Morning or Afternoon Tour: After choosing between the morning and the afternoon tour, climb aboard the comfortable air-conditioned coach near Rome's Termini railway station. As the bus meanders through the streets of the Eternal City, take in the views and learn about the places you're about to see from your local guide. Pass through aesthetically pleasing Piazza del Popolo and cross the Tiber River, getting a view of the imposing Castel Sant' Angelo.
Hop off the coach and skip the usually long line to get into the Vatican Museums, home to some of the world's most renowned and recognizable art works. Follow your guide down Guiseppe Momo's bronze spiral staircase to the art and linger in the great Gallery of Tapestries and Gallery of Map.
Learn about the Flemish tapestries that grace the walls and about how they were based on paintings by students of Raphael, the Renaissance-era painter whose wall frescos of angels and cherubs are also in the museum. Then head to the Sistine Chapel, the room that Michelangelo painted and, perhaps, boasts some of the most famous images in the history of painting. Look out particularly for The Last Judgment and The Creation of Adam.
After lingering in the Sistine Chapel for a while, head over to St. Peter's Basilica, the most important Catholic church in the world. And don't miss another Michelangelo masterpiece: his amazing sculpture of La Pieta. Also don't miss Bernini's Baldachino, used from bronze stripped off of the Pantheon. Learn about the history of the church from your guide and hear little-known stories about the building and its construction.
Full-Day Tour or Full-Day Tour with Lunch:
Upgrade to a full-day tour which combines the morning with a walking tour of Christian Rome in the afternoon.
Meet the guide and get ready for an engaging tour of Rome, seeing the most legendary Christian landmarks in this city. Stroll around Esquiline Hill, one of the city's famed seven hills, and home to the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, a massive church. Then head over to San Giovanni in Laterano, or St. John Lateran, a basilica that is the official church of the pope. Next door take a moment to see the Holy Steps, supposedly the staircase that was part of Pontius Pilate's palace in Jerusalem, which Christ would have walked on for his trial. Today pilgrims ascend the 28 steps on their knees, saying a prayer for each step.
At the top of the steps in the Sancta Sanctorum, or Holy of Holies, a room that was once a depository for some of the holiest relics in Christendom. Objects included the heads of Sts. Peter and Paul, a chunk of wood from the table where the Last Supper was eaten, and the Holy Foreskin, the prepuce of Jesus, which was stolen in 1527 by a marauding German soldier in the Sack of Rome. (It ended up in the medieval hill town of Calcata, just north of the city.)
Later head to the Appian Way, an ancient Roman road to visit some important early Christian churches, including the Chapel of Domine Quo Vadis, which boasts a cemented imprint of the ghost of Christ. Also visit some of the catacombs, burial grounds of the early Christian community. After exploring underground, visit the old spa ruins at the Baths of Caracalla, and then finish your tour with a hotel drop-off or a drop-off in town.