Discover 2000 Years of Roman History on a Castel Sant'Angelo Tour
Castel Sant’Angelo was originally built as the tomb of Roman Emperor Hadrian but was later converted into a military fortress, the Pope’s residence, a Renaissance-era prison, and then finally into a museum to preserve the history of Rome. Built in 135 AD, the castle now houses Hadrian’s tomb, Papal apartments, and several magnificent works of art including paintings, sculptures, pottery, frescoes, murals, and more. Explore the labyrinth that is spread over six levels and comprises several courtyards, stately halls, and frescoed rooms.
Read on to know more about how a Castel Sant'Angelo tour is the best way to explore this mausoleum-turned-museum.
Why Take a Castel Sant'Angelo Guided Tour?
Castel Sant’Angelo is one of the oldest and most iconic tourist attractions in Rome, Italy. Here are a few reasons why you should take a Castel Sant'Angelo tour.
Highlights Covered on Your Castel Sant'Angelo Tour
The Papal Apartments
You can access the Papal Apartments from the Courtyard of the Angel. The residence rooms house beautiful ceramics, sculptures, and frescoes from the Renaissance era, all of which have been properly preserved. The Papal Apartments are also home to a bronze statue of the Archangel Michael, which was sculpted by Raffaelo da Montelupo, celebrated artist Michelangelo’s apprentice.
Head to the fifth floor of the mausoleum-turned-museum for a glimpse of the beautiful terrace and spectacular panoramic views of the city of Rome. The last act of Puccini’s opera Tosca, where the heroine jumps off the roof after the execution of her lover, was shot right here on this terrace. Grab a seat at the rooftop café and soak in the scenic views of the city while enjoying a meal.
Passetto di Borgo
Constructed in 1277, Passetto di Borgo is an 800-meter-long elevated corridor or passageway that connects the mausoleum to the Vatican City. It was commissioned by and served as the residence of Pope Nicholas III. Many Popes, like Pope Alexander VI and Pope Clement VII, used it as an escape route when they were under attack. The corridor is visible from the mausoleum and is also opened to the public during the summer months.
Castel Sant’Angelo is home to one of the finest collections of art in the world. From famous sculptures to frescoes and murals, the mausoleum houses it all. Several fragments were discovered from Hadrian’s tomb during excavation and the many restoration campaigns that took place later.
Private collectors also donated artworks to the mausoleum-turned-museum. Do not miss the iconic sculpture of Archangel Michael on the roof. It is the highlight of Castel Sant’Angelo.
Guided Tours vs Non-Guided Tours
What to Expect on a Castel Sant'Angelo Tour?
A Castel Sant’Angelo tour is the perfect way to visit such a complex and iconic historical attraction, especially if it’s your first time. To help you explore the iconic museum more efficiently, we recommend opting for a guided tour because it includes a tour guide who knows everything about the place. With a long history of over 2000 years, there is much to know about this ancient site.
Once you meet your tour guide, you will be taken inside the mausoleum and shown all the important sites like the Papal Apartments, Hadrian’s Tomb, Ponte Sant’Angelo, Passetto di Borgo, the terrace, and the stunning works of art that adorn the museum. There is so much to explore inside Castel Sant’Angelo and a guided tour is the best way to do so.
- The first important tip is to book your tickets early on.
- Wear footwear with a firm grip because you will have to walk a lot inside the museum.
- Read up about Castel Sant’Angelo if you’re not taking a guided tour.
- The best time to visit the museum is in the early hours when the attraction opens or late in the day before closing time.
- Certain sections of the castle are not wheelchair friendly or suited for those with reduced mobility.
- You will need at least 2 hours to tour the mausoleum. Make sure you plan accordingly.
- Luggage or large bags are not allowed inside the castle.
- There is no parking facility at the castle.
- Avoid visiting on the first Sunday of every month. The castle gets very crowded as entry is free for all.
- Elevator is available upon request.
- The museum also houses a cafeteria in case you wish to grab a meal post a tiring tour.
Frequently Asked Questions About Castel Sant'Angelo Tours
A. Castel Sant’Angelo tours are priced at €36.57 and upwards.
A. There are two types of Castel Sant’Angelo tours available – Castel Sant’Angelo: Angels and Demons Experience and Combo (Save 5%): Borghese Gallery +Castel Sant’Angelo Tickets.
A. The Castel Sant Angelo guided tours are available in five languages – English, French, Italian, German, and Spanish.
A. Yes. The Castel Sant Angelo tours are worth it because it’s the best way to explore this spectacular and popular heritage site and learn all about its history and the artworks on display. The mausoleum-turned-museum is almost 2000 years old and deeply rooted in history.
A. The Castel Sant’Angelo guided tours can be anywhere between 2 to 5 hours long, based on the tour you choose.