Access to Rome’s Pantheon will in the future cost five euros, as announced by the Italian Ministry of Culture on Thursday March 16th. It is one of the most visited monuments of the Italian capital and the whole country, along with the Trevi Fountain and the Colosseum.
The monument, which until now was one of the few attractions in the Eternal City that did not charge for access, will become payable as soon as “the necessary technical procedures” are completed, according to ministerial sources in a statement.
The Minister of Culture celebrated this historic measure stating that in just three months they had managed to “define an objective based on common sense”, which was to charge for the visit of the most popular monument in Italy, said the Minister of Culture, Gennaro Sangiuliano.
The controversial measure was already raised by the previous government. Sangiuliano’s predecessor, Dario Franceschini, of the Democratic Party, had announced the idea of charging 2 euros to access the Pantheon in 2017. However, in the end the measure never came to fruition since being a church they decided to opt to keep its access completely free.
Of the revenues collected, 70% will go to the coffers of the Italian Ministry of Culture and 30% will go to the Roman Diocese, which uses part of its budget for charitable actions, as well as to help maintain other temples.
Those exempted from payment will be the same as those who already receive the same benefit at other museums and monuments in Italy, such as children under 18 years of age and people with disabilities, while other groups, such as young people up to 25 years of age, will pay a reduced admission fee of 2 euros.
Access for worship and religious activities will continue to be free, as well as for religious personnel and lay workers, including the guards of the Royal Tombs located in the Pantheon.
The Pantheon, practically intact despite its two millennia of history, is the result of a remodeling carried out by Emperor Hadrian between 118 and 125 AD to a temple dedicated to the gods, erected by General Marcus Agrippa between 25 and 27 BC.
In 608 A.D. Pope Boniface IV turned this building into a Christian temple after depositing the remains of numerous martyrs inside.
Its location, in the heart of the Italian capital, and the state in which it is preserved, make it one of the most visited monuments in the world. Those wanting to visit the monument will have to go through a cash register, as it already happens with other monuments such as the Colosseum.