Private Tour

Ostia Antica Half Day Family Tour from Rome

Art & History
Duration: 4 Hours
Languages: EN

The ancient town of Ostia Antica also known as the ‘better Pompeii’ is a marvelously preserved archaeological site perfect for a hands-on exploration. If your family enjoys history and archaeology put this private half day tour of Ostia Antica from Rome on your must see list. Like Pompeii, Ostia Antica is an ancient Roman ghost town but this one comes with no crowds!

Perfect for:
  • Families with Kids
  • Art & History Lovers
Covid-19 Health & Safety Measures

What to Expect

Take the kids back to the times of ancient Rome on this Ostia Antica half day family tour. Explore unique architectural remains whilst uncovering the secrets of a Roman port city whose apartment buildings, taverns and grocery shops are still intact. Today we take you on a carefully sketched trip to this beautiful and evocative archaeological park canopied with Umbrella Pines and Cypresses.


At this enormous 80 acres site you will see the remarkable remains of a city from the 1st and 2nd centuries AD that was completely covered by sand due to its proximity to the ocean, and thus was remarkably preserved. Surviving remains date back as far as the 4th century BC and by the 3rd century BC, Ostia was a very important port town, naval base and commercial centre for Rome, organising and supplying vast amounts of food and merchandise to the capitol.


The remains of this ancient Roman town are just a short drive from Rome but often overlooked by the majority of tourists. However, their loss is your gain. Feel remote from modern sights and sounds as you explore the archaeological wonders of this long-abandoned town.


Relive the glory of the Roman Empire with us on this Ostia Antica half day family tour away from the crowds of Rome. Settle into your air-conditioned vehicle and in just a 40-minute ride from Italy’s capital you will be transported back to nearly 2,000 years ago! On the way, your professional kid-friendly guide – an archaeologist or classical historian –provides historical background and intel that will set up the context for understanding the site.


A kid-friendly alternative to Pompeii, Ostia Antica immense network of ruins are a testament to everyday life in ancient Rome. On entering you straightaway step back in time into a typical ancient Roman town, vestiges of its inhabitants’ daily life are also clearly visible even to the untrained eye. Ostia Antica offers a rare and unique opportunity to discover the typical homes of that glorious era, its places of worship, theatre and public buildings during an unforgettable walk through history.


Walk along cobbled streets among ancient temples, houses, and shopping arcades in the footsteps of sailors and merchants with your guide who will show you the highlights of this dense treasure trove of ancient life. From the bakery to the fishmongers, from the bars, restaurants and thermal baths to the town square, every stop reveals images of a rich, bustling port daily life in Roman times.


Ostia Antica Rome hidden gem is an archaeological site that little explorers adore, perfect for hands-on exploring. This ancient Roman town has all the attractions of Pompeii with the distinct advantage of allowing closer access to the ruins so kids can see Roman life up close. Some buildings are three stories high and it is possible to climb the steps and view the sheer extent of the well-preserved ruins.


When history is right in front of you, alive and breathing, learning becomes fun. Follow your expert guide inside the amphitheater once used for gladiator fights as well as plays and hear captivating tales that keep the whole family engaged. There is no end to the fun, as you will even discover beautiful intact mosaic floors depicting mythical characters.


A tour of Ostia Antica is an all-time favorite for families with kids interested in mythology. Not only does it offer ancient thrills to rival Pompeii, but also you will encounter some artworks with mythological themes. Stroll back in time through the streets of this thriving city whilst your guide opens your eyes into the ancient Roman world with little-known details and compelling storytelling.


Taking a guided walk down Ostia Antica back lanes is a real archaeological scavenger hunt. The fun is in the detective work on finding out how the Romans lived and what did for entertainment. You will explore apartment buildings, temples, markets, bakeries, taverns, shipwright shops, a restaurant and even a theatre that is still used today for outdoor concerts.


Families who visit the Eternal City have a unique opportunity to make a school subject come alive for their children, and it is really true that a few hours in the ruins, if done correctly, can literally change a young person’s life forever. With that in mind, we created exciting itineraries full of laughs and learning. If you are interested in continuing to explore ancient Roman history, we highly recommend our Kid Friendly Ancient Rome Colosseum Tour , our Rome Underground Private Family Tour, and our Rome Mythology Family Tour, three of our most popular kid friendly tours in Rome.

Where does the Ostia Antica Half Day Family Tour start? Where does it end?

The private tour departs from and returns to your Rome hotel using comfortable transportation in a luxury vehicle.


  • The Castle of Pope Julius II (from outside)
  • Decumanus Maximus (Main Street)
  • Amphitheater
  • Ancient Roman shops, bars and bakeries
  • Lavish Public Toilets: A twenty-four seater gallery
  • Casa di Diana: A high-density Roman apartment block
  • Forum: The public gathering and administrative center of Ostia
  • Capitolum Temple: Dedicated to the gods Jupiter, Juno and Minerva
  • Terme dei Sette Sapienti: Enormous, luxury bathhouse and frescoes
  • Temple of Heracles: Largest of the 2nd century CE temples

What Is Included

  • Private licensed professional local guide
  • Private driver
  • Private transportation in a luxury, air-conditioned vehicle
  • Tickets & reservation fees for skip the line access to Ostia Antica excavation site

What Is Not Included

  • Food & drinks
  • Tips (optional)
  • Anything not expressly mentioned as included

Meeting Point

At your accommodation in Rome.

Important Information

  • This private tour is available on request Tuesday to Sunday except Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, and Labour Day.
  • Mandatory Covid-19 Rules – Traveler Requirements starting from August 6, 2021 until further notice:
    All participants who are over 6 years old are required to bring and wear a facemask.
    In accordance with government guidelines, during the service all participants must maintain a safety distance of 1 meter from other people.
    All participants who are over 12 years old must present one of the following: proof of full vaccination, proof of first vaccination administered at least 15 days before the activity starts, proof of a Covid-19 infection in the past 6 months, or a negative Covid-19 PCR test taken no more than 48 hours before the activity starts.
    All participants who are over 12 years old must bring and present a valid government-issued photo ID (e.g. passport, driver’s license, etc.) matching the vaccination or test results.
    Those who will not present the required documents will not be entitled to any credit or refund. For more information about how the rules may apply to you, read here or consult the Italian embassy in your country.


Good to Know

  • Each vehicle can accommodate up to a maximum of 8 people (guide and driver included) so with bookings of more than 6 people, your party will be divided into two or more vehicles.
  • We recommend wearing comfortable walking shoes.
  • During summer, we recommend taking a small bottle of water*, sun protection and a hat to protect you from the sun. *We discourage single-use plastic water bottles on our tours, and suggest you consider bringing your own refillable bottle.
  • Note to parents with young children: Don’t bring a stroller as everything is cobblestone. For young ones, consider a baby carrier.
  • This tour is not suitable for wheelchair users or those with impaired mobility.

How to Book Your Private Tour

  • Send Us Your Inquiry
    Fill out the tour inquiry form and we will respond with availability and price quote.
  • Payment Policy
    Full payment by credit card is required to make a reservation. We use industry leader Stripe for all card transactions.
  • Tour Voucher
    Within two business days of payment, we will email you a voucher with all the booking details. Such email constitutes your proof of purchase.

Tour FAQs

Why should I take a trip to Ostia Antica instead of Pompeii?

There are three reasons many of our clients in Rome choose to visit Ostia Antica over Pompeii. The first is that it's much closer and easier to reach. A visit from Rome to Pompeii can make for a very long day, even with a private car (up to three hours each way). The journey will have visitors spending more time commuting to and from Rome than actually walking the ancient ruins. While Ostia Antica is located just an approx. 40 minute car ride (each way) from Rome. The second reason is that the ancient town of Ostia Antica makes for an incredible visit, with many of the same buildings, mosaics and features as its more famous counterpart. Finally the third reason is that Ostia Antica, which is 10 times larger than Pompeii, is better preserved and off the beaten tourist path.

Is there a dress code on this tour?

We suggest that guests where comfortable athletic shoes, as the itinerary involves a fair amount of walking outside and the cobblestone streets can be problematic for those in dress shoes. Also, please check the weather conditions before you depart. Bringing an umbrella or rain gear on tour is always better that being wet and cold for hours.

Is the synagogue included in the itinerary?

The synagogue in Ostia Antica is located at the far end of the site. If you want to include it in the itinerary, please request this in your initial email inquiry so that we can shape the tour accordingly.

Do you have any kids' book recommendations?

We would suggest the book “Ostia Past and Present: Guide with reconstructions of ancient Ostia” to let them have some background knowledge of it first.

Why can’t I see a price?

We offer personalized, private travel experiences. The price depends on your party size and preferences.

Is Ostia Antica worth visiting?

Ostia Antica’s archaeological site is without a shadow of doubt truly worth a visit and this Ostia Antica half day family tour is one of the most popular day trips from Rome. Thanks to its stunning ruins it is just incredible and amazing even if you aren't a history buff. This 2,000-year-old town is one of the most fascinating (yet most overlooked) attractions in Rome offering a remarkable window into ancient Roman life. At this lovely site, you walk around beautifully preserved ruins in which it is possible to imagine how the city’s inhabitants lived centuries ago. Best of all in Ostia Antica, wonders abound at every turn and the lack of tourists make it an enjoyable visit with kids.

Would you like to personalize this tour?

If you would like us to put together a bespoke tour tailored to your needs, our dedicated trip planning specialists are on hand to help you develop an experience that will be just right for you and yours.

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Ostia Antica Half Day Family Tour from Rome

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