Rome Caravaggio Art History Tour

Discover the work and life of Caravaggio in the company of an art historian
From US$446 privately
Book a Tour
Tour Details
3 hours
Product Type
  • Sant' Agostino
  • San Luigi dei Francesi
  • Galleria Doria Pamphilij
Photos & Highlights
  • Join an engaging, local expert at the top of their field in art history as you explore fundamental art concepts that define Caravaggio's place in history
  • Unique, personal tours for the intentional traveler. Choose from private tours for just you and your party, or join a small group tour with other travelers.
Select a date
Tour Description
Italian painter, Michelangelo Merisi (1573-1610), better known as Caravaggio, left an indelible mark on the world of art—especially in Rome, which fortunately contains a large selection of his works. Many know him as one of the most controversial artists of all time who fled the city after committing murder, but his art stands alone in its quality and originality. Caravaggio's influence led to the start of the Italian Baroque era. This three-hour Caravaggio tour of Rome, led by an art historian, explores the nature of Caravaggio's art in the context of its time, in order to fully understand his innovation and the controversy surrounding him.

Your walk takes you through the same city streets—largely unchanged—that Caravaggio inhabited in the 1600s, a lively and sometimes dangerous landscape from which he drew inspiration and (controversially) models for his work. You will see the exterior of a small house, still standing, where Caravaggio lived and had his studio. Your guide will bring you to Sant'Agostino church known for its Renaissance architecture. Here you will explore how Caravaggio's art demonstrated a radical spirituality that appealed to the lower classes. A stop at San Luigi dei Francesi will allow you to view Caravaggio's stunning series on Saint Matthew, his first publicly commissioned altarpiece painting which demonstrates his revolutionary use of tenebroso or tenebrisimo, the strong interplay of light and dark.

To conclude your deep dive into Caravaggio's legacy, your guide will take you on an exploration of the Doria Pamphili Gallery to experience some of the earliest works by Caravaggio, considered to be among the most important works of art in the world. Dating to the late 1590's, they offer a glimpse into the development of the artist's style. Here you will observe large paintings characterized by dramatic use of light and shadow, realistic depiction of human figures and emotional intensity. Considered to be among the most important works of art in the world, they are a testament to the artist's genius and lasting influence on Western art.

NOTE: Please be aware that from July 29th to August 30th, 2024, the Church of San Luigi dei Francesi will be closed for restorations. During this period, tours will visit the Palazzo Barberini Gallery instead.

  • You want to discover the stories and insights behind Caravaggio's famous paintings
  • You like to connect with fellow art enthusiasts and share your passion
  • You want to satisfy your thirst for knowledge while immersing yourself in the history of the city
  • Sant' Agostino – Church of Renaissance architecture home to Caravaggio's "The Madonna of the Pilgrims.”
  • San Luigi dei Francesi – Church which houses Caravaggio's series on Saint Matthew.
  • Doria Pamphilj Gallery – 17th-century palace known for its unique private collection housing Caravaggio's "The Rest on the Flight into Egypt" and "The Penitent Mary Magdalene."
  • Upon receiving your order, our team will secure a guide. You are pre-paid, your guide will purchase your entry ticket for Doria Pamphilj Gallery on-site.
Wheelchair accessibility
  • No access for clients with mobility issues due to stairs and no wheelchairs available for rent at Sant'Agostino or San Luigi dei Francesi.
  • There is access for wheelchairs at the Doria Pamphilj Gallery, but not all parts of the building are easily accessed by those using wheelchairs and elevator use might be not available at all times.
Service Dogs
  • Service dogs are allowed if you have a medical certificate proving the need. 
  • For more information about Context tours, please visit our FAQs.
Book with confidence — see Context's flexible cancellation policy here.
Where You'll Start
(4.84) 196 Reviews

Reviews can only be left by Context customers after they have completed a tour. For more information about our reviews, please see our FAQ.

We loved Laurie! She was so knowledgeable and friendly. She answered all of our questions and went the extra mile to find the answers if she didn’t know it right away! Can’t recommend her enough!
Amazing guide and tour He engaged with our group of teenagers and was interested in all they asked He was brilliant
Excellent tour very informative.