Rome’s best hop-on, hop-off sightseeing tours


The city of Rome has plenty that you can explore. Once you are in Rome it would be a shame to miss its topmost historical attractions. Make sure to keep the Colosseum, Sistine Chapel, and Vatican Museums at the top of your bucket list. As your trip will be incomplete without seeing these well-known landmarks. 

There are many ways that one can explore the city but I would strongly recommend taking the hop-on hop-off Rome bus tour. It is the most convenient and easiest way to travel. Since you will; be saved from worrying about the use of public transport and maps. An open-top double-decker bus tour will make your journey more enjoyable as you can just simply relax while enjoying the breathtaking views and landmarks of the Eternal City. Most of all bus tours tend to be cost-effective compared to the other modes of travel. The whole tour will take approximately 2 hours to complete within which you will get to see 8 of the topmost attractions in Rome.

Reasons behind choosing Rome bus tours for sightseeing:

  • Sightseeing Rome bus tours will give you the facility of audio guides in 8 different languages. Hence this will make it easier for you to understand all the information about the different landmarks
  • The buses are available 365 days a year.
  • You can enjoy a panoramic view of the city since the double-decker buses are open.
  • The itineraries include all the well-known parts of the city.
  • There is the facility of choosing between a 24,48 or 72-hour ticket to explore the city.
  • Most of the buses offer free wi-fi.
  • You can get skip-the-line Rome Tickets if you wish to go inside each highlight.

Bus route

  • Termini: 

Basically, this is the starting point of the whole trip from where you will board the tour bus. Luckily this route will give you the opportunity to have a glimpse at a few historical landmarks. 

The National Rome Museum is situated amongst four different buildings named Palazzo Massimo, Baths of Diocletian, Palazzo Altemps, and the Cyrpta Balbi. You will get to look at classical collections of art, sculptures, and many archaeological objects. Another famous attraction is the Santa Maria degli Angeli. This church is known because of its decoration. The walls are filled with frescoes and there are many marble columns that are colored.

  • Santa Maria Maggiore: 

This Catholic ancient basilica is known as one of the largest churches, which has been dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The Basilica was built in the mid-fourth century. Apparently, Virgin Mary came in front of the Pope and gave instructions for the church to be built.

You can see the interior of the church has floors made of mosaics and marble from medieval times.  Also columns from other Roman buildings. The ceiling represents the Renaissance period. Whereas the chapels and domes go back to the Baroque period.

  • Colosseum: 

The famous Colosseum was built by Emperor Vespasian back in 72 AD.  In fact, the Colosseum is known to be one of the seven wonders of the world. It took nearly a decade to build the Colosseum which was done by 60,000 Jewish slaves. 

The exterior part had three stories of entrances that were arched. Also, the columns were of different styles At the bottom were simple columns in Doric order. The arch of Constantine was at the front entrance. This was built in AD. 315 in honor of the victory of Constantine over Maxentius.

The Colosseum represents a symbol of capital punishment. In Italy, the death penalty was announced back in 1948.  If anyone over the world has their death sentence announced. Then the illumination lights of the night change into gold from white, of the Colosseum.

Basically, it was used for witnessing fights between gladiators, battles among animals, and the killing of prisoners. The Colosseum was so big that had 80 entrances and could accommodate up to 50,000 people at a time. 

While taking the Colosseum Tours, you can also see the arena where the gladiators used to battle against each other. Along with the arch of Constantine (symbol of Christian faith), the Hypogeum ( backstage used by gladiators before going out to battle), Ludus Magnus( training school for gladiators), and more astonishing places.

  • Castel Sant’ Angelo: 

The castle is situated in Parco Adriano in Rome and holds a history that is both fascinating and complex at the same time. Unfortunately, the structure has been changed a number of times since the time it was built. A number of burials took place here which include Marcus Aurelius, Caracalla, and Hadrian being put to rest here. The building was intended to be used as a mausoleum (a building made of stone for the placing of the dead above the ground) for the family. It is located in Parco Adriano in Rome.

The Museum of Castel Sant’ Angelo allows visitors to capture the look of the footprints of the Archangel. The prints are in the form of round stones that have been kept from when he descended to Earth to announce that the plague will come to an end. ·      

The castle has five floors with a spiral ramp with rooms decorated with renaissance paintings. By climbing the ramp you will be able to view the chamber of ashes. These were used to incarnate historical people. 

  • Pantheon: 

The Pantheon is still known as the best-preserved building from ancient Rome.  It was a Roman temple completed in 126 AD. Pantheon means, ‘ honor all Gods.’ Hence because of the unique design, it stood as a temple to all the Gods.

The circular building has the same height and diameter which is 43.5 meters. The dome of the building has an opening that has a diameter of 9 meters. This allows natural light to enter the building. Inside the building, there are a number of tombs of Italian Kings along with many works of art. The floors are made of marble designed with geometrical patterns.  In fact, the painter and Renaissance architect Raphael is buried inside the Pantheon.

But the main attraction of the Pantheon is in fact the well-known dome. It has been there for 1300 years and is still known to be the world’s largest unsupported dome. The interior is decorated with paintings of Italian kings and poets.                                                                   

  • Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel: 

The Vatican Museum was built by Pope Julius II in the sixteenth century. The museums welcome more than an astonishing 6 million tourists every year. In fact, to enter the Sistine Chapel you need Vatican tour tickets. After that, you can explore all these museums.

Some of the museums are:

  Pio- Clementino Museum: Done by Pope Clement XIV and Pope Pius VI. Displays the most important works done by Greeks in the Vatican

Gallery of the Chandeliers: Here you can find the collection of chandeliers from the second century A.D.

Gallery of Maps: The walls of the gallery have been decorated with paintings of maps in fresco.  This was done between 1580 and 1585. The maps show the Italian regions and churches.

Egyptian Museum: which consists of Egyptian sculptures and the famous sarcophagi. There are also replicas of Egyptian models which originate from the Villa Adriana.

Borgia Apartment: The apartments used to belong to Pope Alexander VI. Currently, they are used as exhibition rooms to keep the collection of Modern Religious Art.

The Sistine Chapel is a must-see if you visit Vatican City. The building since it is the temple where popes are selected and crowned.  It was constructed by Giovanni of Dolci between 1473 and 1481.

The main attraction is the design as there are endless frescoes that cover the ceilings and walls entirely. In fact, all the frescoes which cover the ceiling of the chapel were done by the artist Michelangelo between 1508 and 1512. The image of the creation of Adam is situated in the middle of the vault. This represents the story from Genesis in which Adam is given life by God.

  • Trevi Fountain: 

The most well-known fountain of Rome is known as the Trevi Fountain. It took approximately 30 long years to complete and was built by Giuseppe Pannini in 1762 in the district of Trevi. The height of the fountain is 85 feet and the width is 160 feet. A material named Travertine was used to construct the fountain.

The landmark represents Neptune on his Chariot and the God of the Sea. Interestingly the fountain gives out 2,824,800 cubic feet of water every day, which is recycled. But unfortunately, you cannot drink directly from the fountain.  In fact, when Michel Angelo dies apparently five kegs of water were found in his residence.  If you do visit the fountain make sure to toss a coin inside as people say that a person who throws a coin will, ‘ one day return to Italy.

  • Piazza Barberini: 

This Piazza is renowned for its main attraction which is the centerpiece, the Fontana del Tritone. Built by Bernini back in 1625 the two fountains of the Piazza are located at the end of Via Venetto.

Fontana del Tritone stands in the center of the square which was sculpted in 1643. There you can see four dolphins holding up the god of the sea named Triton. The fountain is one of Bernini’s most famous ones he used a sedimentary rock to build it.

Another fountain goes by the name of Fontana Delle Api which was done by Bernini back in 1644. The fountain is decorated with bees and it was built in honor of Pope Urban VIII.

Things to keep in mind

  • Since the buses are open it is highly recommended that you bring sunglasses, comfortable shoes, and a sun hat. Especially if it’s summer.
  • Due to Covid-19, you must wear a mask at all times and maintain social distancing. Both on the bus and when you visit the tourist attractions.
  • You must present a certificate that states that you took the Covid-19 vaccination.
  • All passengers must carry a form of ID that is valid. It could be a passport, student card, driver’s license, etc.
  • You will not be allowed to carry large bags, alcohol, drugs, or pets when riding the tour bus.


If you have less time on your hands to explore Rome then the hop-on hop-off bus tour is ideal for you. Just purchase a ticket of your choice and enjoy taking the tour at your own pace. The 24/48/72 hour tickets let you get down at any stop to explore the landmarks and then allow you to hop back to your desired stop within the given time period. If you do not wish to get down then just roam around for a maximum of two hours and take a look at the landmarks from the open double-decker buses. 

Routes have been fixed in such a way that you can see the most well-known landmarks of Rome. The tour includes taking a view of the Colosseum, Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, Castel Sant’ Angelo, and five other places.

Make sure that you book the bus tickets in advance to avoid any hassle on the day you plan to take the tour. Do not forget to carry the vaccination certificate and wear your mask at all times.

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