The Forum Romanum is located next to the Coliseum. It was the political and economical centre of Rome during the Republic.
Today, the forum can look like a disorderly collection of ruins to the uninitiated, but with some imagination you can see the Roman empire come back to life at this site. Remains of many buildings from different periods are visible; the forum was littered with temples, basilicas and triumphal arches.
The area was the center of activity in Rome. Here, triumphal processions took place, elections were held and the Senate assembled.
This was the downtown area of the ancient city, where you could cross paths with Cicero or Caesar himself on their way to the political, religious, and commercial buildings which are still visible here today, 2000 years later, in various states of preservation. Very evocative of the power of Rome in her Golden Age.
Open daily 9am -one hour before sunset. Admission until 2 hours before closing time. Admission free.
The Roman Forum is the heart of ancient Rome.
It was the political, religious and commercial heart of the city as far back as 6 BC.
Today it is a valley of ruined buildings and temples, which you can wander around and amaze at the history and imagine the grandeur that was lost long ago.
They are still working on uncovering and restoring parts of the Forum
There was not just one 'Roman Forum' in Rome. Different forums were constructed at different times during the Empire, built over each other, overlapping, adjacent to each other....the reason why the main Forum site (the 'Foro Romano') can be so very difficult to understand for the non-professional
Not everyone has the time, the physical ability or the desire to pay for the combined Colosseum/Forum/Palatine ticket. So it is worth knowing that you can get very good views of almost all the (several) Roman forums from the (almost-pedestrianised) Via dei Fori Imperiali.
You can't see all of the main forum site (the 'Foro Romano'), of course. The modern road is high above the level of ancient Rome so you get almost-overhead views of all the excavated remains near to it which does help enormously with getting an idea of the original layouts.
You can also see the forums on both sides of the Via dei Fori Imperiali, none of which are open to the public: the Foro di Traiano (Trajan's forum), the Foro di Augustus (Forum of Augustus), Foro di Cesare ( Forum of Caesar), Foro di Nerva (Forum of Nerva) and part of the Foro della Pace (Forum of Peace).
There are information boards (in English as well as Italian) dotted about to help you make sense of what you are seeing.
Even if you do pay for your ticket and enjoy exploring 'The Forum', take the time to cross the Via dei Fori Imperiali and have a look at all the other forums. It's worth it to understand just how vast and imposing, and how long-lasting, the ancient Roman city was. :-)
The Roman Forum was, in roman times, surrounded by churches, temples and monuments, and it was the centre of civil life in the old city. In there forums elections were held, the assemblies of the Senate and the people, religious ceremonies and the administration of justice.
It is now a gathering of ruins, from the Emilia Basilica, the Temple of Venus and Rome, the Julius Caesar temple, the Titus Arch, the Via Sacra to the Palatine, the church of Santa Maria Antiqua and the Arch of Septimio Severo.
The forum shows us how romans, in early times, were much more organized than we are today, and how many things were invented by them to make politics, cities and people a little bit better.
The Forum was the civic heart of the Republic of Rome. The area was once filled with temples and palaces. Today all these are ruins and you'll have to use all of your imagination to try to envision how it must have looked. Still, it's impressive if you think that most of the buildings were built between 500 BC to 400 AD. A friends of mine told me that this place calms him because all our worries seem small when you come here and realize how quickly the time flies.
The Arch of Septimius Severus is one of the structures still standing. If you're interested in Roman history it's a good idea to have a good travel guide with you to be able to indentify the ruins.
I have to admit that Roman Forum and its view from Capitol Hill was my favorite spot in Rome. I knew that this place was the host of all the main temples and halls of justice. I also knew that this was the political, religious and commercial center of the city, but nothing, in all the readings that I have done prior to my trip to Rome, prepared me for the surprise and the wonderful feeling I had once I laid my eyes on this site. My mind started to wonder and my imagination to run wild while I was walking the streets of this jewel and I was listening to the audio guide that I downloaded from Rick Steve's web site before leaving Chicago.
There is so much to do and to see here and you should plan your visit accordingly. You also need to make sure that you wear comfortable shoes (sneakers are best!) as streets are uneven and rocky. You will find several fountains scattered all over the place with really good water, just in case you get thirsty or you need to refill your water bottle (in case you carry one, like I always do).
Regardless of the bad weather (rainy, windy and cold most of the time of our visit), we ended up spending close to 4 hours visiting the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill and I still feel that I could have easily spent more time here. We had to make sure, though, that we had time to visit the Colosseum also during the same day since we decided to buy the Roma Card and this gave us admission to these sites for 1 day only. There are some advantages if you buy the Roma Card, so do your homework and decide if it's better to get the card or to get the individual ticket from the site.
The ticket (if you buy it from the ticket booth) costs 11 Euros and it gives you admission to Roman Forum, Palatine Hill and Colosseum for 2 consecutive days, one entry per site. If you decide to buy the ticket from one of the sites, then make sure you buy it from the Roman Forum entrance instead of the Colosseum. The lines are much shorter here and I think it is a good strategy to visit Roman Forum and Palatine Hill before going to the Colosseum.
My favorite things that we saw here: Caligula's Palace, the forum Main Square, Temple of Saturn and the House of Vestal Virgins.
I was very pleasantly suprised by the Roman Forum. It had always been on our list of things to do in Rome but hadn't been our top priority. We did however visit it first thing in the morning on our first day as we had been told that the ticket for the forum could also be used to get in to the colosseum without so much queuing (this is true and I would strongly recommend doing this).
The Forum covers quite a large area really with a large number of buildings (or rather the remains of buildings) on the site. I personally enjoyed the curia (with bronze doors dating from ancient Roman times still intact), the house of the vestal virgins and the Arch of Titus to be most impressive. The views of the colosseum from the Arch of Titus are well worth taking a photo of.
I'm very pleased that we arrived very early. We got there about 15-20 minutes after opening and there were only 2 people ahead of us in the queue so we were in in no time at all. When we left a couple of hours later the queue was horrendous! Do go early.
They have an audio guide available which was fairly pricey and you have to leave an item of ID (such as passport or drivers licence) with them as security. Don't bother with this. Whilst I don't doubt the accuracy of the information contained on the audio guide it was dry, boring and unengaging and we stopped using it within the first 20 minutes of our visit. take a good guide book with maps of the forum with you instead.
A lot of ruins to see.We love to watch the ruins,but even if I love hot weather,it was hottet day at our Rome-trip,and after walking around Colosseum,we might have missed something here,because we run out of water,and had to leave earlier than we would have othervice.
It was good to have a Rome pass,we jut walked in without staying in line.Lines were quite short anyway,if you came in from the Colosseum side.
I have a link and describtion of Rome pass at my Colosseum-tip.
I found it good to view the patchwork quilt, that is the Forum, from the Capitoline Hill before embarking on the journey around its many gardens and ruins.
This way i could pick out a route through the virtual carnage of tour groups and crumbling statues and columns, to see the things i actually wanted to see, and to miss the things i didn't.......
Well-worth a atleast a passing glance is the Temple of Castor and Pollux (AD5), the Temple of Romulus (only the doors remain of the original AD4 building, but its now part of the Santi Cosma e Damiano standing behind it), the Vestal Virgins (8BC), the Temple of Vesta and the Basilica Julia (54BC).
The Basilica of Constantine and Maxeritius (3 large barrel vaults) was my favourite as its ruins are all that remain of the Forums largest building.
Entrances are at the Largo Romoloe e Remo, Via del Foro Romano, and also at the Arch of Titus on Via Sacra.
One of my favorite things to do in Rome is to visit the forum. I love walking around, soaking up the ambiance and trying to imagine what it must have been like 2 thousand years ago. Well...I have found something that makes this even easier to do. I found a downloadable guide that I put on my ipod and took with me. I simply started where the tour said to start and followed it thru the forum. It gives great detail on the specific buildings, some of their history and some interesting information that you might not find in the guidebooks. Best of all, you can skip any part that doesn't interest you and continue on tho the next. I found it very easy to use and very interesting. The forum tour started at the top of the forum and worked its way to the colosseum. It was in two parts so you could easily stop for lunch or a soda before continuing. The name of the guides are: pocketvox. You can check them out at pocketvox.com. They cost 5 euros to download but each tour lasts about two hours and you do it at your own pace. If you don't want to carry a guidebook thru the forum then these are the guides for you.
One of the greatest places in Rome, in my opinion. You just have to see it during your trip. You can feel the history around you and close your eyes and listen to your own imagination and you can see the ancient Rome then...