Ancient Ostia Group Tour

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  • 4 hours


The Ancient Ostia Group Tour departs from Rome with your guide passing the old Ostiense Gate, the ancient city walls erected by Emperor Aurelian in 270 AD and the huge marble Pyramid of Caio Cestius dating from 1st century BC. After 12 miles reach Ostia Antica Excavations situated at the mouth of the River Tiber on the Mediterranean coast and visit the maritime port of ancient Rome. Only rediscovered in the 19th century and excavated largely form 1920s to 1940s, Ostia was founded probably in the 7th century BC for salt extraction from marshy swamps but later in the 4th century BC it became a military and naval port protecting the Tiber access to Rome.

Ancient Ostia Group Tour

With Rome’s growing power it turned into a thriving and vital commercial port  which for centuries imported wheat, grain, foodstuffs, luxurious exotic goods, spices, multicoloured marbles, Egyptian obelisks and  innumerable wild animals for the amphitheatre games from Africa and Asia. The inhabitants were traders, shipbuilders, mariners, warehouse workmen, slaves, public officials and wealthy patrician families all busily engaged in intensive commerce and transportation over  sea, river and land. Many of the freedman and slaves were of different origins, languages and religions: Greeks, Phoenicians, Iberians, Gallic, Egyptians, Frisians and recently a Synagogue dating from 1st century BC was unearthed.

The Ancient Ostia Group Tour continues visiting the superb typical Mediterranean setting of the excavations, covered with majestic umbrella-pines and cypresses, is as fascinating as Pompeii  but without crowds and just 20 minutes out of Rome. 34 hectares have been excavated from the time it suddenly became a ghost town when an epochal flood changed the course of the Tiber. With intriguing and entertaining explanations recounted by your erudite guide you will experience how life was in this ancient sea-port, discovering various types of dwellings and tenement-flats (insulae) of the middle and lower classes and visit residences of the wealthy during your stroll  along the network of intact streets.

During the Ancient Ostia Group Tour you can explore the interiors of temples, roman baths, shops, mills, taverns and public cloakrooms all with vivid  mosaic floors, frescoed  walls, stuccoed decorations and statues, rendering to the traveller a full  idea of the teeming frenetic life of the port. Return to Rome by swift highway and end of the Ancient Ostia Group Tour.

MEETING POINT AND TIME: From Hotel: 6:45 / 7:15 am
From Agency: 8:00 am
DEPARTURE: Every Friday and Sunday morning.
From April 1st to October 31st