Rome Travel Guide

How to Visit the Capuchin Crypt in Rome

Sat 25 May 2024

How to Visit the Capuchin Crypt in Rome

There’s a lot more to Rome than its most famous sites. Although the Eternal City is justly famous for world-renowned landmarks like the Colosseum and the Vatican, the Spanish Steps and the Trevi fountain, scratch beneath the surface and you’ll soon discover an array of fascinating lesser-known places just waiting to be discovered by the intrepid visitor. 

One of our favorite off-the-beaten-path sites in Rome is the crypt of the Capuchin church of Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini, where mind-bending decorations created from the bones of thousands of dead monks are arranged into complex patterns. We think that everyone should visit the crypt when in Rome, which is why it’s the highlight of our brand new Secrets Beneath Rome tour

Read on to discover everything you need to know about how to visit this unique site, and learn why the Capuchin bone chapel is a must-visit when in Rome! 




What is the Capuchin Crypt?



The Capuchin Crypt is a subterranean ossuary (or bone chapel) located underneath the church of Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini in Rome. Famous for its macabre decorations fashioned from human bones, it’s one of the most fascinating - and bizarre - sites in the Eternal City. .

The crypt contains the skeletal remains of over 3,700 Capuchin friars, arranged in intricate designs that take the form of chandeliers, arches and other architectural features. The crypt was created sometime in the 17th or early 18th century not long after the Capuchin friars relocated from their original friary across town to the present location. 

The monks brought with them the remains of fellow Capuchins who had been buried in the grounds of the old monastery, and began the tradition of creating decorative displays with the bones - ostensibly to serve as a sobering reminder of the transient nature of human life and the inevitability of death. For more on the history and symbolism of the crypt, check out our separate article here:

 6 things you need to know about the Capuchin Crypt


Can I Visit the Capuchin Crypt?



Yes! The Capuchin Crypt is open to the public and forms part of the Capuchin Museum complex, a small but well-curated collection that details the history of the Capuchin order through religious artifacts, artworks, vestments and relics, accompanied by helpful informational panels. An excellent and entertaining audio guide provides valuable context for your visit. The Capuchin Crypt forms the climax of the visit to the complex, and is reached via a flight of stairs from within the museum. Please note that photography is not permitted in the crypt. 


How do I get to the Capuchin Crypt? 



The Capuchin crypt is located below the Capuchin’s headquarters in Rome, Santa Maria della Concezione. It’s centrally located at the bottom of Via Veneto, just steps from Piazza Barberini. Piazza Barberini is connected to Rome’s metro network on the red A line. 


What are the opening hours of the Capuchin Crypt? 


The Capuchin Crypt is open every day of the week from 10 AM to 7 PM. Last admission is at 6.30 PM. You should plan to allow approximately one hour for your visit. 


How much do tickets to the Capuchin Crypt cost? 


Full-price tickets to the Capuchin Crypt and Museum cost €10. A reduced ticket costing €6.50 is available for children under the age of 18, students aged 25 and under with valid ID, visitors aged 65 and over, international tour guides and members of religious orders. Visitors with disabilities are entitled to free entrance. 


Can I buy tickets to the Capuchin Crypt in advance? 


Yes, you can buy tickets in advance via the Capuchin museum’s official website. Tickets are also available on site at the ticket office. Alternatively, you can join a tour that includes a visit to the crypt like Through Eternity’s Secrets Beneath Rome tour. Tickets are included, and as you’ll be entering at a specific time you won’t have to wait in line to get in regardless of how busy it is. 


Is it worth taking a tour that includes the Capuchin Crypt?



Whilst the Capuchin Crypt is one of the most interesting underground sites in Rome, there’s plenty more to experience beneath ground level in the Eternal City. Joining a small-group tour that combines a visit to the Capuchin Bone Crypt with the incredible Roman catacombs across town is an excellent way to pack more into your subterranean adventures. 

As the sites are far apart and not connected via public transport, it isn't possible to visit both the Capuchin Crypt and the Catacombs on the same day without private transportation. Luckily, our Secrets Beneath Rome tour includes both sites as well as private transport, meaning you’ll be able to travel in comfort!



What is there to see at the Capuchin Crypt?



The main attraction in the Capuchin Crypt complex is of course the series of extraordinary skeletons and bone decorations that adorn the six rooms of the underground crypt, but there’s plenty more to see during your visit. Perhaps most impressively of all, the Capuchin Museum is home to Caravaggio’s St. Francis in Prayer, one of the finest works by the great Baroque master in Rome.

For more on what you need to see when visiting Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini, check out our dedicated article here: What to See at the Capuchin Crypt in Rome.

Fancy seeing the amazing Capuchin Bone Chapel in Rome for yourself? Then check out our new Secrets Beneath Rome small group tour, where we head underground in search of Rome's eeriest hidden sites. Click the link below to find out more!


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For over 20 years, Through Eternity have been organizing itineraries showcasing the best of Rome led by our resident expert guides. If you're planning a visit to the Eternal City this Spring, be sure to get in touch to help plan your perfect trip!








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