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Rome on Republic Day

Hello,
Huge fan - thanks for all that you do!

We are traveling to the Mediterranean next summer and our port day in Rome falls on Republic Day (and its a Sunday). The cruise company appears to be offering tours to the Vatican, Coliseum, etc but the local private companies tell us we 'won't be able to get near them' or they will be closed.

What would suggest for our one day in Rome? Any suggestions on a guide company? I've checked the Rick Steves site and was unable to find one day tours.

Thanks for your help!
- Inez

Posted by
8796 posts

The cruise company appears to be offering tours to the Vatican,
Coliseum, etc but the local private companies tell us we 'won't be
able to get near them' or they will be closed.

You've a couple of issues here with Sunday, June 2. First off, the Vatican Museums are closed all Sundays but for part of the day on the 4th Sunday of a month. The National Museums - such as the Colosseum - are free on first Sundays of a month: definitely NOT a day to try and do Rome's most-visited attraction. To my knowledge, tours are not available at some national museums on First Sundays: this is true for sure of the Colosseum, anyway.

There has been talk recently of the Italian government doing away with Free Sundays but I've not seen any news on that lately.

But there are other attractions which will be open. For instance, if you jump on reservations as SOON as they're available for June 2 (abt. 3 months in advance; they will go VERY QUICKLY!) Galleria Borghese will be open plus still observing their excellent crowd control, even tho it's a national museum and free (aside from small reservation fee) on that Sunday.

http://gebart.it/en/home_en/borghese-gallery-and-museum

Ostia Antica is another possibility although it's not "in" Rome. Does your ship offer a tour to that one? Although it's a National Museum and free on First Sundays, it's unlikely to be as heavily visited as some attractions in the historic center of the city. If you can find other shipmates interested in this one, it's possible you could split the cost of a private driver.

http://www.ostiaanticatickets.it/en/

Or via train, although it's a little messy:
https://civitavecchia.portmobility.it/en/ostia-antica-archeological-ruins

A number of churches in Rome should also be open for visiting between Sunday masses, and many guidebooks provide self-guided walks you could do on your own, taking in the architecture from the exterior of those landmarks either closed or overrun. Just a start?

Posted by
8796 posts

Hello Inez, we docked in Civitavecchia the same day last year! On
June the 2nd most of the museums were closed

Linda, can you be more specific about which "most" museums those were? The major museums in Rome do not show complete closures on June 2 unless it falls on a regular closure day, which is usually Mondays for National Museums, and Sundays for the Vatican. Delayed openings at some may be possible. June 2nd was on a Saturday last year. While I'd read that the Colosseum, Forum and some others along the Via dei Fori Imperiali parade route were closed in the morning, they were said to be open in the afternoon. Your guide should have been able to pre-arrange access to at least some of the biggies.

The specific challenge this year is the date falling on a first Sunday of the month, which affects the top 2 most-visited attractions in Rome, not that there aren't other things to see, of course.

(Editing: the poster this was in response to was removed.)