You’ve probably already heard about the Jubilee and also about the Anno Santo, the Holy year. This is a tradition that began in the 1300, when it became possible to obtain plenary indulgences, absolution, by visiting at least 4 of the largest Roman basilicas. Through walking miles and miles from one place of martyrdom and penance to another, pilgrims would visit these churches seeking the pardoning of their sins.
Inspired by these long pilgrimages of devotion, in the second half of the 16th century, Saint Phillip Neri decided to organise the famous Seven Churches in Rome pilgrimage: a total of 25 kilometres by foot in two days. Apart from the 4 patriarchal basilicas (Saint Peters, Saint Paul Outside the Walls, Saint John of Lateran and Saint Mary Major), another three churches with celebrated reliquaries were added: Saint Lawrence Outside the Walls, The Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem and Saint Sebastian Outside the Walls.
Now this is what we are talking about! Not just a tour but a journey into the past – following in the footsteps of these early pilgrims! Of course these days the path is less difficult and tiring than it was back then, yet it is still an experience filled with profound significance and interest.
A visit to the most important churches was once an obligation to anyone who arrived in Rome. Today this is still one of the more thought-provoking explorations of the city and not for purely religious motives. This is one of the best ways to discover and enjoy the artistic and archaeological beauty of Rome, each of these churches is a masterpiece.
We have chosen three. The most significant, Saint Peter’s Basilica, we have left out because it is generally included in our tours of the Vatican, and it truly does deserve a dedicated tour.
Francesca was an amazing tour guide for our family with kids ages 10, 10, 6. She kept them engaged the whole time, explained the historically significant aspects of the... read more
We visited with our three boys, ages 12, 9, 7. Grace was amazing! She had so many interesting details to share with us. Grace is energetic, kind, incredibly knowledgeable... read more
Amazing tour hosted by Francesca. Kids thoroughly enjoyed all parts of the Colosseum. Francesca was so engaging with the kids, made it fun and adapted to what they wanted to... read more
We did the Vatican tour and the Colosseum tour with Francesca! She was amazing with our two boys aged 9 and 12. They both said her tours were their favorite... read more
My friend and I did Francesca's tour together; it was a wonderful experience!
Even though we both have been to Rome several times, we had never seen
these smaller... read more
We had a fantastic Colosseum tour with Francesca today! She was very knowledgeable and our children (ages 5, 7, and 10) were completely engaged. She adapted well to their interests... read more
Brilliant! Absolutely brilliant!
Never have I been on a virtual art tour and my sense of Google Earth is limited.
There are THREE Caravaggio paintings that I am... read more
Francesca gave an insightful virtual tour of the Caravaggio painting in Rome. I felt like i was in Rome walking the street. Francesca was awesome.
I have enjoyed all of the online classes/tours from Joy of Rome so much. They are inspiring and fun and informative and I especially love all the great stories of... read more
I have been so sad regarding our cancelled trip to Europe in July. Joy of Rome is now offering virtual tours via zoom that felt like we were... read more
Last November I had the the experience of a life time touring Rome with this outstanding company. I toured the Caracalla Baths, Colosseum, Vatican Museum, Sistine Chapel and the Villa... read more
My husband and I had a wonderful experience with Joy of Rome tours. They provided 3 of our tours while in Europe and they were the best tours of our... read more
We first toured with Joy of Rome 5 years ago and enjoyed being with Francesca so much that we toured again 3 years ago and then again last May. ... read more