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Few of Ancient Rome's surviving monuments depict the Empire's fall quite as vividly as the Mausoleum of Hadrian. In just 270 years it went from being a symbol of imperial domination to one of military desperation. Here are some points to start your tour!
Built by the Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for his family in 139 AD, it was later used as a fortress and castle, and currently serves as one of Rome's leading museums!
The mausoleum's design was inspired by one constructed for the Emperor Augustus a century earlier. Unfortunately, only the ruins of the earlier building remain.
Most of the building's decorative features were lost in the 5th century when it was incorporated into the Aurelian Wall to defend against the threat of marauding Germanic tribes.
Barely a decade after its fortification, the Visigoths pillaged the mausoleum and emptied many of the funerary urns during the 410 sacking of Rome.
In 590, Pope Gregory I reported seeing an angel sheath its flaming sword on the roof, bringing an end to the city's plague. It's been known as the Castel Sant'Angelo ever since!
From April to September the Mausoleum of Hadrian's opening hours are 9:00AM to 7:00PM. Off-season, you will have to get there early as it closes at 2:00PM. Book tickets in advance to save time queuing!
Located on the banks of the Tiber close to the Vatican, the Mausoleum of Hadrian can be easily reached by bus (route 40 from the main station) and by taking the metro line A to Lepanto station.
- When to visit9:00AM to 7:00PM, April to September. 9:00AM to 2:00PM in the off-season.
- What is the price?Adult tickets are just €10.50.
- Will I need a guide?It will definitely help. Might be worth it to check out our best-selling tours.
- How to get thereThis attraction is located close to the Vatican and can be reached by bus route 40, or metro line A to Lepanto station.
- Additional tips*Admission is free on the first Sunday of each month!
What People Are Saying About Castel Sant'Angelo
This tour was amazing. The amount of information on hand and the fact that all the different war machines and flying machines have been made and can be used (to an extent).
Roberto was a great guide but the coach didn't stop for photos of anything other than the trevi fountain and Roman forum. Would've been nice to be able to get good photos of the other things we passed too- I would extend the tour an extra hour and give time to stop in even if just at roadsides.
Our tour guide was warm and welcoming. He obviously loves his job and is a real gentleman. We learnt a lot about the history of Castel Sant' Angelo from our guide and would not hesitate to recommend him again :).
A great Segway experience with Olef. Taught us to ride the Segway then expertly guided us around the amazing city of Rome. His knowledge of Rome is to be applauded and his delivery was great too. A really great and fun way to see thus amazing city.
We had a very enjoyable tour of the various Bernini statues and locations mentioned in the Angels and Demons book. Our tour began with a rain, lightening and thunder which just added to the mood. Our guide Demitri was very entertaining and extremely knowledgable about all the locations and the artwork. He was able to add a lot more to the tour than just being confined to the content of the book, many of the back stories were fascinating. Would definitely recommend this tour.