We learned something very important on this trip....a private or semi-private guide makes a huge amount of difference. We booked an "ancient Rome" tour with a private guide. The tour was 3 1/2 hours long and started at the Pantheon. The amount we learned and the level of increased enrichment of the experience was so worth the 200 euro that it cost.
A highly trained guide in Rome must spend 5 years studying Roman history (and I think this is beyond college). Find a way to cut back somewhere else and get the private guide. And beginning the tour at the Pantheon is the perfect way to go.
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