Another 'Ancient Rome' Art & Culture

2/25/2010 by Silvia Prosperi Italy

So have you been to the Colosseum or the Roman Forum yet? Chances are you have been to one or both unless of course you are a native Roman in which case you have probably left it for the tourists.
Of course Rome would not be the same without the famous silhouette of the broken amphitheatre or without those bits and pieces of columns standing in the valley of the ancient forum.
But Ancient Rome is not just about those amazing ruins in the centre. The city of Rome in its splendour was almost as large as it is now. Many interesting remains are spread all around the city and they can tell us a lot about everyday life 2000 years ago.
I'd like to recommend you a nice path to enjoy another 'Ancient Rome'. All you need are a couple of bus tickets, six euros and a camera to capture the wonderful sites and gorgeous views. The ticket you will need is called "Appia Antica", which includes access to three major archaeological sites which are often neglected.
Caracalla thermal baths, for instance, are imposing ruins where you can fantasize about thousands of men and women wearing sandals and gossiping while enjoying a massage or a dip in the huge "natatio" pool.
Or the grand Villa dei Quintili, probably the most impressive private estate of Roman times. To make a comparison - it is like having a private mansion with an olympic football stadium, a large gymnasium and wellness centre of its own, plus an outdoor area with seats for shows and a banqueting room suitable for a royal wedding! Beyond impressive eh?
The last site you can visit with your Appia Antica ticket is the Tomb of Cecilia Metella: a big mausoleum dating back to the 1st century BC and a symbol of the awe the Romans felt towards death. Their pagan religion was devoid of the concept of "eternal life", so the only way to live on was through memory. And they succeeded, since we are still talking about this young woman - Cecilia of the Metelli family.
Finally, you should definitely try to round off your day with a sunset walk along the last miles of the Appian Way towards the outskirts of the city. The landscape of the Roman countryside is still intact and is amazing and full of charm. But as they say the proof of the pudding is in the eating! So if you do take my advice I would love to hear your thoughts. Enjoy!

Silvia Prosperi Italy

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