Take this fascinating and fun tour to visit an ancient underground church, Roman catacombs and a 2nd century pagan temple, all in the company of your expert English-speaking guide. Your luxury climate-controlled transport will take you a little way out of Rome where you will also be able to admire the 3rd century Aurelian Walls and walk a small stretch of the Ancient Appian Way.
Your three hour tour will start at the Basilica of San Clemente, dedicated to Pope Clement I and one of Rome’s most interesting archaeological attractions. The 12th century basilica (sometimes referred to as the Lasagne Church) is built over a well preserved church dating to the 4th century which in turn is above a space that served as a Mithraic Temple (mithraeum) in the 2nd century. The older church is decorated with beautiful frescoes, the largest collection of Early Medieval wall paintings in Rome.
You will next travel 15 minutes out of Rome in your luxury climate controlled vehicle where you will visit the ancient catacombs. Almost everyone who comes to Rome will visit the Colosseum and the Vatican, but only a very small percentage take a tour of the Christian Catacombs of Domitilla. Deep underground and forming a hidden maze of tunnels, the catacombs were created in the 2nd century to provide burial space for the city, and contain the remains of the 150,000 bodies. As well as this spine-chilling aspect, the catacombs are also home to many important artefacts including a 2nd century fresco of the Last Supper.
From the comfort of your transport you will get a chance to examine up close the ancient defensive Aurelian Walls, and the next stop of your tour will be on the Appian Way. Connecting Rome to Brindisi in Puglia it is one of the earliest and most important roads of the Roman republic. Walk a short section in the footsteps of Julius Caesar! It is said that St Peter and Jesus met on this road, and it was the site of thousands of slave crucifixions during the Spartacus revolt. Your passionate guide will be ready to share her knowledge of the road’s rich history.
The authorities at the Basilica ask that visitrs retain from photographing and filming in the underground areas, hence the relative lack of photographs. Indded, in the comments to the video above, they repeat the requests - we're showing it as it would appear to pre-date this policy.