tranquil countryside, passing by the ancient aqueducts and the Thermal Baths of Caracalla. Leave your bikes behind to descend into the 2nd-century Catacombs of St. Callixtus, where you’ll learn about the burial rituals that took place in that very spot. 

📝 This tour includes: A Cannondale e-bike and helmet rental, a guide, catacombs visit, and water. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Catacombs in Rome Tour by Golf Cart

Ditch the foot fatigue with this Rome: Catacombs and Appian Way Guided Tour by Golf Cart, and cruise the city in style. Zoom past some iconic sights, including the Trajan’s Column, Circus Maximus, and the Colosseum on a very original tour of the city. 

Then, head to the Appian Way, an ancient Roman road used for military purposes in the 4th century. There you’ll visit the intriguing catacombs located 16 meters below the ground, which brim with history, religion, and a tad of eeriness. 

Geared with a set of headsets, you’ll hear your guide loud and clear as they cover everything you might be eager to know about these mysterious burial sites. 

📝 This tour includes: A tour of Rome by golf cart, a guide, entrance to the catacombs, headsets, and water. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

After-Hours Tour of the Catacombs in Rome

This Tour of Rome Catacombs: Exclusive After Hours & Bone Chapel grants you access to the ancient burial grounds when all the tourists have already gone home, ensuring an intimate and very special experience. 

Start by touring the Capuchin Crypt, better known as the Bone Chapel after the 4,000 remains of Capuchin Monks that decorate the chapels. Take advantage of the audio guide provided to learn about this creepy location, and then follow your guide to the Roman Catacombs. 

Descend into the ground for a tour of the catacombs after they’ve closed to the public, relishing the excitement of being the only group to walk the silent, mysterious passageways. The best part? Your expert guide will tell you all about the birth of Christianity, and the role that these catacombs played in the religion! 

📝 This tour includes: Transportation, a guide, tickets with audio guide for the Capuchin Crypt, and Rome Catacombs visit with after-hours entrance. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

A Private Tour of Rome Catacombs

On this Catacombs of Rome and Ancient Appian Way 3-Hour Tour with Private Driver you will descend into the ancient Catacombs of San Callisto or San Sebastiano to explore tombs and art. 

Your driver will pick you up at your hotel, and tell you what to expect at the catacombs which you’ll explore on your own with the provided tickets. You’ll then be taken to the Appian Way, the road used by the Romans to transport military supplies during the 4th century AD. 

Learn about the sites from your driver, and take your time exploring them before returning to your accommodation in Rome. 

📝 This Rome Catacombs private tour includes: Private transportation, an English-speaking driver, and entrance tickets. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Family-Friendly Tour to the Catacombs

Dive into a thrilling adventure at Rome’s Catacombs with this Catacombs for Kids – Private Family Tour. You’ll visit the underground cemeteries with a friendly guide who’ll be in charge of conducting the treasure hunt, an activity that will keep you and your children invested in the tour. 

Solve riddles as you explore the Capuchin Crypt and the Catacombs of Santa Domitilla, and win prizes while learning about the catacombs’ history in a way that’s appropriate for children to hear. 

📝 This tour includes: A guide, entrance tickets, transfers between the sites, and a treasure hunt. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Rome Catacombs Guided Tours with No Transfers

▶️ Uncover the hidden world below with a Rome: Catacombs of Priscilla Entry Ticket & Guided Tour, getting to visit one of the many underground sites used by the early Christians for funerals and burials. 

What makes the Catacombs of Priscilla stand out, however, is that it wasn’t originally used as a resting place for the departed but as an arenarium, which was then found by the Christians and incorporated into the complex structure of floors and niche tombs that comprised the catacombs. 

You’ll gain access to the site and explore it with a guide, learning about the history of Christianity in Rome, the process of shifting from Pagan rituals to Christian belief, and stories of local martyrs. 

📝 This tour includes: A guided tour of the Catacombs of Priscilla with entrance tickets. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

▶️ Delve into the depths of history with this Rome: Catacombs of Domitilla Entry Ticket & Guided Tour. Descend 16 meters underground to explore the chillingly ancient burial chambers decorated with a blend of Pagan and Christian frescoes. 

Accompanied by a guide, you’ll learn about the martyrs’ sacred resting grounds, and the importance of the catacombs for Roman Christianity in the first centuries AD. As you navigate the maze of chambers, you’ll discover the site’s restoration processes and hear stories from almost 2,000 years old. 

📝 This tour includes: A tour guide, and entrance tickets to the catacombs. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Rome Catacombs Tours FAQs

Can you tour the Roman catacombs?

Visiting the Catacombs in Rome is possible, though there are no longer bones in them. When touring the sites you’ll get to explore the narrow passageways and discover the burial niches of the early Christians. 

Do you need a tour for Rome catacombs?

You don’t need a tour to visit the Roman catacombs, but it’s highly recommended to avoid the hassle of transportation from Rome and to fully grasp the meaning and history of these ancient burial sites. 

How long does a Rome Catacombs tour take?

Catacombs tours in Rome take approximately three hours and include roundtrip transfers from the center of Rome, and a guided visit of the underground tunnels. Some also take you to visit the Bone Chapel or the Appian Way, taking a bit longer. 

Can you take photos in the Roman catacombs?

Taking photos inside the Roman Catacombs is not allowed. 

Where are the catacombs located in Rome?

The Catacombs are beneath the city, most of them on the Appian Way Regional Park, located 4 miles (6.6 km) away from the city center. 

Are there Vatican catacombs tours? 

The Vatican Necropolis can only be visited with special permission, so it’s not a popular underground location to visit in the city. Vatican Scravi, however, can be visited with a guided tour. 

  • Stefania Guglielmi

    Stefania Guglielmi is the founder of Every Steph. Originally from Bologna, Italy, she's been traveling full-time since 2016 and has visited over 50 countries across 6 continents. She believes sustainable travel and luxury travel can go hand in hand and has been advocating for responsible tourism since 2014. Stefania's advice and travel experiences have been featured in important publications such as Business Insider, Refinery29, and Yahoo Money.