There are few places in history so well-preserved that they can still tell the tales that unfolded there thousands of years ago.
The Great Pyramid of Giza, the Maison Carree and the ruins of Pompeii quickly spring to mind, but perhaps none is more famous than that of the majestic Colosseum, Rome’s gory battlefield that still stands tall to this day!
The Colosseum is famous for its magnificent stadia structure and the brutal history that unfolded within its confines. The centre of grim Roman indulgence, this is where the emperor, his cohort and the people of Rome would come to watch the terrifying gladiator contents.
Here, men and women were forced onto the battlefield in order to fight other gladiators in a grizzly duel to the death, with the contest often being left to the emperor to decide the outcome.
With a quick flick of his thumb, the emperor would decide whether the loser, still alive at this stage, should live or die, depending on how good a fight the loser put up.
It was, in hindsight, a truly savage affair, and the brutality wasn’t reserved for humans, either, with thousands of exotic animals slaughtered in that blood-soaked arena for around four centuries…
This, for better or worse, makes it an incredible visit
Perhaps, the Colosseum is famous for all the wrong reasons, as a symbol of how cheap life was held in those defining days of civilisation. However, today it is a truly remarkable place to visit, a grand stadium on which every stadium that has come since derives its design!
Visitors can take their time to meander around the stands, peering out towards where the emperor and his cronies would have marveled at the spectacle, or down to where the gladiators would be led into the arena, terrified and unsure if they would be leaving it alive.
One of the best ways to experience the Colosseum is to partake in a tour, where a knowledgeable local guide will walk you through every fine detail of this stunning testament to man’s barbarity, as you stroll around the now peaceful stands where the plebs once sat themselves.
Related article: Which Colosseum tour is best?