If you go to Ostia, this means that you want to swim in the Italian sea after visiting Rome. Ostia lido, in fact, is very appreciated by all roman people that go there to have at least one day on the beach. From April to October, depending on the weather, both during the week end and during the other days of the week, many people spend some of their time walking on the sand or swimming.
But, of course, in Ostia there are also many other possibilities to spend your time, as there are a lot of things to do in Ostia, in Italy.
As you can imagine, like the most part of the Italian cities, Ostia has a lot of interesting place to be visited. For example you can not miss the tourist’s harbor, that is the ideal destination if you want to have a romantic walk. This place is more interesting if you consider that it has created a great tourist’s attraction where there was only a poor area. In the same area there is also the Borghetto dei Pescatori (Fishermans’ little hamlet) where in September you can take part to the Clams’ Festival and eat really good clams cooked in different ways.
The charm of this area is undeniable and is probably due to the fisherman that here leave and work, closely to the sea.
Among the things to do in Ostia, Italy, you can not miss a walk along the new pedestrian area, close to Piazza Anco Marzio. Here you can see the statue dedicated to the famous Italian poet Pier Paolo Pasolini (1922-1975), that was killed in this place. The importance of Pier Paolo Pasolini is underlined by the other two monuments, all in Ostia, that have been dedicated to him.
The tourist’s harbor of Rome
Really close to Ostia and to the mouth of greatest river of Rome,the Tevere, in the northern zone, there is the tourist’s harbor of Rome. Just like the port in Ostia, this harbor, too, was born in a place that has been abandoned for years and that is now a really nice meeting place, where have shopping, a walk or a drink with friends.
Basilica Santa Maria Regina Pacis
This is not one of the historical churches that you can find in so many town of Italy. It is only one hundred years old, as it has been designed in 1916 by the engineer Paolo Orlando that really wanted to build a votive temple to the Queen of the Peace. The desire was to ask to the Virgin the end of the war (the First World War was in fact in act).
Among the things to do in Ostia, Italy, there is a walk along the Pier. In has been inaugurated in 1940, but after three years it has been destroyed by the German troops that were trying to avoid the landing of the Anglo-Americans that were close to free Rome.
The archaeological park
When you go to Ostia, another place you can not miss is the archaeological park, that is one of the larger archaeological sites in the ancient Rome. It is the evidence of a ‘castrum’ of the IV century B.C. that in the time developed to an important commercial center. The foundation of aqueduct, of the harbor and of a large theater evidenced the great importance that the ancient Ostia reaches in the II century as commercial and cultural center.
Unfortunately, the change of the direction of the Tevere led to continuous cover-up of so that, when the river became no more navigable, Ostia starts its decline. Only during the XIX century the excavation starts, to unearth the ruins of the glorious past.
The Ancient Theater
In the ancient Ostia one of the most interesting find is the theater, that was capable to accommodate 2500 people. Because of the growth of the city, that became an important cultural center, at the end of the II century the theater was enlarged, so that it could accommodate about 4000 spectators.
Today the theater is still used, and several cultural events such as classical concerts, drama and dance are performed in this characteristic area.
The ancient village and the castle
In 830, Gregorio IV found a village and start the construction of the walls to protect the inhabitants from the raids of the Saracens. During the XV century the village was enlarged and a great tower was built, together with a moat in which the water of the Tevere slided. The castle was built in 1483, thanks to Giulio II: it was a fortress with a 24 meters fortified tower in the center of a polygonal bastion, that allowed a great protection in case of raids.
At the end of the XVI century the change of the course of the Tevere dry the moat so that the castle was left to its destiny. During the XX century the restoration starts and today it is a great attraction point for tourists and visitors from everywhere.
1) Ostia Gilberto Gaudio
2) Italy-0219 – Introduction to Ostia => Dennis Jarvis