Pyramid of Cestius, Context Travel.

My friends at Context Travel are pioneers in sustainable tourism. The company provides small group, low impact, scholar-led tours in 16 cultural capitals across the globe and seeks to mitigate the negative impacts of tourism by sponsoring local restoration projects, offsetting their carbon foot print, and promoting local businesses. Beginning next month, they will also offer subsidized visits to unique sites that are underappreciated or off limits to the general public.

Once a month, between April and September, a Context docent will lead guests on a 90-minute tour in search of Rome’s cultural heritage. These visits are offered as part of Context’s Tours in the Public Interest program, which seek to highlight off-the-beaten-path parts of the world’s major cities as a way of reducing crowding around major monuments and giving visitors a deeper understanding of place. These unusual tours are subsidized by the Context Foundation for Sustainable Travel, a 501c3 charity. These tours will be offered at a symbolic price of €5. Here’s what they’ve got in store for Rome:

    Auditorium of Maecenas, April 20 at 11.00AM
    Livia’s Villa at Prima Porta, May 23 at 9.00AM
    Underground archaeological area of St. Maria in Via Lata, June 19 at 9.30AM
    Pyramid of Cestius, July 14 at 9.30AM
    Cistern (Sette Sale) at Trajan’s Baths, August 22 at 9.30AM
    Underground archaeological area Church St. Cecilia, September 13 at 10.00AM

For booking or info about Context Travel’s tours in the public interest in London, NYC, Philadelphia and Berlin, check out their website.