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Tourists walk in the Colosseum near the hypogeum (underground) on October 14, 2010, in Rome. The underground, never before available to the public, is now open for visitors.
Gladiators, wild beasts and ... tourists? Yep. People visiting the Colosseum can now walk around the underground chambers where lions and tigers were caged and gladiators waited to hear their fate.
More than 18,000 people visit the amphitheatre every day. The newly opened areas will be accessible to guided tours of a maximum of 25 people at a time.
Rome in a nutshell - travel guide of Italy
Rome - 10 Things You Need To Know
The Colosseum is one of the most recognized structures not just in Rome, but in all of Europe. The building, which was inaugurated in 80 A.D., is visited by several million tourists each year.
The Papal Basilica of St. Peter is illuminated in Vatican City, an enclave of Rome. The basilica, until recently, was the largest church ever built. The holy place stands where St. Peter was crucified and buried.
The Roman Forum is located between the Palatine Hill and Capitoline Hill. The ancient city's most important and oldest structures were situated in or near the Forum, including many shrines and temples.
Roman Forum, Rome
The Piazza del Campidoglio was designed during the 16th century by Michelangelo Buonarroti. The piazza is located atop Capitol Hill in Rome. The structure seen today dates back to 1560.
Two tourists rest next to a statue in front of the Campidoglio, Rome's city hall. The statue, one of a set of two, was built by Italian artist Matteo Bartolani in 1588 and is meant to represent Rome's Tiber River.
Castel Sant'Angelo, sitting above the Tiber River, was built by the Emperor Hadrian as a tomb for himself and his successors. The Mausoleum was later completed by Antoninus Pius in 139 A.D.
Legend has it that if a visitor throws a coin into the Trevi Fountain in Rome, he or she is ensured a return. About 3,000 euros are tossed into the fountain each day, according to the BBC.
Antique statue fragments sit inside the Capitole Museum yard, located at the Square of Campidoglio, in Rome. The Capitole Museum contains an antique collection began in 1471 by pope Sixte IV.
History of the Collection of the Capitoline Museum
Capitoline Hill and Museum [1/2]
Capitoline Hill and Museum [2/2]
Roma, Palazzo Massimo, Trevi-Brunnen, Italia
Shafts of light fill the interior of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican. Tourists who plan to visit the basilica should take note of a strictly enforced dress code, which includes no shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts.
The ceiling of Sistine Chapel was painted by Michelangelo Buonarroti. Images on the ceiling depict scenes from the book of Genesis, and the walls are covered with Renaissance frescoes created by other artists.
Sistine Chapel - Michelangelo
The Sistine Chapel - La Capilla Sixtina (part 1)
The Sistine Chapel - La Capilla Sixtina (part 2)
The main staircase of Vatican Museum forms a tightening spiral as it descends. The museum is located in the Vatican Palace, which popes have called home since the 1300s.
VATICAN MUSEUMS 1/3
VATICAN MUSEUMS 2/3
VATICAN MUSEUMS 3/3
The Museo D'arte Contemporanea Di Roma (MACRO) houses a permanent art collection that includes "some of the most significant expressions characterizing the Italian art scene since the 1960s," its Web site claims.
Villa Medicis is a 16th Century garden located on the Pincian Hill at the top of the Spanish Steps. The gardens are complemented by statues and fountains.
The area now known as Villa Borghese was originally started as a vineyard in the 1500s, but was purchased by cardinal Scipione Borghese, nephew of Pope Paul V, in 1605 and turned into a park. Rome obtained Villa Borghese in 1903, and it was opened to the public.
People take a freshly brewed espresso at a cafe terrace on Piazza Navona in Rome during the "Espresso Italiano day 2009." Italians drink some 70 million cups of coffee at the bars every day, according to the figures given by the National Institute of Italian Espresso.
This aerial shot of Rome shows the Vittoriano Monument, dedicaded to the Italian king Vittorio Emmanuelle II, in the background.
Italian shoppers browse at Via Condotti, which is the home to some of the world's most famous designer boutiques, in Rome.
The Spanish Steps connect Piazza di Spagna to Trinita dei Monti, a French church. Once a gathering place for beautiful men and women hoping to be chosen as artists' models, the Spanish Steps are now used as a catwalk for an annual summertime fashion show.
The Ara Pacis Augustae, or Altar of Peace, dates back to 9 B.C. The altar was built to celebrate the advent of peace under the reign of Augustus, Rome's first emperor.
The Vittorio Emmanuele II monument is seen at sunset. With nearly 3,000 years of history, Rome continues to live up to its motto of "The Eternal City," being one of the founding cities of Western civilization.
Tourists visit the Foro Romano in Rome. The Roman Forum was the city's political and economic center during the Republican era and maintained its position into the Imperial age. It was mostly abandoned at the end of the 4th century.
Gondolas line the bank near Venice's grand canal with the San Giorgio Maggiore church in the background.
Mystic Venice, Italy
Venezia - Venice
Street scenes of Torino, or Turin, the capital of Piedmont. This sub alpine territory is famous for the shroud of Turin, its cafes and cars.
The ancient Greek Temple of Juno, located in the medieval city of Agrigento, on Sicily's southern coast.
The Temple of Juno was built in the mid-5th century BC. It was dedicated to the goddess Hera (Greek name), or Juno (Roman name).
Italy Tour on Sicily - Palermo and more cities
Travel Series - Sicily
Cyclists pedal in downtown Milan's Duomo Square, renowned Milan's gothic cathedral in the background.
Milanese were forced to renounce to their cars by local authorities calling for a car less day to fight pollution and encourage citizens to take public transportation. Some 150 cities all over Italy declared a car less day on Sunday, Feb. 6, 2000.
Milan, Italy: Leonardo da Vinci
Milano - Italy
Tourists visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Cathedral in the "Square of Miracle" Aug. 24, 2002 in Pisa, Italy.
The Tower of Pisa is the bell tower of the Cathedral. Its construction began in August, 1173 and continued for approximately two hundred years.
The tower began to lean due to interaction with the soil on which it was built. The tower reopened in December, 2001 after 10 years of stabilization work.
Leaning Tower of Pisa
Aerial view from a mongolfiere (hot air balloon) as it flies over the ruins of the antic Pompei city, near Naples, May 27, 2005.
Pompeii, Italy: Window on Ancient Rome
Michelangelo's famous marble statue of "David" (left) is bathed in natural light streaming through the dome of Florence's Accademia Gallery May 24, 2004, next to the "Pieta", another Michelangelo sculpture.
Italy's cities, villages and capitals offer a plethora of adventures
Florence, Italy: Michelangelo's David