Handicapped Access at the Roman Forum
Handicapped access to the Roman Forum has improved in the past few years with the installation of an elevator at the entrance. Previously, you had to take a steep ramp down a couple of stories from the street level to the Roman Forum ruins. Now handicapped access is easily provided by asking a staff member to use the elevator.
Once you get down to the Roman Forum handicapped access is more challenging than at other tourist attractions in Rome because of the uneven ground. Only about 20% of the area is wheelchair friendly, but what an amazing 20%! Although you can view the ruins from the Via Dei Fori Imperiali street laying to the north, I definitely encourage you to go down into the ruins and walk (or roll) where Caesar walked. The floor of the ruins is much lower than street level and the rest of Rome sort of disappears. It really does feel like you’ve gone back in time.
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Much of the ground inside the Roman Forum is so uneven that wheelchair users will not be able to roll over it. Some of the area has firm ground that wheelchair users will be able to roll over. Some may need assistance. At a minimum, there is a wheelchair accessible path from the Roman Forum entrance to Julius Caesar’s funeral pyre. The path from Julius Caesar’s funeral pyre to the accessible toilet in the back is over a few minor bumps and a small ramp. Accessible guided tours of the Roman Forum also visit the nearby Coliseum.
We gave the Roman Forum a 3 Star Sage Accessibility Rating because it meets basic step-free wheelchair accessibility requirements. It didn’t get a higher rating because much of the area is covered in rough terrain.
Video of John Sage describing disabled access at the Rome Forum:
View of the Roman Forum handicapped accessible entrance located
on the north side of the Roman Forum along Via de Fori Imperiali (facing south):
Aerial view of the Roman Forum (facing south):
The image on the left shows the accessible entrance located on Via Dei Fori Imperiali road. Save your ticket at the Roman Forum because it will also get you into the Colosseum. Although only disabled visitors from the EU are supposed to have free entrance, disabled visitors from other parts of the world may be given free admission.
The pictures below are 5 meters away from the ticket booth. Instead of going through the handicapped gate and down the steep long ramp, head to the right where a staff member can escort you to a newly constructed elevator down to the Roman Forum.
The pathway to the outdoor elevator is shown on the left.
The picture below was taken from down inside the Roman Forum and shows the steep ramp on the right and the elevator on the left.
The grounds of the Forum have some smooth ground and some that is very rough such as the enormous cobblestones shown on the right.
The southern side of the Roman Forum area contains a newly constructed handicapped toilet. Wheelchair visitors will need to roll over the uneven ground shown in the picture on the left (but will not need to go up the steps). The bathroom is up a small ramp shown in the image on the right.
It has a sink that has room for wheelchair users’ knees to fit under. There is a grab bar on the left side of the toilet. The grab bar on the right side of the toilet is unfortunately oriented vertically instead of horizontally.
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