Tours


The VATICAN - 2 hours
This 2-hour walking tour covers St. Peter's Basilica and Square in-depth. The tour provides on overview of the development of the Catholic Church and Vatican City on that ground and covers all the masterpieces inside the grand church. Contrary to popular belief the entire interior of the church is decorated with mosaic art instead of painting. This tour offers the unique opportunity to visit the prestigious mosaic workshop and gallery space in order to witness the artists at work making mosaics for the Pope as gifts to foreign heads of State. You will learn about and discover the oldest artistic tradition of the Vatican. I can also assist you in making reservations for the Vatican Museums in order to skip the line and visit the Sistine Chapel on your own or with a separate guide.

Please contact me to assist you booking your tickets online to avoid the queue and setting up a guide for you for a private Standard Vatican Tour including 3 hours of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. 

Ancient Rome - 3 hours
  • Coliseum
  • Circus Maximus chariot race track
  • Overview of Roman Forum and Palatine Hill
  • San Clemente church and underground archaeological area
  • Ludus Magnus gladiator training barracks
This tour is a 3-hour walking tour of the ancient city including entrance to the Coliseum where you will also enjoy great views of the Roman Forum, Palatine Hill and Forum of Augustus. We will start at the Circus Maximus, the oldest and largest Roman athletic stadium. We will also visit the church and archaeological area of San Clemente with first through eleventh century architectural layers of religious temples and domestic dwellings underneath a Medieval Christian church in the heart of Rome. We will see also the nearby Ludus Magnus gladiator training barracks.


The Birth of Rome - 3 hours
  • Circus Maximus racetrack and Palatine Hill
  • Santa Maria in Cosmedin medieval church and the "Mouth of Truth"
  • Forum Boarium and Holitorium ancient commercial market center and ancient temples
  • Tiber Island and Rome's oldest bridges
  • San Nicolo in Carcere medieval church with underground ancient ruins 
  • Area of the Jewish Ghetto with the Augustus Portico and Marcellus Theater
This walking tour tells the story of Rome beyond its legends and rulers, a city not only of Caesars but of working class people. It focuses on how Rome started as an Etruscan kingdom and developed during the Roman Republic as a major commercial center in a series of forums connected to the more famous political, civic and religious Roman Forum. We will begin in Rome's oldest athletic stadium that is the Circus Maximus just under the Palatine Hill. Then we will continue along the river banks visiting the best preserved ancient temples in Rome before descending under 2 different medieval churches to discover the continual re-development of that area for centuries.  We will end on the Tiber island above Rome's first complex water system while standing on Rome's oldest bridge in front of the charming Jewish ghetto neighborhood.    


City of Rome Highlights - 2 or 3 hours
  • Piazza Navona
  • Pantheon
  • Piazza del Popolo and Caravaggio paintings inside church of Santa Maria del Popolo 
  • Mausoleum of Augustus and Augustan Altar of Peace
  • Largo Argentina archaeological site (where Caesar was stabbed)
A 3-hour walking tour of the historic center catered to your needs and interests. The walk includes visiting Piazza del Popolo, Emperor Augustus' ancient mausoleum and decorative Ara Pacis, and Piazza Navona with Bernini's famous fountain of the four rivers that is built on top of Emperor Domitian's athletic stadium. We will end the tour with a visit to the ancient mathematical wonder of the Pantheon temple now converted into a church. Along the way I will uncover the layers of urban redevelopment of the city and hidden curiosities detouring into churches with Caravaggio paintings and Michelangelo sculptures and around underground ruins that support modern buildings.


Appian Way Tour - 4 hours
  • Christian Catacomb of San Callisto
  • Ancient Aurelian Walls and museum of the walls at St. Sebastian gate
  • Scipioni tombs crypt and Imperial buildings
  • Fosse Ardeatine WWII memorial site
  • Quo Vadis church on Appian Way where Peter encountered an apparition of Christ
  • Ancient Roman aqueduct

Just beyond the best preserved section of the Ancient city walls is the bucolic landscape of the Appian Way, the earliest of the Roman road networks built in 300 B.C. Along the historic route you will visit several significant burial grounds including the mysterious labyrinth of the underground Christian catacombs, solemn WWII memorial, and the Sciopini tombs housed in a crypt of one of the most important families from Ancient Rome. The Scipioni site now lies underneath a stratification of ancient and modern buildings and has just recently been re-discovered and opened to the public. This tour escapes the bustle of Rome and allows you to walk underneath the arch of a Roman aqueduct and on top of the city's defensive walls attached to the most important city gate, imagining what it would have been like to guard the capital of the Empire and now enjoy Rome's landscapes and city-scape. This tour requires a driver. 

 
Family-style Italian dinner and cooking demonstration
  • 4 course dinner at an affluent Roman family's home
  • Cooking demonstration
Learn to cook and eat the Roman way in the elegant home of a local Roman family. Rather than search the streets for an authentic restaurant, a family in a wealthy Roman suburb will not only feed you but also provide a demonstration about the culture of Italy's culinary traditions and varieties from region to regions. Discover safeguarded cooking confidentials and simple recipes.

Food Tour with Dominique 
Explore the tastes of the historic neighborhoods of Trastevere and Campo di Fiori learning about the traditions and culture of these neighborhoods through their food. You will stop of various local shops for abundant and diverse food tastings. Dominque ends the walk with an annotated dinner at the Slow Food restaurant she owns explaining typical Roman dishes and dining etiquette. 


The Mysterious Etruscans - 2 hours
  • National Museum of pre-Roman civilization inside a grand Renaissance palace
Explore during a 2-hour visit the first civilization of Rome by examining Etruscan materials in the museum dedicated to the most ancient, powerful, talented and enigmatic civilization from Central Italy. Housed in a Renaissance villa designed in part by Michelangelo examine hundreds of domestic and personal items discovered in Etruscan tombs such as bronzes, jewelry, bucchero ware, and painted pottery. The highlights of the collection are the re-installments and re-creations of Etruscan burials designed to mimic domestic architecture from the necropoli atTarquinia and Cerveteri.

The Borghese Gallery - 2.5 hours
  • Museum of Ancient, Renaissance and Baroque art inside grand landscape park of Villa Borghese
This tour covers the art collection inside the Baroque palace in the grand Villa Borghese, Rome's second largest public park. The museum is situated in a 17th Century Cardinal's private palace built for the sole purpose of exhibiting his fine collection of ancient, Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces. Highlights of the collection include 6 masterpieces by the rebel painter Caravaggio and several sculptures by the illustrious Gian Lorenzo Bernini.

Etruscan Day Trip - 5 hours
  • Medieval city of Cerveteri and Bandidaccia necropolis
A  5-hour excursion travelling to Rome’s countryside visiting the most unique burial monuments of the pre-Roman civilization dating from 9th-2ndCenturies B.C. These tombs built as a home for the deceased and site of ceremony for surviving family members provide the greatest testimony to the enigmatic civilization of the Etruscans. With their painted walls, relief sculptures, architectural elements and material culture of bronzes and vases, these tombs reveal all that remains of the most dominant kingdom in Italy before the Romans. Cerveteri is roughly 30 miles from Rome and contains “tumulus” type tombs that resemble Egyptian pyramids and were once decorated and filled with personal items.  A new digital technology program at the site brings the dead to life.  This excursion can also include the Renaissance palace built on top of the Etruscan port ruins, La Posta Vecchia, where you can enjoy a Michelin star restaurant along the seaside.


Rome's Cathedral - In Depth - 2 hours
  • St. John Lateran Cathedral
  • Former Papal residences and Vatican History Museum
  • Lateran Baptistery
  • Holy Steps from Jerusalem
Visit the first Christian basilica constructed in Rome, and most important before the construction of the Vatican. St. John the Lateran is Rome's official Bishop's seat, that is the throne of the Pope. The tour covers the important artworks and relics inside the church, the impressive baptistery with ancient mosaics, the former Papal residences and Vatican History Museum and the "Holy Steps" ascended by Christ in Jerusalem that pilgrims are now obliged to climb on their knees. The Cathedral is in the center of Rome, property of the Vatican State, so imagine this tour to be an extension of the Vatican, without the hoards of crowds!

Wine Excursion - Tuscany - 7 hours
  • Drive through Tuscan landscape
  • Wine tour and tasting in a vineyard
  • Cultural visits in Medieval cities in Tuscany
This tour is full-day trip escaping the bustle of Rome and exploring the landscape of Tuscany. It is a leisurely drive through rollings hills and manicured olive farms and vineyards. We would explore the cultural sites in famous Medieval towns in Tuscany such as the towers of San Gimignano and the main square and Cathedral of Siena.  We would of course taste what the region is most famous for, wine and cheese.  Visiting vineyards we would get a tour of how the delicious wine and olive oil is processed and enjoy a tasting led by a certified wine expert.

 
Rome Scavenger Hunt- "Safari d'Arte - 2.5 hours
This tour is designed for elementary school aged kids as an interactive scavenger hunt throughout the city.  There are several different itineraries covered in a series of books called "Safari d'Arte." Kids will have their own copy of the book (in English) that will serve as a tool to discovering and remembering the city's legends.  With the book they can take notes and read clues while on the trail, and have the book to take home with them as a history reference and token from their adventure. 

 
Tivoli Day Trip - 4.5 hours
  • Hadrian's Villa archeaological site
  • Renaissance Villa and Gardens of Cardinal D'Este
Just 20 miles outside Rome find the best preserved examples of countryside villas in Italy and tour 2 villa prototypes comparing Renaissance and ancient.  First tour the Renaissance villa of Cardinal D'Este with a garden compared to Versailles including hundreds of playful water displays, terraces, lakes and open spaces. Then visit the villa of Emperor Hadrian, the most important remnants of his triumphant reign, a series of buildings such as bath complexes, libraries, storage rooms, gyms and temples that cover almost 200 acres. 

*Please also consider transportation with these tours as well as airport transports, both of which can be arranged with professional drivers.
*Also consider any customized tour you can imagine focusing on the specifics of Ancient, Renaissance, and Baroque Rome.